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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

In what appears to be a first for a serious presidential contender, Hillary Clinton's campaign is going after five comedians who made fun of the former Secretary of State in standup skits at a popular Hollywood comedy club.

A video of the short performance, which is less than three minutes, is posted on the website of the renowned club, Laugh Factory, and the Clinton campaign has tried to censor it. Besides demanding that the video be taken down, the Clinton campaign has demanded the personal contact information of the performers that appear in the recording. This is no laughing matter for club owner Jamie Masada, a comedy guru who opened Laugh Factory more than three decades ago and has been instrumental in launching the careers of many famous comics. "They threatened me," Masada told Judicial Watch. "I have received complains before but never a call like this, threatening to put me out of business if I don't cut the video."

Friday, November 13, 2015

Some states ban smiling in driver's license photos, but wearing a colander on one's head is apparently allowed.

A Massachusetts woman this week won the right to wear a colander on her head in her driver's license photo after citing religious reasons. Lindsay Miller identifies as a "Pastafarian" and member of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, which some critics call a parody religion.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Roughly 9,000 California companies moved their headquarters or diverted projects to out-of-state locations in the last seven years, and Dallas-Fort Worth has been a prime beneficiary of the Golden State's "hostile" business environment.

Texas ranked as the top state to which businesses migrated, followed by: (2) Nevada, (3) Arizona, (4) Colorado, (5) Washington, (6) Oregon, (7) North Carolina, (8) Florida, (9) Georgia and (10) Virginia. Texas was the top destination for California companies each year during the seven-year study period.

Companies continue to leave California because of rising costs and concerns over the state's "hostile" business environment, according to the study, which also names companies and provides details of business disinvestments in the state.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Taurids are a particularly large collection of meteoroids, so the Earth takes several weeks to pass through them. They are also made up of unusually large particles, so while they are relatively few in number on a given night, they cause a disproportionate number of very bright meteors, which astronomers call "fireballs."

Because the Taurids last for several weeks, they have been divided into two separate showers because their radiant moves during that time. The "South Taurids" peak on Thursday (Nov. 5), and the "North Taurids" peak a week later on Thursday (Nov. 12).

While more meteors are usually seen after midnight, when Earth's facing edge is heading into the meteor streams, Taurids can be seen at any time of night because their radiant is high overhead most of the night.

Numerous, mysterious, long, shallow grooves on Phobos – the larger and closer of Mars' two moons – have been known since 1976, when the two Viking orbiters flew near. At first, scientists believed the grooves were associated with Phobos' large crater Stickney, which is half the size of Phobos itself. It made sense to think that whatever struck Mars to make Stickney created the grooves as well. More recently, scientists determined that the grooves don't radiate outward from the large crater, but instead from a focal point nearby. And this week there was more news about the grooves on Phobos. Scientists announced that they are likely early signs of the structural failure that will ultimately destroy this moon of Mars.


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