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Meet the electric life forms that live on pure energy

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Unlike any other life on Earth, these extraordinary bacteria use energy in its purest form – they eat and breathe electrons – and they are everywhere

By Catherine Brahic

Geobacter – a current favourite

STICK an electrode in the ground, pump electrons down it, and they will come: living cells that eat electricity. We have known bacteria to survive on a variety of energy sources, but none as weird as this. Think of Frankenstein’s monster, brought to life by galvanic energy, except these “electric bacteria” are very real and are popping up all over the place.

Unlike any other living thing on Earth, electric bacteria use energy in its purest form – naked electricity in the shape of electrons harvested from rocks and metals. We already knew about two types, Shewanella and Geobacter. Now, biologists are showing that they can entice many more out of rocks and marine mud by tempting them with a bit of electrical juice. Experiments growing bacteria on battery electrodes demonstrate that these novel, mind-boggling forms of life are essentially eating and excreting electricity.

That should not come as a complete surprise, says Kenneth Nealson at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. We know that life, when you boil it right down, is a flow of electrons: “You eat sugars that have excess electrons, and you breathe in oxygen that willingly takes them.” Our cells break down the sugars, and the electrons flow through them in a complex set of chemical reactions until they are passed on to electron-hungry oxygen.

“Life’s clever. It figures out how to suck electrons out of everything we eat and keep them under control”
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Betsy DeVos Refuses to Rule Out Giving Funds to Schools That Discriminate

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>Betsy DeVos, the education secretary, on Wednesday fiercely defended budget plans to spend $1.4 billion on the Trump administration’s expanded school choice agenda, but refused to say whether her office would withhold funds from private schools that discriminate against students.

>In her first testimony to Congress since a bruising confirmation hearing in January, Ms. DeVos appeared unflappable as she told members of a House Appropriations subcommittee that the budget sought to empower states and parents to make decisions about students’ educations.

>“We cannot allow any parent to feel their child is trapped in a school that isn’t meeting his or her unique needs,” Ms. DeVos told lawmakers.

>But Democrats derided the education spending blueprint for the 2018 fiscal year as tone deaf to low-income and working-class Americans. Representative Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, the top Democrat on the panel, called it “cruel” and “inhumane.”

>The budget plan would eliminate more than 20 education programs and redirect funding to expanding school choice initiatives. Those include a $250 million program to give students publicly funded scholarships to attend private schools.

>But Ms. DeVos said states, not the Education Department, would decide whether to withhold federal money from private schools that are neither required to serve a diverse pool of students nor held publicly accountable for doing so.

>Earlier this week, in a speech to school choice advocates, Ms. DeVos said that state participation in the voucher program and other federally funded school choice initiatives would be optional. But, she said, states that chose not to participate would be making a “terrible mistake.”
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Republican lawmaker decides he's had enough of the press's shit, bodyslams reporter.

No.143204 ViewReplyOriginalReportDownload thread

>The Republican candidate for Montana’s congressional seat has been charged with misdemeanor assault after he is alleged to have slammed a Guardian reporter to the floor on the eve of the state’s special election, breaking his glasses and shouting, “Get the hell out of here.”

>Ben Jacobs, a Guardian political reporter, was asking Greg Gianforte, a tech millionaire endorsed by Donald Trump, about the Republican healthcare plan when the candidate allegedly “body-slammed” the reporter.

>“He took me to the ground,” Jacobs said by phone from the back of an ambulance. “I think he wailed on me once or twice ... He got on me and I think he hit me ... This is the strangest thing that has ever happened to me in reporting on politics.”

>Fox News reporter Alicia Acuna, field producer Faith Mangan and photographer Keith Railey witnessed the incident at Gianforte’s campaign headquarters in Montana, according to an account published by After Jacobs asked Gianforte his question, Acuna wrote: “Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground behind him.

>“Faith, Keith and I watched in disbelief as Gianforte then began punching the man, as he moved on top the reporter and began yelling something to the effect of ‘I’m sick and tired of this!’ ... To be clear, at no point did any of us who witnessed this assault see Jacobs show any form of physical aggression toward Gianforte, who left the area after giving statements to local sheriff’s deputies.”
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FCC purposely breaks own comment form after John Oliver segment on Net Neutrality

No.137730 ViewReplyLast 50OriginalReportDownload thread

>In 2014, Oliver noted the FCC was headed by Tom Wheeler, the guy who used to head the cable companies’ lobbying efforts, which Oliver likened to hiring a dingo to babysit your infant.

>Nowadays, it’s headed by Ajit Pai, an anti regulation guy who has said he’d like to take a weed-whacker to net neutrality and predicted its days are numbers which, Oliver noted, is “serial-killer talk.”

>Pai is dangerous because he likes to play the down-to-earth nerd – loves to quote The Big Lebowski, brags about his “infamous” oversized Reese Peanutbutter Cup novelty mug, and otherwise play dumb – when, in fact, he’s a former lawyer for Verizon, a company that would benefit bigly by the plowing under of net neutrality.

>Three years ago, Oliver explained net neutrality to viewers and how it would choke their choices on the web, urging “my lovely trolls to turn on their cap locks and fly my pretties, fly!”

>They did. And, to its credit, the FCC then took steps to safeguard net neutrality.

>But now, Donald Trump is president, and he wants to roll back net neutrality – though Oliver made a strong case that Trump doesn’t actually know what “net neutrality” even means. Even so, Oliver said, the Trump era seems determined to basically Control-Z everything that happened on Obama’s watch, putting in jeopardy net neutrality and all those turkeys Obama pardoned at Thanksgiving over his eight years in the White House.
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Hindus accused of murdering Muslim over interfaith marriage

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>LUCKNOW, India -- Indian police have detained three members of a Hindu militia for suspected involvement in the killing of a Muslim man who they blamed for helping an interfaith couple elope...
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Obama Political Spying Scandal: Trump Associates Were Not the First Targets

No.142921 ViewReplyOriginalReportDownload thread

In 2011, Dennis Kucinich was still a Democratic congressman from Ohio. But he was not walking in lockstep with President Obama — at least not on Libya. True to his anti-war leanings, Kucinich was a staunch opponent of Obama’s unauthorized war against the Qaddafi regime.

Kucinich’s very public efforts included trying to broker negotiations between the administration and the Qaddafi regime, to whom the White House was turning a deaf ear. It was in that context that he took a call in his Washington office from Saif al-Islam Qaddafi, the ruler’s son and confidant. Four years later, as he recalled in a recent opinion piece, Kucinich learned that the call had been recorded and leaked to the Washington Times.

The former lawmaker believes the monitoring of his communication and the subsequent leak are the work of American intelligence agents.

As we’ve repeatedly noted (see, e.g., here, here, and here), there is no known support for Trump’s narrow claim (made in a series of March 4 tweets). Yet, there is now overwhelming evidence that the Obama administration monitored Trump associates and campaign and transition officials. There were, moreover, leaks of classified information to the media — particularly in the case of Trump’s original national-security adviser, Michael Flynn, whose telephone communications with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. were unlawfully disclosed to the Washington Post.

There is a question closely related to that of whether the Obama administration was guilty of a gross abuse of power — exploiting its foreign-intelligence-collection authority to keep tabs on its political opponents, thwarting and punishing their resistance. The question is: Did it start with Donald Trump?

The answer is no. (Continue with link)
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Poll: Majority says mainstream media publishes fake news

No.143432 ViewReplyOriginalReportDownload thread

People think the MSM is fake news, yet is shown in gyms, restaurants, airports, and waiting rooms all over the country.
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Russians discussed how to influence Trump via his aides: NYT

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Senior Russian intelligence and political officials discussed how to influence Donald Trump through his advisers according to information gathered by American spies last summer, the New York Times reported on Wednesday,

Citing three current and former U.S. officials familiar with the intelligence, the newspaper said the conversations focused on Paul Manafort, then the Trump presidential campaign chairman, and Michael Flynn, a retired general who was then advising Trump.

U.S. congressional committees and a special counsel named by the Justice Department this month are investigating whether there was Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election and the possibility of collusion between Trump's campaign and Russia.

The controversy has engulfed Trump's young administration since he fired FBI Director James Comey two weeks ago amid the agency's investigation of possible Russia ties. Moscow has repeatedly denied the allegations and Trump denies any collusion.

The New York Times report was the latest indication of the depth of concerns within the U.S. intelligence community about Russian efforts to tip November's election toward Trump as he battled Democrat Hillary Clinton.

On May 18, Reuters reported that Flynn and other advisers to Trump’s campaign were in contact with Russian officials and others with Kremlin ties in at least 18 calls and emails during the last seven months of the 2016 presidential race, citing current and former U.S. officials.
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FCC begins rolling back net neutrality

No.141210 ViewReplyLast 50OriginalReportDownload thread
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai’s plan to roll back net neutrality rules took its first step forward on Thursday.

>The commission voted 2-1 along party lines to advance Pai’s Restoring Internet Freedom proposal, which would repeal current net neutrality protections.

>Thursday's vote opens a period of public input before the agency advances the proposal.

>The FCC’s formal decision to consider the proposal did not come without resistance. The commission’s lone Democrat, Mignon Clyburn, harshly criticized the proposal, and activists braved the heat to protest outside FCC headquarters.

>“While the majority engages in flowery rhetoric about light-touch regulation and so on, the endgame appears to be no-touch regulation and a wholescale destruction of the FCC’s public interest authority in the 21st century,” Clyburn said in her dissent.
Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), the chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, applauded the move and called for Democrats to come to the table to work out a legislative compromise on the issue.

>“In politics, it is rare to get a second chance at bipartisan compromise, yet right now we have an opportunity to accomplish what eluded us two years ago — clear and certain rules in statute to protect the open internet,” he said on the Senate floor ahead of the commission's vote.

>Pai's proposal would undermine existing net neutrality rules by undoing the legal basis of the regulations. The 2015 order imposed the rules by reclassifying the broadband industry as telecommunications services, which brought internet service providers under the FCC’s authority.

>The Obama-era net neutrality regulations, passed in 2015 as the Open Internet Order, aimed to create a level playing field on the internet by ensuring that broadband providers treated all online content the same.
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Leftists Destroy Female Business Owners' Burrito Stand Because They're White

No.143036 ViewReplyLast 50OriginalReportDownload thread
Two women were recently driven out of business for serving burritos while white.

Millennials Kali Wilgus and Liz “LC” Connelly tasted success for a short while after opening Kooks Burritos in Portland, Oregon, but after their business was featured in a local paper, the duo was hit with an onslaught of negative media attention filled with accusations of "cultural appropriation" from your standard miserable social justice warriors.

Apparently Wilgus and Connelly infringed on the non-existent copyright on burritos.

The women explained to Willamette Week that they traveled to Puerto Nuevo, Mexico, and became obsessed with tortillas, speaking with the local "tortilla ladies" for ingredients and tips.

"I picked the brains of every tortilla lady there in the worst broken Spanish ever, and they showed me a little of what they did," said Connelly. "They told us the basic ingredients, and we saw them moving and stretching the dough similar to how pizza makers do before rolling it out with rolling pins.”

After creating their own spin on the tortilla via a trial-and-error process, the women decided to engage in the American dream and open their own pop-up shop on the weekends. Kooks Burritos was born, and they thrived.

Enter: social justice warriors.

Getting a whiff of Wilgus and Connelly's process of creating tortilla recipes, leftist outlets like and The Portland Mercury pounced: painting the female entrepreneurs contributing to society as racist, sticky-fingered villains.

"Because of Portland’s underlying racism, the people who rightly own these traditions and cultures that exist are already treated poorly. These appropriating businesses are erasing and exploiting their already marginalized identities for the purpose of profit and praise," accused The Portland Mercury.
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