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Showing posts from December 24, 2016

New Ebola Vaccine Gives 100 Percent Protection

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[Great news! Let's hope that it will be affordable enough that Africans will be able to apply it on a widespread basis. "Ultimately, only the huge, explosive 2014 outbreak that took 11,000 lives in Africa and spread overseas, reaching a handful of people in Europe and the United States, provided the political and economic drive to make an effective vaccine." *RON*]

By Donald G. McNeil Jr., New York Times, 22 December 2016

In a scientific triumph that will change the way the world fights a terrifying killer, an experimental Ebola vaccine tested on humans in the waning days of the West African epidemic has been shown to provide 100 percent protection against the lethal disease.

The vaccine has not yet been approved by any regulatory authority, but it is considered so effective that an emergency stockpile of 300,000 doses has already been created for use should an outbreak flare up again.

World’s largest hedge fund to replace managers with artificial intelligence

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[The banksters eating their own young. I wonder how to Gucci shoe will feel on the other foot! Bridgewater Associates has a team of engineers working on a project to automate decision-making to save time and eliminate human emotional volatility. *RON*]
Olivia Solon, The Guardian, 22 December 2016
The world’s largest hedge fund is building a piece of software to automate the day-to-day management of the firm, including hiring, firing and other strategic decision-making.

North Pole Temperatures May Soar to 50 Degrees Above Normal

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[Freakishly warm pole weather is likely to peak on Christmas Eve. *RON*]

Brian KahnClimate Central / Scientific American, 21 December 2016

For the second year in a row, the Arctic is facing a late December heat wave (at least by Arctic winter standards). Temperatures are forecast to soar about 50°F above normal, which would bring them near the freezing point at the North Pole.

As isolated data points, the back-to-back winter warm-ups would be weird. But taken in the larger context, it’s part of an unsettling trend for a region that is being rapidly reshaped by climate change.

Abandoned Texas oil wells seen as "ticking time bombs" of contamination

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[Corporatocracy means privatized gains, socialized losses. Texas is among several states grappling with a surge of abandoned drilling sites and dwindling funds to clean them up. *RON*]

Jim Malewitz, Texas Tribune, 21 December 2016

IMPERIAL — Peculiar things can happen after folks drill deep into the earth — looking for oil, water or whatever — and leave a bunch of holes in the ground. Fluids can gurgle and leak, migrating where they don’t belong. In rare instances, land could even sink or collapse.

Mediterranean Sea: 100 people reported dead yesterday, bringing year total to 5,000

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[This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson William Spindler at yesterday's press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. *RON*]

UN High Commissio for Refugees, 23 December 2016
Around 100 people are feared to have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea yesterday. The Italian coastguard carried out four rescue operations in the Central Mediterranean Sea. These latest tragedies bring the number of casualties in the Mediterranean this year to over 5,000. This is the worst annual death toll ever seen.

Today's Trumpery

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