Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Web Means the End of Forgetting

By Jeffrey Rosen
New York Times

Four years ago, Stacy Snyder, then a 25-year-old teacher in training at Conestoga Valley High School in Lancaster, Pa., posted a photo on her MySpace page that showed her at a party wearing a pirate hat and drinking from a plastic cup, with the caption “Drunken Pirate.” After discovering the page, her supervisor at the high school told her the photo was “unprofessional,” and the dean of Millersville University School of Education, where Snyder was enrolled, said she was promoting drinking in virtual view of her under-age students. As a result, days before Snyder’s scheduled graduation, the university denied her a teaching degree. Snyder sued, arguing that the university had violated her First Amendment rights by penalizing her for her (perfectly legal) after-hours behavior. But in 2008, a federal district judge rejected the claim, saying that because Snyder was a public employee whose photo didn’t relate to matters of public concern, her “Drunken Pirate” post was not protected speech.

A Museum Display of Galileo Has a Saintly Feel

By Rachel Donadio
New York Times

FLORENCE, Italy — The Galileo case is often seen starkly as science’s first decisive blow against not only faith but also the power of the Roman Catholic Church. It has never been quite that simple, though. Galileo was a believer, devastated at being convicted, in 1633, of heresy for upending the biblical view of the universe.

Raising the Bar on Pet D├ęcor

By Sonia Zjawniski
New York Times

THERE was a time when pets were pets. They had bowls and beds, and that was about it. Then something changed. Slideshow

The Moral Naturalists

By David Brooks
New York Times


Where does our sense of right and wrong come from? Most people think it is a gift from God, who revealed His laws and elevates us with His love. A smaller number think that we figure the rules out for ourselves, using our capacity to reason and choosing a philosophical system to live by.

There’s Only One Way to Stop a Bully

By Susan Engel and Marlene Sandstrom
New York Times

HERE in Massachusetts, teachers and administrators are spending their summers becoming familiar with the new state law that requires schools to institute an anti-bullying curriculum, investigate acts of bullying and report the most serious cases to law enforcement officers.

Top Secret America

A Washington Post Investigation
[This investigation is extensive and is heating up the airwaves.]

Friday, July 23, 2010

101 Best Websites of 2010

By David A. Fryxell
Family Tree Magazine

From state vital records and censuses to historical books and immigration data, this year’s 101 Best Websites list features tools that can bust your brick walls -- but not your budget.

Proposition 8: Who gave in the gay marriage battle?

Los Angeles Times
(Includes a database)

Adopting a Child

By: Ginger | July 23, 2010 | Category: Home and Family
GovGab: Your U. S. Government Blog

Years ago, after a period of struggling with infertility and failed attempts to get pregnant, my husband and I began exploring the option ofadopting a child. We eventually decided to not pursue adoption, but for many couples unable to have a child, adoption is an excellent alternative. There are tens of thousands of children adopted every year in the U.S.

Death Does Not Deter Jellyfish Sting

Death Does Not Deter Jellyfish Sting
By Katie Zezima
New York Times

RYE, N.H. — The culprit sat in an open trash bag baking in the hot sun, raked to shore by a pitchfork-wielding lifeguard who paddled out on a surfboard.

How to Cook Camel

By Dustin Rubenstein
New York Times

When we asked for some goat meat from the butcher, we were instead delivered camel meat. For about $4.00, we were given more than four pounds of what looked like quite tender camel meat. Wilson cooked about two pounds the first night and it was indeed quite tasty. He cut the pieces very small and cooked them for a long time. I decided to try something a bit different the following night and cut the pieces a bit bigger and cooked them for less time, as I like my meat rarer than he does. This was a bad idea. It seems that the more you cook camel, the more tender it becomes. So we had what amounted to two pounds or more of rubber for dinner that night.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Pet therapy: How animals help us heal

By Edward T. Creagan, M.D.
Mayo Clinic

I'm part of a palliative medicine program at Mayo Clinic. Palliative medicine is an emerging specialty that focuses on quality of life and symptom control for patients with life-altering conditions. It's closely related to the hospice movement.

Kitchen land mines: 10 foods to avoid

By Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D.
Mayo Clinic

The news is awash with lists of restaurant items that are extremely high in calories, fat, sugar and salt. But what about the contents of your own cupboards and refrigerator? Do they hold land mines — foods that can blow up your healthy eating plan?

Decline in smoking means decline in state revenue

By Ali Eaves
Special to Stateline
Stateline.org

Americans are smoking less and less. That’s good news for public health, but it creates an ironically nasty side effect for many state budgets. They have grown dependent on an annual stream of money from tobacco companies, and that money is itself dependent on the number of people who consume cigarettes.

New Spice | Study like a scholar, scholar

How Green Is My Sneaker?

By Christina Brinkley
Wall Street Journal

Are your Nikes greener than your Adidas?

There will soon be an answer to this question, if the manufacturers have their way.

A group of roughly 100 well-known apparel brands and retailers have developed a software tool to help them measure the environmental impact of their apparel and footwear, from raw material to garbage dump. Ultimately, the companies hope to display an eco-value on a tag or package, much like the Energy Star rating of appliances. Interactive Graphic

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

In a Climate Quest, the Roof as White Knight
By John Collins Rudolf
New York Times

Since he took over as energy secretary last year, Steven Chu, a Nobel laureate in physics, has urged Americans to help cool the planet by painting their roofs a lighter color that reflects sunlight.
Gray wolf comeback worries Midwest
By Richard Mertens, Correspondent
Wall Street Journal.


For a long time Jim Heintz, an octogenarian farmer in Bruce, Wis., gave little thought to the wolves reoccupying his state. Then his calves started disappearing. Graphic.
Traveling with Pets: Airlines With the Most Dog Deaths
These Airlines Had More Dog Deaths and Injuries Than Any Other Carrier
By Scott Mayerowitz
ABC News

When Kendra and Travis Parks moved last month from Hawaii to Seattle, they sent their 6-year-old Great Dane Tucker in a custom-made kennel in the cargo hold of a Continental Airlinesplane. Unfortunately for Tucker, it wasn't a smooth trip.
Smoking & Tobacco Use
State Data: Tobacco Control State Highlights 2010
Center for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC)

Select a state from the drop-down menu or select a state from the map to see that state's highlights.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Meet the 'Modern' Crib
By Anjali Athavaley
Wall Street Journal

After the recall last month of 2.2 million cribs from seven manufacturers—the latest in a three-year wave of crib-safety recalls by the Consumer Products Safety Commission—parents-to-be may wonder: What exactly makes a safe crib?
A Water Fight Over Luxury Showers
By Stephen Power
Wall Street Journal

Gene Goforth sells showerheads—big ones, like the Raindance Imperial 600 AIR. Selling for as much as $5,457, it has a 24-inch spray face, 358 no-clog channels and a triple-massage option. "You can just stand under it, and it helps your psyche," says Mr. Goforth, who has one in his home.
What's the Right Way to Teach Teens to Drive?
By Joseph B. White
Wall Street Journal

I don't remember my high school drivers' education class being very exciting and fun. Excitement meant trouble. We didn't want trouble. We wanted a license.
Most Arguments in the Car Are Over Directions, Says Survey
By John R. Quain
New York Times

In the so-called war between the sexes one of the biggest sources of contention is the automobile — at least, according to a couple of recent surveys.
Study Suggests Painters Face Increased Risk of Bladder Cancer
More years spent in profession meant higher chances of developing disease.
U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
MedlinePlus

TUESDAY, July 20 (HealthDay News) -- Professional painters may face an increased risk for bladder cancer and that risk seems to rise with the number of years they work, a new study suggests.

Monday, July 19, 2010

What Your Mail Services Won't Tell You
Edited by Nikki Waller
Wall Street Journal

Here are a few facts your various mail services won't tell you.
Surf's Up: The Rise of Stand-up Paddle Boards
Far From the Ocean, Fitness Craze Appeals to Those Wanting a Total Body Workout on the Water, Minus the Waves
By Kevin Helliker
Wall Street Journal

When Chris Krause hops on a board each morning to surf Lake Michigan, the water is usually flat. But who cares? Instead of catching a wave, Mr. Krause is catching a workout, by standing on his board and paddling for 60 minutes.
Assessment of the Potential for Cross Contamination of Food Products by Reusable Shopping Bags
Charles P. Gerba, David Williams, and Ryan G. Sinclair
Loma Linda University
School of Public Health
Fact Sheet | Workplace Shootings | July 2010
Bureau of Labor Statistics
U. S. Department of Labor
Ice Cream: July is National Ice Cream Month

Ice Cream Sales and Trends
What's in the Ice Cream Aisle?: Definitions of Frozen Dessert Products
Ice Cream Labeling
From the Cow to the Cone: How Ice Cream is Made
The History of Ice Cream
The History of the Ice Cream Cone
Kids Who Do Poorly in School More Likely to Become Bullies
Youngsters who have trouble resolving problems with others also at risk of becoming bullies, victims or both, researchers say
By Robert Preidt
MedlinePlus

FRIDAY, July 16 (HealthDay News) -- Youngsters and teens who lack social problem-solving skills are more likely to become bullies, victims or both, while those who also do poorly at school are even more likely to become bullies, according to a new study.
Flu Vaccine Via Skin Patch Shows Promise in Mice
New technology uses painless 'microneedles' to deliver immunization
Medline Plus

SUNDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- Wouldn't it be nice if you could get the flu vaccine through a stick-on skin patch instead of a shot?

Experiments in mice show that using skin patches containing tiny, painless "microneedles" to deliver the influenza vaccine may someday be a viable alternative to traditional shots.