The Guardian

20 Predictions for the Next 25 Years

The Guardian recently did a piece called "25 Predictions for the Next 25 Years", with experts in different fields providing predictions in their field of knowledge.  Here's the link:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2011/jan/02/25-predictions-25-years

What's your take on this?  What about #2, which predicts a popular revolt in the UK against the banking system?

Science Upended Again: The Fountain of Youth and Living Clouds

— Filed under: Breaking News, Science & Technology
The Fountain of Youth by Lucas Cranach the Elder

Image via Wikipedia

Just when we think that we have a grasp on what's possible — on the outer limits of what science is likely to achieve or learn — something comes along to turn all that on its head. If, like many people (including myself), you thought that science would probably never discover anything resembling a fountain of youth, it turns out you were wrong. Not only have scientists recently succeeded in slowing down the aging process in mice, they have actually reversed it.

According to PopSci, scientists at Harvard "turned unhealthy old mice into youthful versions of themselves." Ronald DePinho, the lead scientist working on the project, told the Guardian:

"What we saw in these animals was not a slowing down or stabilisation of the ageing process. We saw a dramatic reversal – and that was unexpected... These were severely aged animals, but after a month of treatment they showed a substantial restoration, including the growth of new neurons in their brains."

Wikileaks: What's The Point?

— Filed under: Breaking News, Politics & Government, Science & Technology
 History Is The Only Guidebook Civil...

Image by Fräulein Schiller via Flickr

As much as I like the idea of a rebellious man-without-a-country causing grief to all the world's governments in the name of freedom, I must admit I'm having some serious misgivings in light of the latest Wikileaks' release.

I'll let you read about the latest bombshells at the New York Times special section or The Guardian. What I'm having trouble with is understanding exactly how these leaks are supposed to help anyone. I'm not alone. As Ta-Nehisi Coates, senior editor of the The Atlantic puts it:

"What responsibility does Assange have to this country? Does American media exist to serve the immediate good of the American public? Or is there some longer, greater, good in disclosing these dispatches? Is information, in and of itself, good?"

"War Porn" or "Window to Reality"?

— Filed under: Breaking News, Politics & Government

Not even two weeks after classified documents released by Wikileaks made many people question the validity of the war in Afghanistan, here comes powerful new evidence of something worth fighting for.

A fiery controversy has been stirred up by a magazine cover photo depicting a beautiful young Afghan woman who has had her nose and ears cut off by the Taliban. Accompanied by the bold statement "What Happens if We Leave Afghanistan", some are now decrying the use of the shocking image as a manipulative effort to convince the public to accept continuing military action. Some are even calling it "war porn" and "Afghansploitation". Priyamvada Gopal at the Guardian says that the magazine cover is an oversimplification which does nothing to help solve a complex problem. According to Gopal, "Feminists have long argued that invoking the condition of women to justify occupation is a cynical ploy, and the Time cover already stands accused of it."

"Biggest Leak Ever" Suggests Pakistan is Aiding the Taliban

— Filed under: Breaking News, Politics & Government
TUPAK, AFGHANISTAN - FEBRUARY 24: A child look...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

As the longest war in American history plods along in its ninth year, whistleblowing site Wikileaks has released thousands of pages of classified documents relating to the conflict in Afghanistan, which have subsequently been summarized and published by the New York Times and other online newspapers. The Guardian is calling it "the biggest leak in intelligence history."… Continues …

Stoning In the Modern World

— Filed under: Breaking News, Politics & Government, People & Culture
all alone bloody stone

Image by TeeF86 via Flickr

At some time in the near future, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani will have rocks thrown at her until she dies. She'll be buried up to her chest, and then stoned. The stones must be big enough to cause pain, but not big enough to kill her immediately. If Ashtiani can somehow wriggle free, her sentence will be commuted, but what's more likely is that she'll experience a painful death - unless the government of Iran can be convinced to give her a reprieve.

What was her crime? After receiving 99 lashes in front of her children, she admitted to adultery, a confession she later retracted. She was then found guilty using "judge's knowledge", which The Guardian calls "a loophole that allows for subjective judicial rulings where no conclusive evidence is present."… Continues …

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