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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 48105 times)
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« Reply #10725 on: May 22nd, 2014, 08:41am »

GOOD MORNING ALL cheesy

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Nature

Jelly genome mystery

Publication of the draft genetic sequence of a comb jelly reveals a nervous system like no other.

by Ewen Callaway
21 May 2014



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Pleurobrachia bachei



Comb jellies, or ctenophores, look like tiny disco balls and propel themselves around oceans using specialized hairs, lapping up small prey with their sticky tentacles. “They are aliens who’ve come to Earth,” says Leonid Moroz, a neuroscientist at the University of Florida in St Augustine.

The genome of the Pacific sea gooseberry (Pleurobrachia bachei), which Moroz and his team report online today in Nature, adds to the mystery of ctenophores (L. L. Moroz et al. Nature http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature13400; 2014). The sequence omits whole classes of genes found in all other animals, including genes normally involved in immunity, develop­ment and neural function. For that reason, the researchers contend that ctenophores evolved a nervous system independently.

Ctenophores have long vexed taxonomists. Their resemblance to jellyfish earned them a spot on the tree of life as a sister group to cnidarians (the phylum that includes jellyfish). On the basis of their nervous systems — which can detect light, sense prey and move musculature — many researchers had them branching off from the common ancestor of other animals after the sponges and flattened multi­cellular blobs known as placozoans, neither of which have a nervous system. Now armed with data showing that ctenophores lack many common genes, some scientists contend that these are the closest living relatives to the first animals.

Moroz’s team argues that the P. bachei genome, along with gene-expression data from other ctenophores, supports this theory. For example, microRNAs, which regulate gene expression in other animals, are completely missing from the sea gooseberry genome.

The biggest surprise, Moroz says, was the absence of many standard components of a nervous system. Nearly all known nervous systems use the same ten primary neurotransmitters; the Pacific sea gooseberry seems to employ just one or two. Moroz speculates that the organism might complete its nervous system using molecules that researchers have not yet found in this species, such as specialized protein hormones.

The uniqueness of this ctenophore’s nervous system leads Moroz and his team to argue that it must have evolved independently, after the ctenophore lineage branched off from other animals some 500 million years ago. “Everyone thinks this kind of complexity cannot be done twice,” Moroz says. “But this organism suggests that it happens.”

Gert Wörheide, an evolutionary geobiologist at Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, Germany, is intrigued by the theory that the nervous system evolved twice in different animal branches, but disputes that ctenophores are the closest relatives of the first animals.

The common ancestor of all animals may have looked nothing like comb jellies, and the P. bachei nervous system may be a more recent adaptation, he says. “I think the last word is not spoken yet on where the ctenophores go.”

http://www.nature.com/news/jelly-genome-mystery-1.15264?WT.mc_id=TWT_NatureNews

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« Reply #10726 on: May 22nd, 2014, 08:44am »

Associated Press

Koreas exchange fire near disputed sea boundary

By HYUNG-JIN KIM
— May. 22, 2014 8:06 AM EDT

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North and South Korean warships exchanged artillery fire Thursday in disputed waters off the western coast, South Korean military officials said, in the latest sign of rising animosity between the bitter rivals in recent weeks.

Officials from the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff and Defense Ministry said a South Korean navy ship was engaged in a routine patrol near the countries' disputed maritime boundary in the Yellow Sea when a North Korean navy ship fired two artillery shells. The shells did not hit the South Korean ship and fell in waters near it, they said.

The South Korean ship then fired several artillery rounds in waters near the North Korean ship, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of office rules.

South Korea was trying to determine if the North Korean ship had attempted to hit the South Korean vessel but missed, or if the shells were not meant to hit the ship.

Officials said that residents on the frontline Yeonpyeong Island were evacuated to shelters, and fishing ships in the area were ordered to return to ports. In 2010, North Korea fired artillery at the island, killing two civilians and two marines.

Kang Myeong-sung, a Yeonpyeong resident, said in a phone interview that hundreds of residents were in underground shelters after loudspeakers ordered them there. He heard the sound of artillery fire and said many people felt uneasy at first but later began to stop worrying.

Both Koreas regularly conduct artillery drills in the disputed waters. The sea boundary is not clearly marked, and the area has been the scene of three bloody naval skirmishes between the rival Koreas since 1999.

North Korea has in recent weeks conducted a string of artillery drills and missile tests and has unleashed a torrent of racist and sexist rhetoric at the leaders of the U.S. and South Korea.

On Tuesday, South Korean navy ships fired warning shots to repel three North Korean warships that briefly violated the disputed sea boundary. On Wednesday, North Korea's military vowed to retaliate.

North Korean military ships and fishing boats have routinely intruded into South Korean-controlled waters that the North doesn't recognize. The Yellow Sea boundary was unilaterally drawn by the U.S.-led U.N. Command at the end of the 1950-53 Korean War.

http://bigstory.ap.org/article/report-n-korea-fires-near-s-korean-warship

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« Reply #10727 on: May 22nd, 2014, 09:22am »

GOOD MORNING CRYSTAL ~ NICE POST SWAMPRAT ~ BUENOS DIAS TODOS AMIGOS ~ cool

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« Reply #10728 on: May 22nd, 2014, 12:02pm »

HEY Z grin




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The Husband and I are watching the "Kolchak: The Night Stalker" series (1974-1975). I forgot how much fun it is.

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« Reply #10729 on: May 22nd, 2014, 12:28pm »

New Scientist

Skinny wormholes could send messages through time

20 May 2014
by Anil Ananthaswamy

Like some bizarre form of optical fibre, a long, thin wormhole might let you send messages through time using pulses of light.

Predicted by Einstein's general theory of relativity, wormholes are tunnels connecting two points in space-time. If something could traverse one, it would open up intriguing possibilities, such as time travel and instant communications.

But there's a problem: Einstein's wormholes are notoriously unstable, and they don't stay open long enough for anything to get through. In 1988, Kip Thorne at the California Institute of Technology and his colleagues speculated that wormholes could be kept open using a form of negative energy called Casimir energy.

Quantum mechanics tells us that the vacuum of space-time is teeming with random quantum fluctuations, which create waves of energy. Now imagine two metal plates sitting parallel in this vacuum. Some energy waves are too big to fit between the plates, so the amount of energy between them is less than that surrounding them. In other words, space-time between the plates has negative energy.

Theoretical attempts to use such plates to keep wormholes open have so far proved untenable. Now Luke Butcher at the University of Cambridge may have found a solution.

"What if the wormhole itself could take the place of the plates?" he says. In other words, under the right circumstances, could the tube-like shape of the wormhole itself generate Casimir energy? His calculations show that if the wormhole's throat is orders of magnitude longer then the width of its mouth, it does indeed create Casimir energy at its centre.

"Unfortunately, this energy isn't enough to keep the wormhole stable. It will collapse," says Butcher. "But the existence of negative energy does allow the wormhole to collapse very slowly." Further rough calculations show that the wormhole's centre might remain open long enough to allow a pulse of light to get through.

A wormhole is a shortcut through space-time, so sending a light pulse through one could allow faster-than-light communication. And as the two mouths of a wormhole can exist at different points in time, in theory a message could be sent through time.

Butcher cautions that a lot more work is needed to confirm that other parts of the wormhole besides the centre remain open long enough for light to make it all the way through. He also needs to work out whether a pulse large enough to transmit meaningful information could sneak through the slowly collapsing throat. And, of course, we are a long way off translating the theoretical equations into a physical object.

"Does this mean we have the technology for building a wormhole?" asks Matt Visser at the Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand. "The answer is still no." Still, he is intrigued by Butcher's work. "From a physics perspective, it may revitalise interest in wormholes."

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn25596-skinny-wormholes-could-send-messages-through-time.html#.U34yoJDn-1t

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« Reply #10730 on: May 22nd, 2014, 1:10pm »

CRYSTAL ~ I USED TO LOVE THAT GUM SHOE ~ THE NIGHT STALKER INDEED ~ SOMETIMES IT MADE YOUR HEAD SPIN grin

NO PUN INTENDED ~ OR WAS IT ~ cool ~ SPINNING CRYSTAL...

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« Reply #10731 on: May 22nd, 2014, 2:37pm »

BACK BY POPULAR ~ I MEAN ESOTERIC DEMAND ~ cool

CAREFUL OF THOSE FLASHING RED LIGHTS grin

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« Reply #10732 on: May 23rd, 2014, 09:01am »

GOOD MORNING ALL cheesy


~

Wired

B-52 Bomber Gets Its First New Communications System Since the 1960s

By Alex Davies
05.22.14 | 6:30 am



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Boeing’s CONECT system, pictured here in the cockpit of the B1 bomber, brings color screens and new technology to the stalwart B-52. Photo: US Air Force



The B-52 bomber, one of the great stalwarts of America’s military arsenal, is getting its first major communications system upgrade since the Kennedy administration.

Yes, the high-flying, long-distance bomber is finally ditching its old-school cathode ray tube, green-on-black screens for full-color LCDs, and it’s getting a suite of upgrades that will make it an even more formidable weapon in the skies.

The Boeing B-52 has been the United States’ preeminent strategic bomber since it entered service in 1955. The B-2 Spirit, introduced in 1997, may have stealth on its side, but it can’t match the B-52’s 8,800-mile range or 70,000-pound payload capacity. In the earliest years of the Cold War, there usually was at least one B-52 airborne at all times. Later, the plane flew missions over Vietnam and during the Gulf War. They bombed Yugoslavia in 1999 and, more recently, flew sorties over Afghanistan and Iraq. And as old as it is, the Air Force expects the venerable plane to remain in service for at least another 35 years.

So it’s time they got an upgrade. In April, the Air Force began the four-year process of fitting its fleet of 76 B-52s with Boeing’s new Combat Network Communications Technology (CONECT) system. For the first time, B-52 crews can easily retarget weapons and change mission parameters while airborne. They can see intelligence data overlaid on maps shown on high-def LCD screens. And the plane’s myriad communications, targeting and navigation systems can receive data electronically, rather than having it relayed by radio and entered by hand.

The previous communications system, which got a minor upgrade in the 1980s, worked well enough for past missions, but the evolving role of the B-52 on the world stage requires new capabilities. President Obama is shifting much of the military’s might away from the Middle East to the Pacific Rim. More missions flown over an enormous ocean places new importance on the B-52’s intercontinental capability.

“CONECT helps the B-52 remain a viable, flexible weapon system supporting the needs of COCOMs [combatant commands] and our nation as we react to a rapidly changing world,” said Michael Schenck, B-52 CONECT program manager for the Air Force.

The program started in 2005, and Boeing delivered a B-52 equipped with the system to the Air Force for testing purposes in 2009. Last month, the first CONECT-equipped B-52 entered service. The system will be installed as planes come in for regular maintenance at Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma City, reducing the cost of the upgrade. It is expected to take four years to outfit all 76 airplanes. According to a March 2014 budget request, the Air Force plans to spend $14 million on the project this year, and a total of $40.6 million between 2014 and 2019.

While the hardware that makes up CONECT isn’t revolutionary, it’s new for the B-52, said Jim Kroening, Boeing’s B-52 development programs manager. Kroening started working on the bomber in 1980 and spent 18 years working on the plane.

Among the new tech: B-52 crews get QWERTY keyboards or keypads with trackballs. A digital system will replace the analog interphone panels crewmembers once used to talk to each other. Crews have the option of carrying programming and recording data (like maps) on and off the plane via a removable solid state storage device—what the rest of us call a thumb drive.

The ability to receive digital data while in the air is especially important. Before the upgrade, changing the targeting coordinates for a bomb, for example, required having someone in air operations command convey the new information to the crew by radio. Someone on the plane then “fat fingers”–that is to say, types–the data into the targeting system, Koening said. CONECT allows digital transmission of data, machine to machine. That prevents errors and speeds up the process, especially for “smart weapons” that fly complicated routes after being launched.

CONECT makes it far easier to change objectives while airborne, a big advantage in an airplane that routinely spends 14 hours aloft. LCD screens make complicated information easier to understand. And the system runs Windows, which cuts down the learning curve and can allow crews to do things like use Microsoft Word to write reports during lulls in the flight.

Going forward, CONECT provides the foundation for all sorts of upgrades. It’s compatible with digital video formats. The Air Force is considering replacing the B-52’s mechanically scanned radar array with something more modern, which CONECT would support. The potential changes Boeing’s system offers the B-52 are endless, Koening said, limited only by imagination—and the military’s pocketbook.

http://www.wired.com/2014/05/boeing-b52-bomber-upgrade/

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« Reply #10733 on: May 23rd, 2014, 09:06am »

Syracuse New Times

1965 UFO – The Flying Saucer Whisperer

by Cheryl Costa
Friday, May 23rd, 2014

One incident changed forever the way I looked at things

It was a seasonal evening in June 1965, when a couple of school teachers witnessed the Flying Saucer Whisperer.

Samuel explained to me that back in the mid 1960’s he taught school in the Corning – Painted Post school district. School had just let out for the summer; Sam and his wife were enjoying some lemonade on their Victorian front porch on the quiet street where they lived on Corning’s Northside. Their eighth grade daughter and some of the neighborhood kids were playing whiffle ball out in the street before sun set. As it got too dark to play ball any more, the kids began gathering on the front steps of the porch. Sometimes Sam or his wife would read stories to the kids.

On this particular night the kids chatter was about all the UFO sightings that had been reported in the local newspaper and from around the state. Sam explained to me, “During the course of the discussion I asked the kids questions on what they thought these reports were about.”

Sam says that the junior high students buzzed with speculation about what these UFOs were and the majority all thought that they were from some far off planet like in the sci-fi movies.

“Both my wife and I were of course skeptical.” Sam reassured me, “That’s when my daughter remarked that the aliens were probably telepathic.”

As it so happened there was this neighborhood kid we’ll call Kenny who was said to be very psychically gifted. After some joking around and some more chatter about telepathic aliens, someone suggested that Kenny try and touch them. Sam watched the kid as he seemed to withdraw.

“The poor kid was obvious embarrassed.” Sam remarked, “My wife told the kids that they shouldn’t ask him to use his gifts that way.”

“After a change of subject and some other conversation, Kenny abruptly spoke up and indicated that he wanted to try and touch the aliens.” Sam said.

As I made notes, I watched Sam’s mood change. I could see it in his eyes, a look like he had seen a ghost. I patiently let him gather his words.

“Kenny … sat there on the front steps quietly like he was going into a trance. You could have heard a pin drop as we all watched.”

After about five minutes Kenny opened his eyes and the other kids asked him what he did. He shrugged his shoulders and simply said, “I invited them.”

Sam seemed to be amused, “At this point we told the kids it was late and sent them all home.”

As a waitress came by to refresh his coffee, again Sam got quiet. I gave him an inquiring look. He nodded and explained that the next day in the Corning newspaper there were reports that a bright flying saucer shaped UFO had been seen flying at tree top level by a various Northside residents about 11pm the night before.

“When I read the small news story a chill went down my spine.” He said, then added, “I showed it to my wife; she gave me a surprised stare.”

I asked him where Kenny was now and he indicated that the kid’s dad worked for the Corning Glass Works and was transferred to the Carolinas somewhere about year or so later. He never saw Kenny or the kid’s family again.

Sam closed our talk by saying, “… Before that event, I never really gave the UFO or psychic stuff much weight but that one incident changed forever the way I looked at things.”

Let’s look at some other New York sightings from 1965:

27 April 1965: at about 8 p.m. some kids in Huntington Station, NY were playing with an older brother and sister on front lawn. When suddenly a huge UFO appeared; it was described as having a large dome. They called their mother and she was speechless then called the police.

1 June 1965: at about 9 p.m. a Rochester couple was driving from Brockport to their home. Suddenly they observed three bright discs hovering in the night sky. After a few minutes of being stationary the three objects took off at tremendous speed. The next day the Rochester newspaper reported that a man called and said that he’d been chased by three flying saucers.

Summer 1965: at about twilight, a group of Auburn kids were playing hide & seek. One of them looked up the hill and saw what appeared to be a triangle shape with lights moving slowly in a southerly direction on the east side of the lake.

4 July 1965: a little after sun set while waiting for a July 4th fireworks presentation some teens sat under a wagon to get away from the light sprinkle of rain. . Suddenly, there was a tremendous flash of lightning simultaneously with a firework. The resulting light lit up what the teens describes as a huge saucer shaped object hovering above over the local mountain peak that locals call Round Top.

18 July 1965: at about 10:30 p.m. a New York City resident was walking his dog and suddenly found himself bathed in bright light. He looked up to see two bright orbs. One was hovering pouring light down on him and his dog. The other was darting around. After a few minutes the light went off and both orbs disappeared. The resident reported having a bloody nose afterwards.

If you have a UFO sighting to report, you can use either one of the two national database services: www.NUFORC.ORG or www.MUFON.COM – Both services respect confidentiality.

http://www.syracusenewtimes.com/1965-ufo-flying-saucer-whisperer/

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« Reply #10734 on: May 23rd, 2014, 09:47am »

CRYSTAL ~ CASEBOOK ~ cool

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« Reply #10735 on: May 23rd, 2014, 10:29am »

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« Reply #10736 on: May 23rd, 2014, 4:00pm »

The Top 10 Unexplained Phenomena



LiveScience Staff



1-The Body/Mind Connection

Medical science is only beginning to understand the ways in which the mind influences the body. The placebo effect, for example, demonstrates that people can at times cause a relief in medical symptoms or suffering by believing the cures to be effective — whether they actually are or not. Using processes only poorly understood, the body's ability to heal itself is far more amazing than anything modern medicine could create.



2-Psychic powers and ESP

Psychic powers and extra-sensory perception (ESP) rank among the top ten unexplained phenomena if for no other reason than that belief in them is so widespread. Many people believe that intuition (see #3) is a form of psychic power, a way of accessing arcane or special knowledge about the world or the future. Researchers have tested people who claim to have psychic powers, though the results under controlled scientific conditions have so far been negative or ambiguous. Some have argued that psychic powers cannot be tested, or for some reason diminish in the presence of skeptics or scientists. If this is true, science will never be able to prove or disprove the existence of psychic powers.



3-Near-Death Experiences and Life After Death

People who were once near death have sometimes reported various mystical experiences (such as going into a tunnel and emerging in a light, being reunited with loved ones, a sense of peace, etc.) that may suggest an existence beyond the grave. While such experiences are profound, no one has returned with proof or verifiable information from "beyond the grave." Skeptics suggest that the experiences are explainable as natural and predictable hallucinations of a traumatized brain, yet there is no way to know with certainty what causes near-death experiences, or if they truly are visions of "the other side."



4-UFOs

There is no doubt that UFOs (Unidentified Flying Objects) exist — many people see things in the skies that they cannot identify, ranging from aircraft to meteors. Whether or not any of those objects and lights are alien spacecraft is another matter entirely; given the fantastic distances and effort involved in just getting to Earth from across the universe, such a scenario seems unlikely. Still, while careful investigation has revealed known causes for most sighting reports, some UFO incidents will always remain unexplained.



5-Deja vu

Deja vu is a French phrase meaning 'already seen,' referring to the distinct, puzzling, and mysterious feeling of having experienced a specific set of circumstances before. A woman might walk into a building, for example, in a foreign country she'd never visited, and sense that the setting is eerily and intimately familiar. Some attribute deja vu to psychic experiences or unbidden glimpses of previous lives. As with intuition (see #3), research into ,human psychology can offer more naturalistic explanations, but ultimately the cause and nature of the phenomenon itself remains a mystery.



6-Ghosts

From the Shakespeare play "MacBeth" to the NBC show "Medium," spirits of the dead have long made an appearance in our culture and folklore. Many people have reported seeing apparitions of both shadowy strangers and departed loved ones. Though definitive proof for the existence of ghosts remains elusive, sincere eyewitnesses continue to report seeing, photographing, and even communicating with ghosts. Ghost investigators hope to one day prove that the dead can contact the living, providing a final answer to the mystery.



7-Mysterious Disappearances

People disappear for various reasons. Most are runaways, some succumb to accident, a few are abducted or killed, but most are eventually found. Not so with the truly mysterious disappearances. From the crew of the Marie Celeste to Jimmy Hoffa, Amelia Earhart, and Natalee Holloway, some people seem to have vanished without a trace. When missing persons are found, it is always through police work, confession, or accident never by 'psychic detectives'). But when the evidence is lacking and leads are lost, even police and forensic science can't always solve the crime.



8-Intuition

Whether we call it gut feelings, a 'sixth sense,' or something else, we have all experienced intuition at one time or another. Of course, gut feelings are often wrong (how many times during aircraft turbulence have you been sure your plane was going down?), but they do seem to be right much of the time. Psychologists note that people subconsciously pick up information about the world around us, leading us to seemingly sense or know information without knowing exactly how or why we know it. But cases of intuition are difficult to prove or study, and psychology may only be part of the answer.



9-Bigfoot

For decades, large, hairy, manlike beasts called Bigfoot have occasionally been reported by eyewitnesses across America. Despite the thousands of Bigfoot that must exist for a breeding population, not a single body has been found. Not one has been killed by a hunter, struck dead by a speeding car, or even died of natural causes. In the absence of hard evidence like teeth or bones, support comes down to eyewitness sightings and ambiguous photos and films. Since it is logically impossible to prove a universal negative, science will never be able to prove that creatures like Bigfoot and the Loch Ness monster do not exist, and it is possible that these mysterious beasts lurk far from prying eyes.



10-The Taos Hum

Some residents and visitors in the small city of Taos, New Mexico, have for years been annoyed and puzzled by a mysterious and faint low-frequency hum in the desert air. Oddly, only about 2 percent of Taos residents report hearing the sound. Some believe it is caused by unusual acoustics; others suspect mass hysteria or some secret, sinister purpose. Whether described as a whir, hum, or buzz and whether psychological, natural, or supernatural no one has yet been able to locate the sound's origin.



http://www.livescience.com/11345-top-ten-unexplained-phenomena.html
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« Reply #10737 on: May 23rd, 2014, 10:13pm »

We can learn something from China.


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A Chinese court on Friday convicted a mining billionaire said to have links with former security tsar Zhou Yongkang of murder and sentenced him to death.


Liu Han led private company Hanlong, which once launched a billion-dollar bid for an Australian firm. He and his brother Liu Wei were found guilty of "organising and leading a mafia-style group", murder and other crimes, the Xianning Intermediate People's Court said.

They and three accomplices were sentenced to death.

The Liu brothers' gang, based in the southwestern province of Sichuan, killed eight people and wounded many others over nearly 20 years, the court said in a posting on China's Twitter-like Sina Weibo.

"Liu Han and Liu Wei had extremely malicious intentions, their acts were exceptionally atrocious, their social influences were extremely vile and their crimes and the consequences were extremely serious," it said. "They should be severely punished according to the law."

Another 31 accused were given penalties ranging from suspended death sentences -- normally commuted to life imprisonment -- to three years in jail, state media said.

Sichuan is one of the power bases of Zhou Yongkang, who once enjoyed vast power as China's security chief but is now at the centre of rumours about a corruption investigation. He has not been seen in public for months.

The influential business magazine Caixin has reported that Liu Han once had dealings with a businessman believed to be Zhou's son. State media have also hinted that the gang had connections to central government officials.

The verdicts suggest officials are building a case against Zhou Yongkang, said Zhang Ming, a political scientist at Renmin University in Beijing.

"These cases are being used to collect evidence against Zhou, I think this verdict is preparation for Zhou's trial," he said.

Senior party leaders "don't want to punish Zhou Yongkang as a political case, but as a corruption case. Although it could be hard to find evidence against him," he added.

Scores of people with connections to Zhou have reportedly been detained in recent months.

"It's not certain whether he will face trial, that depends on how strong his remaining political ties are," Zhang said.

- 'Huge amount of money' -

The court said Friday that the gang were "sheltered by staff members of state organs".

The Beijing News previously quoted a friend of Liu Han as saying that he spent "huge amount of money" to get to know a "leader" in 2001 and from then "rapidly expanded his business to other provinces and foreign countries".

Zhou was the party boss of Sichuan from 1999 to 2002 before he was promoted to China's all-powerful Politburo Standing Committee, whose members have generally been regarded as untouchable even after retirement.

If the investigation into him is confirmed, it would mark the first time in decades that such a high-ranking figure has been targeted in a formal inquiry, a move that would send shockwaves through China's political elite.

Liu Han's Hanlong group is a diversified firm with interests ranging from tourism to minerals, and has assets of more than 20 billion yuan ($3.2 billion).

It launched a takeover bid of more than $1.0 billion for listed Australian iron ore company Sundance Resources in 2011. But the deal collapsed last year after the Chinese firm failed to follow through. Chinese media reports said at the time that Liu Han had been detained.

China's Communist Party authorities have been waging a much-publicised anti-graft campaign in the year since President Xi Jinping came to power.

But critics contend that no systemic reforms have been introduced, and that moves targeting Zhou are intended to sideline a political figure rather than battle corruption.

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/article/1518527/director-chinese-aerospace-company-leaps-his-death-hong-kong


And the Japanse Can Learn something from us.
Cat Litter Blamed For Nuclear Leak

http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/ap_webfeeds/e239e490bab9ba13540f6a7067005186.jpg

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The investigation into a February radiation release from the federal government's underground nuclear waste dump in southeastern New Mexico has turned to a seemingly unusual suspect: cat litter.


Federal officials have zeroed in on a barrel of waste from Los Alamos National Laboratory as the source of the leak, and one theory is that a change in the type of cat litter that it was packed with caused a leak that contaminated 22 workers with low levels of radiation on Feb. 14, shuttering the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad, New Mexico, indefinitely.

State environment officials now say more than 500 barrels of waste from decades of nuclear bomb-making at Los Alamos were packed the same way, and they are concerned that the barrels scattered between the underground dump, Los Alamos' northern New Mexico campus and a commercial disposal site in West Texas pose a potentially "imminent and substantial" danger to public health and the environment.

Here are questions and answers about the waste:

WHY WAS CAT LITTER USED IN THE FIRST PLACE?

The cat litter was used to absorb moisture in sealed barrels of nuclear waste at Los Alamos, home to the some of the world's finest scientists. Officials have said cat litter has long been used to pack waste because of its absorption and neutralizing qualities. It's commonly used, for example, by people to soak up oil spills in driveways. But Los Alamos switched from nonorganic to organic litter for packing waste in 2013, and the theory is that some kind of chemical reaction occurred between waste containing nitrate salts and the new litter. Officials said they are investigating who made the decision to make the switch and what process was followed.
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« Reply #10738 on: May 24th, 2014, 09:42am »

GOOD MORNING CRYSTAL ~ CASEBOOK ~ cool

HERE COMES THE SUN ~ HERE COMES THE SUN ~ AND I SAY ~ IT'S ALRIGHT ~ SCHMART GUY WROTE THAT SONG...

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GOOD MORNING ALL cheesy

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US News

Petraeus Emerging to Honor Post-9/11 War Dead

The first 'Reading of the Names' for those killed in Iraq and Afghanistan will take place Saturday.

By Nikki Schwab
May 23, 2014

Former CIA Director David Petraeus will be the first to volunteer that he hasn’t gotten out much since that scandal.

“I have generally sought a low profile since leaving government,” the retired general told Whispers via email. But this Saturday, he’s re-emerging in Washington and heading to the National Mall for a Memorial Day weekend tribute to those who fought in the post-9/11 wars. “This event is too important to miss,” Petraeus continued.

The “National Reading of the Names: Post-9/11 Heroes” ceremony is the first on the National Mall for those who died in the wars that took place after Sept. 11, 2001, organizers say. On Saturday at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, starting at about 10 a.m., 457 people – many of whom are family members and friends of the deceased – will read off 6,790 names of the Afghanistan War and Iraq War dead in the order that they were killed. The tradition of reading names at the memorial dates back to 1982 when, for three days, names of the more than 58,000 Vietnam War casualties were read aloud. On Saturday, the solemn affair is expected to last about eight and a half hours.

Petraeus will be reading the names of those lost from the 101st Airborne Division, which he commanded in the early days of the Iraq War. “I expect that it will be a very moving event, particularly for the families of our fallen heroes, but, in truth, for all the participants and observers,” Petraeus wrote. (The ceremony is open to the public.)

Petraeus will be joined by other military bigwigs, including Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Secretary of the Army John McHugh, retired Gens. Barry McCaffrey and George Casey, and Jan C. Scruggs, president of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund. Scruggs is proudly loaning the monument he founded, as the post-9/11 vets don’t have a permanent memorial on the National Mall.

Actress Glenn Close, joined by “Wonder Woman” Lynda Carter, Theo Rossi of "Sons of Anarchy," Joshua Bitton of "The Pacific," Jane Leeves of "Hot in Cleveland" and Len Cariou of "Blue Bloods" filmed a PSA earlier this week to pique the public’s interest.

As for other Memorial Day weekend plans, Petraeus didn’t bring up barbecuing. “I also plan to visit a memorial currently at the Canadian Embassy that recognizes those who gave their lives in Afghanistan and to make a private visit to Section 60 of Arlington Cemetery,” he noted, referring to the location where many of the recent war dead are interred.

http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/washington-whispers/2014/05/23/david-petraeus-making-public-appearance-to-honor-post-9-11-war-dead

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