As promised, here’s a column on how to survive the next decade meant for Millennials and late Gen-X who have based their future plans on the indefinite continuation of prosperity and importance of college-taught skills. Read more…
A forthcoming scientific report says that pollutants in our water, air, food, and household products have “gender-bending” effects for animals and humans. Scientists have seen a remarkable trends in the feminizing of males.
Highlights from this article addressing the topic:
“Baby boys born to women exposed to widespread chemicals in pregnancy are born with smaller penises and feminized genitals.”
“Half the male fish in British lowland rivers have been found to be developing eggs in their testes; in some stretches all male roaches have been found to be changing sex in this way.”
“Male alligators exposed to pesticides in Florida have suffered from lower testosterone and higher oestrogen levels, abnormal testes, smaller penises and reproductive failures. Male snapping turtles have been found with female characteristics in the same state and around the Great Lakes, where wildlife has been found to be contaminated with more than 400 different chemicals. Male herring gulls and peregrine falcons have produced the female protein used to make egg yolks, while bald eagles have had difficulty reproducing in areas highly contaminated with chemicals.”
“Two-thirds of male Sitka black-tailed deer in Alaska have been found to have undescended testes and deformed antler growth, and roughly the same proportion of white-tailed deer in Montana were discovered to have genital abnormalities.”
“At the other end of the world, hermaphrodite polar bears – with penises and vaginas – have been discovered and gender-benders have been found to reduce sperm counts and penis lengths in those that remained male.”
What are examples of “gender bending” chemicals?
- Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)
- Flame Retardants
- Phthalates (plasticising chemicals)
In what products are these chemicals found?
- Cosmetics, shampoos, and toiletry products
- Cleaning products
- Pesticides, insecticides, herbicides
- Processed food
- Chemicals for industrial use
This scares me. ~Segen
You have probably seen the iPhone commercial demonstrating the application called “Shazam.” If not, when you’re listening to a song you like, but you don’t know the name of, you open the application, play more of the song, the program identifies the song, and links you to the iTunes store to buy the song.
With most iPhone applications, it’s pretty easy to understand conceptually how the program works, but this one amazes me. Shazam is the perfect name. It’s like magic.
One buddy of mine is convinced it’s rigged to some international bar trivia league where members identify songs at all hours. How do you think they do it?
Check out this video promoting the Center for Inquiry. (h/t: Break the Terror)
Check out today’s NY Times in the Technology section. You will find an important article, both because of its subject matter, web privacy, and because Urbanagora friend Kiyoshi Martinez is featured in it. Web Privacy on the Radar in Congress begins by introducing the subject and Kiyoshi:
Here are some things Internet users can discover about Kiyoshi Martinez, a 24-year-old man from Mokena, Ill., from some of his recent posts online. He watched “The Colbert Report” on Tuesday night, he likes the musician Lenlow and he received bottles of olive oil and vinegar for his birthday. Mr. Martinez has Facebook and LinkedIn pages, a Twitter account and a Web site that includes his résumé.
Slate’s William Saletan discusses drones, which he believes to be the future of warfare. The explicit parity between these drones and the video games so many children now grow up with is unsettling, yes, but is it also ultimately irrelevant? Less risk to American soldiers is always a good thing, is it not? This is certainly fair play [whatever that means] within the bounds of warfare. That answer doesn’t satisfy really satisfy me; I’m interested in what you think after reading Saletan’s piece.
There’s also a deeper argument here. “They don’t understand war’s horror the way McCain does,” Saletan writes about tomorrow’s army, those who have grown up playing video games with mass senseless killings. In the past, I think a lot of books written about warfare — novels, not actual accounts — were highly romanticized, visions of the noble soldier fighting alongside his countrymen for the safety and justice of those at home. Now war is often skewed through the glorification of violence. Conversely, the proliferation of war photo-journalists has led to an abundance of images, which I think are used to manipulate as often as to clarify reality. The hawks and doves divide, distilled. How do we come to a realistic view of warfare — both from an on-the-ground perspective as well as from an overarching policy standpoint — in ourselves, or the public at large?
On a slightly tangential note, and *please* do not let this derail all the comments, this is part of the reason why I think McCain’s considerable military experience means quite a lot. For certain things, there’s just no substitute for personal experience.