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Differing Views 30 July 2018

| July 30, 2018
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Pictured above: View from Kosovo (Source: AP)

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Weather or Not:

Cooler evening temperatures at long last, with a possible side of rain.  Pray for rain - or do a Rain Dance, we need it.

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The Environment:

(This is a grim but necessary read)

This is one face of the harm we have done to our environment.

An orca whale has carried her dead calf on her nose for days in the Pacific Northwest (Source: AP)

The calf died last Tuesday morning, half an hour after it was born off the coast of Victoria, British Columbia, to a 20-year-old whale called J35. It was the first calf known to have been born to the local population, known as the Southern Resident killer whales, since 2015.

J35’s sad journey, which began near Victoria BC and has taken her some 150 miles around the San Juan Islands and Vancouver, has continued for an unusually long time, researchers said. It has become a devastating symbol, and an uncannily pointed one, for the whales’ plight.

J35 was spotted again Friday morning near the southern end of the San Juan Islands, he said. She has largely been balancing the dead calf on her nose.

“Sometimes she bites the flipper and pulls it up,” he said. “The calf sinks because it doesn’t have enough of a blubber layer, and it goes down. She dives down and picks it back up and brings it to the surface.”

PLEASE EDUCATE YOURSELVES

  • The killer whale population has been besieged by a shrinking gene pool, dwindling food supply and environmental degradation.
  • Global warming is depleting oxygen in the ocean and causing dead zones to grow. 
  • The oceans matter. half of our planet's oxygen comes from the ocean. 
  • We rely on the sea to feed us and to regulate our weather. 
  • Offshore oil spills, pollution, human consumption, dumping trash, are all contributing to the death of our oceans.
  • 30 % of global fish stocks are overexploited or have already collapsed; 58 % are at their limit. The US is 3rd in the world, after China and Indonesia, in marine capture.
  • Five huge trash vortexes have formed in the world's oceans, areas where the currents trap trillions of pieces of plastic and other debris. These garbage patches are estimated to measure between 700,000 and 15 million square kilometers (up to 5.7 million square miles).
  • As much as 99 percent of plastic waste never reaches these vortexes. A lot ends up on shorelines, polluting coasts and putting seabirds, turtles and other wildlife in danger.
  • There are other pollutants as well, like nitrate and phosphate from industrial farms that enter the oceans via rivers. These substances cause algae to bloom. When algae die, they are decomposed by bacteria, which reduces the water's oxygen content so that nothing else can grow there.
  • Globally, eight million tonnes of plastic - bottles, packaging and other waste - are dumped into the ocean every year, killing marine life and entering the human food chain.

WHAT CAN WE DO?  Be the Change You Want to See

  • Always take re-useable shopping bags to the market with you - cut down on your use of plastic
  • Recycle batteries, computers, TVs and ink cartridges responsibly
  • Leave the car at home when you can and be more conscious of your energy use at home and work
  • Make safe and sustainable seafood choices when dining in or out
  • Don't purchase items that exploit marine life (e.g.,  items such as coral jewelry, tortoiseshell hair accessories (made from hawksbill turtles), and shark products).
  • Support organizations working to protect the ocean: find a national organization and consider giving financial support or volunteering for hands-on work or advocacy.

The more you learn about the issues facing this vital system, the more you’ll want to help ensure its health—then share that knowledge to educate and inspire others.

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The Nation and Beyond:

No Wall? Won't Play Ball: President Trump said on Sunday that he is willing to shut down the government just before the midterm elections this fall if Congress doesn’t fund a wall on the border with Mexico.

Much Ado about Nothing: Government statistics show that wages for typical American workers have not risen over the past year, after adjusting for inflation, even though Republicans promised the tax cuts would unleash rapid wage growth.

Update on "The Chinese Hoax: Global Warming": The continental U.S. had its hottest May and the third-hottest June. Japan has been walloped by record triple-digit temperatures, killing at least 86 people. Record temperatures were also logged on the edge of the Sahara and above the Arctic Circle.

Manafort Trial begins tomorrow: Paul Manafort, the veteran Republican political operative and lobbyist who helped run President Trump’s 2016 campaign, is scheduled to go to trial on financial fraud charges starting on Tuesday in United States District Court in Alexandria, Va.

"I didn't inhale": Brock Turner is appealing his conviction on charges of sexual assault of an unconscious person, sexual assault of an intoxicated person and sexual assault with intent to commit rape. Turner's lawyer argued this week that the former Stanford swimmer shouldn’t have been convicted of intending to commit rape because he merely sought “outercourse.”

Turning point on 100,000 acre Carr fire? Carr Fire in California Claims Another Victim, Bringing Death Toll to 6. “We’re feeling a lot more optimistic today as we are starting to gain some ground, rather than being on the defensive mode on this fire all the time,” Deputy Chief Bret Gouvea of Cal Fire said at the news conference.

Racism in America?: Mother of Crystle Galloway says medics told her, when she called 911, to drive her daughter to ER because she couldn't afford a $600 ambulance. The African American woman who had fallen and hit her head died later that afternoon.

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iEAT

Best Chicken Salad

Julia Moskin - NYT

This cooking method for the chicken requires a bit of a leap of faith but I can attest to its working. And it's a great way to beat the heat - just get an early start on it. (Like...while you're having your first cup of coffee.)

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iREAD

"Stapleton takes us on a cosmic voyage, through space and time , a voyage of possibilities, as well as an indepth analysis of our worlds, our cosmos. Breathtaking."

Not your everyday, garden variety SciFi read.  Star Maker is the science fiction classic about a human who is transported out of his body and finds himself able to explore space and other planets. The story describes a history of life in the universe and tackles themes such as the essence of life, of birth, decay and death, and the relationship between creation and creator. A pervading theme is the progressive unity between different civilizations. Some of the elements and themes prefigure later fiction concerning genetic engineering and alien life forms. Arthur C. Clarke considered Star Maker to be one of the finest works of science fiction ever written.

A friend recommended this to another friend, who isn't a reader of science fiction. She described it as "part science fiction, part philosophy, and a bit spiritual."

From Wikipedia:

A single human narrator from England is transported out of his body via unexplained means. He realizes he is able to explore space and other planets. After exploring a civilization on another planet in our galaxy at a level of development similar to our own that existed millions of years ago thousands of light years from Earth (the "Other Earth") in some detail, his mind merges with that of one of its inhabitants, and as they travel together, they are joined by still more minds or group-minds. This snowballing process is paralleled by the expansion of the book's scale, describing more and more planets in less and less detail.

Published in 1937, eerily relevant in today's political environment, considered a classic.

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Burger Watch

  

Just sayin'....If you've passed it and not stopped: STOP.

Northwest corner Coors and 528 - Corrales Shopping Center.

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Happiness is a...

Introducing the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever -

Referred to originally as the Little River Duck Dog, this medium-sized gundog is the smallest of the retrievers and is known to be intelligent, curious, alert, outgoing, and high-energy. Life span: 10-14 years Weight: 35-50 pounds

(Note to Diary: Must be socialized with cats early on, otherwise their strong prey drive can present problems.)

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Closing Move:

This is a fun YouTube, if you have a minute:

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