Well, At Least We Have Clean Underwear

I haven't the energy to be too outraged tonight, so you'll have to make do with a pretty picture and some links. The dryer quit, and we tried to fix it, and it melted, and we immediately regretted not having a professional come in to look at it, and so I spent more time than I like (which, let's be honest, is 'any') at a laundromat. But we have clean clothes for at least a week, and I'll worry about the rest later.

Here's the pretty picture first:

  • Library Land
  • Health, Science, & Technology
    • Ancient Manure is Latest Clue in Biblical Mystery  "A team of archaeologists in Israel’s Timna Valley has uncovered evidence that appears to shed light on the biblical story of King Solomon, known for both his great wisdom and his enormous fortune. Their discovery of 3,000-year-old manure in an ancient mining camp suggests the site may have housed extensive operations in the 10th century B.C.—right around when King Solomon is believed to have harnessed just such industrial-scale metal production to build his famous Holy Temple in Jerusalem."
    • The High Price of Insulin Is Literally Killing People "As of press time, a global GoFundMe search yielded 19,281 results for people seeking money to help pay for diabetes-related care, with 1,365,758 results for others crowdsourcing to raise money to help cover medical costs. Under a GOP healthcare plan, those numbers only threaten to rise. Not everyone reaches their goal, and sometimes the money arrives too late."
  • Randomnesses
    • Martyrdom in Three Movements "Three black children. Three American children. Three murdered children. Across different generations, in different inconvenience stores across the country, they are forever bound by martyrdom.... Though speaking of them as martyrs may make us feel better about their deaths, we cannot pretend that they willingly gave up their lives for our empowerment. Today, Emmett Till should have been a 75-year-old who plays with his grandchildren on the weekends. Today, Latasha Harlins should have been a 41-year-old who just went to see her daughter’s school play last week. And today, Trayvon Martin should have been a 22-year-old who is looking forward to graduating from college next month and to a world of possibilities after that."
    • Revealed: the TRUTH behind the moon landing and 9/11 conspiracies  "So, should we stop writing off conspiracy theorists, and instead view them — as Mathur does — as offering a critical commentary on our times? From Illuminati to ID cards, the latest crop of Cambridge research suggests that the history of weird ideas says as much about all of us, as it does about the people who believe them."
  • International 
    • Putin says expects 'fake' gas attacks to discredit Syria's Assad "President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that Russia had information that the United States was planning to launch new missile strikes on Syria, and that there were plans to fake chemicals weapons attacks there." It's so rough to see a relationship start to go sour. 
    • North Korea State Media Warns of Nuclear Strike if Provoked "North Korean state media warned on Tuesday of a nuclear attack on the United States at any sign of American aggression as a U.S. Navy strike group steamed toward the western Pacific."
    • Chechen police 'kidnap and torture gay men'  "Gay men are fleeing brutal persecution in Chechnya, where police are holding more than 100 people and torturing some of them in an anti-gay crackdown, Russian activists say.... A government spokesman called the reports 'lies' and said homosexual people 'simply don't exist in the republic'."
  • U.S. News
    • The Deeper Scandal of That Brutal United Video "Sometimes, a shocking controversy like this one is both freakish and representative. Indeed, this incident is both an extraordinary occurrence—overbookings are common yet rarely involve thuggish yanking—and also a dramatic reminder of the profoundly unequal, and even morally scandalous, relationship between consumers and corporations in industries where a handful of large companies dominate the sector.... The first thought that I had watching the outrageous footage of a passenger being dragged through an aisle like a bag of trash was that this should never happen. But fundamentally, this is an old story: Companies in concentrated industries, like the airlines, have legal cover to break the most basic promise to consumers without legally breaking their contracts. The video is a scandal. But so is the law."
    • Spicer Says Even Hitler Didn't Use Chemical Weapons Wait, what? "Minutes later, Spicer delivered a garbled defense of his remarks in which he tried to differentiate between Hitler's actions and the gas attack on Syrian civilians last week.... 'I think when you come to sarin gas, there was no, he (Hitler) was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing,' Spicer said. 'There was clearly ... I understand your point, thank you. There was not ... He brought them into the Holocaust center I understand that.'" Um. I think he just made it worse. So, it's OK to gas Jews or the Romani - just not your "own people"?
    • What's Trump's plan for Syria? Five different policies in two weeks "For years, Trump advocated against intervention in Syria’s war, except to attack the Islamic State militant group in a related but separate conflict. That policy seemed to end on Thursday, after the chemical weapons attack on Khan Sheikhoun on 4 April. Yet almost as soon as Trump ordered retaliatory strikes on a Syrian airbase from which the US said the regime had launched the chemical attack, his aides suggested that the one-off strike had satisfied US objectives.  Until they contradicted themselves again." 
    • Trump Is Just The Latest President To Follow The Path From Isolationist To Hawk "During last year’s presidential campaign, Donald Trump....sounded almost isolationist at times in his insistence that the country would not rush to war and would seek to avoid entanglements in defense and trade. At several points, he spoke out against the idea of intervening in Syria, specifically. But it took less than three months in office for Trump to change directions and get involved in Syria.Trump is hardly the first president to campaign on peace and govern in war." Heck, at this point, it's practically tradition; I think we need a new tradition, though. I'd like to see someone campaign on peace - and actually govern in peace.
    • Trump on pace to surpass 8 years of Obama's travel spending in 1 year "The outsized spending on travel stands in stark relief to Trump's calls for belt tightening across the federal government and the fact that he regularly criticized Obama for costing the American taxpayer money every time he took a trip."


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