Sunday Radiators

NEUTRONS ON A PLANE: Want to experience space weather? It’s easy. Just step onboard an airplane. Recently, and the students of Earth to Sky Calculus have been monitoring cosmic radiation levels in the cabins of commercial jets. Measurements of X-rays and gamma-rays show that travelers absorb the equivalent of one or more dental X-rays on a typical flight across the USA. But X-rays and gamma-rays represent only a fraction of the total radiation evnvironment. On July 23, 2015, for the first time, they carried a neutron bubble chamber onboard. Here is what the chamber looked like at the end of a 5 hour flight from Boston to Las Vegas:

@ SPACEWEATHER of course

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Saturday Savages

No war can compare with the war we wage on each other.

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Thundering Thursday

“This is a public health emergency that is literally killing people.”

This stark, shocking warning about the US Navy’s war-gaming in the Pacific Northwest comes from Dr. James Dahlgren, a doctor of occupational and environmental medicine who is also a diplomat of the American Board of Internal Medicine.

He spoke with Truthout about how Navy warplanes flying in and out of Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island, as well as the Navy’s OLF [Outlying Field] Coupeville in Washington State’s Puget Sound, are generating chronic exposure to noise levels well in excess of 80 decibels.

“We first thought it was just hearing loss … there are several very real life-threatening issues [that result from] living with this.”

To provide an idea of relative loudness of sounds: A vacuum cleaner is 70 decibels, heavy truck traffic is around 80 decibels, a chainsaw is 90 decibels, and being within approximately 100 feet of a jet engine is 140 decibels. Exposure to 140 decibels may cause immediate and permanent hearing damage or loss, as well as bleeding from the ears.

Dahr Jamail @ TRUTHOUT

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Hightower Wednesday

That goes for the growers too!

That goes for the growers too!

The Canadian rocker and master storyteller Neil Young says: “Music is a universal language.”

Yes, and when created by a people’s champion like him, music can bring down the high and mighty — just as Joshua’s trumpeters brought down the walls of Jericho.

Or, in Young’s case, the walls of Monsanto.

He’s released powerful new album called The Monsanto Years. It takes on the arrogant gene manipulator and avaricious pesticide merchant for its relentless attempts to profiteer at the expense of family farmers, consumers, people’s democratic rights, and nature itself.

On the title track, Young sings: “The farmer knows he’s got to grow what he can sell, Monsanto, Monsanto/ So he signs a deal for GMOs that makes life hell with Monsanto, Monsanto/ Every year he buys the patented seeds/ Poison-ready, they’re what the corporation needs, Monsanto.”


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Tuesday Toast


Campgrounds were evacuated and residents put on alert Monday as a California wildfire threatened hundreds of structures in the Sierra national forest, one of nine blazes burning across the state.

Across California and other western states, hot, dry and windy conditions fuelled by the ongoing drought have hampered firefighters’ efforts to contain more wildfires than usual.

Since 1 January, firefighters in California have responded to about 1,300 more blazes than usual for the period.

“As we continue to get deeper into the summer, conditions are only going to be drier,” said state fire spokesman Daniel Berlant.

A look at the latest wildfires and efforts to bring them under control:


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Monday Jailbirds

Self Explanatory

Self Explanatory

A federal judge in California has ruled that the Obama administration’s detention of children and their mothers who were caught crossing the border illegally is a serious violation of a longstanding court settlement, and that the families should be released as quickly as possible.

In a decision late Friday roundly rejecting the administration’s arguments for holding the families, Judge Dolly M. Gee of Federal District Court for the Central District of California found that two detention centers in Texas that the administration opened last summer fail to meet minimum legal requirements of the 1997 settlement for facilities housing children.

Judge Gee also found that migrant children had been held in “widespread deplorable conditions” in Border Patrol stations after they were first caught, and she said the authorities had “wholly failed” to provide the “safe and sanitary” conditions required for children even in temporary cells.


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