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Saturday, May 27, 2017

Part 1: Memorial Day feature - Charlestown and World War II

PART 1 - Charlestown and World War II
Ninigret Navy air field during World War II. For great photos of
old Rhode Island air fields, click here.
By Frank Glista

"GERMAN ARMY ATTACKS POLAND" was the New York Times headline on September 1, 1939.  Those words set the stage for what would soon become World War II.

In our country, every city and town has its own story of heroism and sacrifice given by their citizens during that time.  Charlestown Rhode Island was among them as it played an important role in our nation's success to defeat the threat from overseas.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Once again, in honor of Memorial Day, a series on the history of the Ninigret Naval Auxiliary Air Field

Reprint and update of popular Charlestown history series
By Will Collette

In past years, we took a break from the mundane town battles  to honor Memorial Day with a history of the Ninigret Naval Auxiliary Air Field (NAAF).

That air field not only trained thousands of Navy aviators to fight during World War II (including the senior President George Herbert Walker Bush), but has also had a profound impact on Charlestown's landscape, life and culture.

The series was written by Frank Glista who had a personal connection to the air field that you'll read about in the series. It spans six segments with several of them comprised entirely of vintage photos.


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Sleep well?

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Measuring the human impact of weather

WMO issues new records of weather impacts in terms of lives lost
Arizona State University

EDITOR’S NOTE: Here is yet another example of scientific research that Trump intends to de-fund. Already, government websites have been scrubbed of references to climate change and the scientific research that backs that up. – W. Collette

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has announced world records for the highest reported historical death tolls from tropical cyclones, tornadoes, lightning and hailstorms.

It marks the first time the official WMO Archive of Weather and Climate Extremes has broadened its scope from strictly temperature and weather records to address the impacts of specific events.

"In today's world, it seems like the latest weather disaster is the worst," said Randy Cerveny, an Arizona State University professor of geographical science and urban planning and chief Rapporteur of Climate and Weather Extremes for WMO. Cerveny is the keeper of the world's weather extremes.

"Knowing exactly how bad various types of weather have been in the past has been an integral part of preparing for the future," Cerveny added. 

High levels of exercise linked to nine years of less aging at the cellular level

New research shows a major advantage for those who are highly active
Brigham Young University

Despite their best efforts, no scientist has ever come close to stopping humans from aging. Even anti-aging creams can't stop Old Father Time.

But new research from Brigham Young University reveals you may be able to slow one type of aging -- the kind that happens inside your cells. As long as you're willing to sweat.

"Just because you're 40, doesn't mean you're 40 years old biologically," Tucker said. "We all know people that seem younger than their actual age. The more physically active we are, the less biological aging takes place in our bodies."

The study, published in the medical journal Preventive Medicine, finds that people who have consistently high levels of physical activity have significantly longer telomeres than those who have sedentary lifestyles, as well as those who are moderately active.

Pay doctors a living wage

Doctors should be paid by salary, not fee-for-service, argue behavioral economists
Carnegie Mellon University

Image result for pay doctors a salaryWhile most conflict of interest research and debate in medicine focuses on physicians interacting with pharmaceutical and device companies, one important source of conflicts is largely ignored in the medical literature on conflicts of interest: how doctors are paid.

In a Journal of the American Medical Association Viewpoint article, Carnegie Mellon University's George Loewenstein and the University of California, Los Angeles' Ian Larkin outline the problems associated with the fee-for-service arrangements that most doctors currently operate under. 

Such compensation schemes, they argue, create incentives for physicians to order more, and different, services than are best for patients.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Pope Francis meets The Donald

The Pope just called out Trump with the PERFECT gift

President Trump met Pope Francis for the first time on May 24, but the ocean of separation has not stopped the two from exchanging sharp words during the preceding year. 

While this was a time for building alliances on a formal world stage, the Pope still found a classy way to stand up for his values.

He gave Trump a gift:
Andrew Freedman: Per White House pool, @Pontifex gave Trump a personally signed copy of his climate change encyclical today. 7:38 AM - 24 May 2017
Encyclicals are formal letters circulated by Popes to dictate the highest priorities of the church and set the tone for Catholic values and teaching.

The Pope published his 192-page encyclical two years ago, establishing in no uncertain terms that combatting climate change is a moral imperative that we cannot afford to ignore.

By contrast, Trump has said “global warming was created by and for the Chinese,” removed climate change from his EPA’s website, and is traveling with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, former CEO of Exxon — one of the environment’s worst offenders.

Summer Movie Blockbuster!

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Trump & Nixon

Scientists Study Atmospheric Waves Radiating out of Hurricanes

Atmospheric gravity waves that spiral outward could be used to monitor storms
University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School

EDITOR’S NOTE: Here we have another example of endangered science, the kind that Trump wants to defund and erase. After all, climate change and its effects can't happen if you don't know about them. - W. Collette

Researchers believe they have found a new way to monitor the intensity and location of hurricanes from hundreds of miles away by detecting atmospheric waves radiating from the centers of these powerful storms.

In a new study, scientists from the University of Miami (UM) Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and the Hurricane Research Division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) presented direct observations of the waves, obtained by NOAA aircraft flying in hurricanes and by a research buoy located in the Pacific Ocean. 

The waves, known as atmospheric gravity waves, are produced by strong thunderstorms near the eye and radiate outward in expanding spirals.

Nuts are good for colon health

Chance of colon cancer recurrence nearly cut in half in people who eat nuts
American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO)

Image result for tree nuts"Basic healthy eating can often be overlooked during cancer treatment. This study shows that something as simple as eating tree nuts may make a difference in a patient's long-term survival," said ASCO President Daniel F. Hayes, MD, FACP, FASCO.

"Nut consumption and a healthy diet are generally factors that clinicians and patients should perhaps pay attention to as they design the approach to treatment for colorectal cancer."

An observational study of 826 patients with stage III colon cancer showed that those who consumed two ounces or more of nuts per week had a 42% lower chance of cancer recurrence and 57% lower chance of death than those who did not eat nuts.

A secondary analysis revealed the benefit of nut consumption was limited to tree nuts. Tree nuts include almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, and pecans, among others. These findings will be presented at the upcoming 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago.

Attention Hackers

Any Half-Decent Hacker Could Break Into Mar-a-Lago
By Jeff Larson, ProPublica, Surya Mattu, Gizmodo, and Julia Angwin, ProPublica.

Image result for mar a lago hackingTwo weeks ago, on a sparkling spring morning, we went trawling along Florida's coastal waterway. But not for fish.

We parked a 17-foot motor boat in a lagoon about 800 feet from the back lawn of The Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach and pointed a 2-foot wireless antenna that resembled a potato gun toward the club.

Within a minute, we spotted three weakly encrypted Wi-Fi networks. We could have hacked them in less than five minutes, but we refrained.

A few days later, we drove through the grounds of the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey, with the same antenna and aimed it at the clubhouse. We identified two open Wi-Fi networks that anyone could join without a password. We resisted the temptation.

We have also visited two of President Donald Trump's other family-run retreats, the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., and a golf club in Sterling, Virginia.

Our inspections found weak and open Wi-Fi networks, wireless printers without passwords, servers with outdated and vulnerable software, and unencrypted login pages to back-end databases containing sensitive information.

The risks posed by the lax security, experts say, go well beyond simple digital snooping.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Trump gives away military secrets to ANOTHER foreign government

Trump Praised Duterte's Drug War, Told Him of Nuclear Subs, in Phone Call
Related image
Rodrigo Duterte anti-drug war features street murders of suspected
drug dealers and users.
President Donald Trump told Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte that he was "doing an amazing job" with his brutal drug war crackdown and informed him that the U.S. had two submarines off the Korean peninsula, according to a recently-released transcript of the two leaders' phone call last month.

"You are a good man," Trump told Duterte in the April 29 call, which was highly controversial when placed. "Keep up the good work. You are doing an amazing job."

"I just wanted to congratulate you because I am hearing of the unbelievable job on the drug problem," Trump said. "Many countries have the problem, we have a problem, but what a great job you are doing and I just wanted to call and tell you that."

"Thank you Mr. President," Duterte replied. "This is the scourge of my nation now and I have to do something to preserve the Filipino nation."

Trump called the Philippines strongman—whose regime has killed thousands of people since he took office last June, and who previously bragged about killing suspected criminals while serving as mayor of Davao city—to invite him to visit the White House, which Trump's chief of staff Reince Priebus later defended as a sign of international cooperation on addressing issues with North Korea.

That apparently included the U.S. president informing Duterte that there were two American submarines off the Korean peninsula.
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North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un in the conning tower of NK's
flagship submarine. 

"We can't let a madman with nuclear weapons let on the loose like that," Trump told Duterte, referring to North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un. "We have a lot of firepower, more than he has times 20, but we don't want to use it."

"We have a lot of firepower over there. We have two submarines—the best in the world—we have two nuclear submarines—not that we want to use them at all," he continued.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The disposition and locations of US submarines is one of the country's most closely guarded secrets. Why would Donald Trump throw this out there to Duterte? What possible need to know does Duterte have? - W. Collette

Another great summer movie

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