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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Ku Leuven News: Electronic cigarettes offer smokers a realistic way to kick their tobacco smoking addiction. In a new study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, scientists at KU Leuven report that e-cigarettes successfully reduced cravings for tobacco cigarettes, with only minimal side effects.

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) were developed as a less harmful alternative to tobacco cigarettes. They contain 100 to 1,000 times less toxic substances and emulate the experience of smoking a tobacco cigarette.

In an 8-month study, the KU Leuven researchers examined the effect of using e-cigs ("vaping") in 48 participants, all of whom were smokers with no intention to quit. The researchers' goal was to evaluate whether e-cigs decreased the urge to smoke tobacco cigarettes in the short term, and whether e-cigs helped people stop smoking altogether in the long-term. read more

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Andy Coghlan, New Scientist: A genetic analysis of 409 pairs of gay twins has provided the strongest evidence yet that gay people are born gay. The study clearly links sexual orientation in men with two regions of the human genome that have been implicated before, one on the X chromosome and one on chromosome 8. The finding is an important contribution to mounting evidence that being gay is biologically determined rather than a lifestyle choice. In some countries, such as Uganda, being gay is still criminalised, and some religious groups believe that gay people can be "treated" to make them straight. "It erodes the notion that sexual orientation is a choice," says study leader Alan Sanders of the NorthShore Research Institute in Evanston, Illinois. read more

Monday, November 17, 2014

Zahra Hirji, The Olympian: More than 40 percent of frac sand producers in Wisconsin have broken state environmental rules in recent years, according to a new report. This isn't the case of a "few bad apples" disregarding the law, said Bobby King, an organizer who contributed to the report by the Land Stewardship Project, an advocacy group. "It's an industry that's willing to routinely violate rules that are designed to protect communities, protect air quality, protect water quality," he said. Wisconsin is the nation's top producer of silica sand, a key ingredient used in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The state is home to 135 active mines, processing and transport facilities. That's up from only seven facilities in 2010. read more

Friday, November 14, 2014

Stephen Dinan, The Washington Times: Four men flew from Istanbul through Paris to Mexico City in late August, where they were met by a Turkish-speaking man who stashed them in a safe house until their Sept. 3 attempt to cross into the U.S. over the border with Mexico.

Their capture by the Border Patrol in Texas set off a fierce debate over the men's intentions, with some members of Congress saying they were terrorist fighters. Homeland Security officials, including Secretary Jeh Johnson, countered that they were part of the Kurdish resistance which, like the U.S., is fighting the Islamic State's advance in Iraq.

But whether the men are linked to anti-U.S. jihadists or not, they admitted to being part of a U.S.-designated terrorist group, and their ability to get into the U.S. through the southern border -- they paid $8,000 each to be smuggled into Texas -- details the existence of a network capable of bringing terrorists across the border. read more

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

WWII vet returns to the town he fought in to find that he's become a local legend. read more


Not the best place to find opinions on the matter, but there does not seem to be anyone on the DR willing to admit they are in law enforcement, so here's what Reddit has to offer:

[–]SixWolfShirt 44 points 4 hours ago

I'm a cop, and I hate second guessing other cops after the fact, but...
Those cops are fucking retards and should be fired/prosecuted. I've been to a million "armed party" calls, and the two things I always go for are distance and cover. You don't go out of your way and drive up on the grass so you can park your car next to the guy with the fucking gun. Even if he reached for his waistband, which can't be discerned on that video, they STILL deserve to be punished for being so catastrophically stupid.
I was once in a foot pursuit with a juvenile that ended up having an actual gun. One of our new guys pulled in front of him in the street, such that the kid actually bounced off of his door and kept running. After we caught the kid, we took turns yelling at the new guy. He's turned out to be a really good officer.


[–]badandy80 95 points 4 hours ago
I wouldn't usually say this, but that cop should go to jail and the driver should be fired. I know they arrived with their adrenaline pumping and on high alert with a report of a kid with a gun, but they exercised completely negligent judgement for their aggressive approach and lack of situational awareness. If they approached at a distance and engaged the kid with appropriate verbal commands (hands on your head, interlace your fingers and walk backwards towards the sound of my voice.. get on your knees and cross your legs) that kid would be alive. Instead they raced up probably screaming "put your hands up!!! put down the gun!!!" I think I was right in an earlier post where this kid was just showing them it was a fake gun. Remember the cop recently that shot the guy getting his license from his car? IMO this is the same type of cop. Source: I used to be in law enforcement.

Again, take it with a grain of salt, but a couple people claiming to be in law enforcement (one of them formerly) claim the plan of action by the driver was flawed. Would be nice for the DR to find a resident law enforcement guru.

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