Friday, October 21, 2011

Friday Hope Blogging

The FBI is finally updating its definition of rape:

The Uniform Crime Report Subcommittee voted unanimously to change the definition of rape, which had not been changed for 80 years (!) and rape will now be defined as, “penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.”
San Francisco will require CPCs to stop lying:
On Tuesday, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted 10-1 to approve a city ordinance that would prevent crisis pregnancy centers from spreading false or misleading advertisements about their facilities. The ordinance requires that crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) display signs indicating whether they offer comprehensive reproductive health services, including abortions and contraception, and whether a licensed medical professional is on staff.
Speaking of which, Rick Santorum has vowed to put an end to contraception if elected, on the grounds that "it’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.” There was a time when this might have been an attention-grabbing stance, but as the Right thrusts itself ever deeper into the nether regions of sexual delirium, Santorum's in danger of being Left Behind. Who needs him when we've got Mark Driscoll?
[M]asturbation can be a form of homosexuality because it is a sexual act that does not involve a woman.
It's clearly time to bring back Dr. Moodie's apparatus for boys! If leather-and-chrome genital bondage devices can't stop this nation's epidemic of perversion, what on earth can? It'll create jobs, too: We've got a country full of unemployed steampunk designers who've been dying for an opportunity like this.

Anyway. An Oklahoma judge has blocked a particularly stupid and brutal anti-abortion law:

The temporary injunction prevents the bill from going into effect on Nov. 1. Passed earlier this year by the GOP-controlled Legislature and signed by Gov. Mary Fallin, the measure requires doctors to follow the strict guidelines and protocols authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and prohibits off-label uses of the drugs. It also requires doctors to examine the women, document certain medical conditions and schedule follow-up appointments.

Opponents of the measure say the off-label use of drugs — such as changing a recommended dosage or prescribing it for different symptoms than the drug was initially approved for — is common, and that the measure would prevent doctors from using their best medical judgment.

And a federal judge has blocked a DoE uranium-leasing plan on Colorado public lands:
In a major victory for clean air, clean water and endangered species on public lands, a federal judge on Tuesday halted the Department of Energy’s 42-square-mile uranium-leasing program that threatened the Dolores and San Miguel rivers in southwestern Colorado. Five conservation groups had sued to halt the leasing program, charging that the Department of Energy was failing to adequately protect the environment or analyze the full impacts of renewed uranium mining on public lands.
Apple apparently has some interesting solar technology patents:

The US Patent and Trademark Office just revealed that Apple has been granted 20 new patents which focus on next generation solar technology. According to PatentlyApple, the patents not only cover solar technology being used to extend the battery lives of personal devices, but will also see the development of a cool new product – a specialized back panel reflector that uses sunlight to illuminate laptop screens.

California has approved cap-and-trade regulations:

The most populous U.S. state is moving ahead with the plan years after federal regulators rejected a similar idea for the nation, partly on concerns of the effect on businesses.

The California Air Resources Board voted 8-0 to adopt the market regulations, which officials said are critical to the state's goal of cutting carbon emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 -- about a 22 percent reduction from forecasted business-as-usual output.

A Koch-funded climate study group has driven yet another stake into Anthony Watts' shriveled heart:

Watts had famously promised “I’m prepared to accept whatever result they produce, even if it proves my premise wrong"....

But BEST just released a whole paper devoted to debunking Watts’ life work – his effort to smear climate scientists by accusing them of knowingly using bad temperature stations to rig their results.

Shockingly, Watts is not actually prepared to accept their results.

Nearly 300 large investors are clamoring for a climate treaty:

The group of 285 investors issued a joint statement emphasizing the urgent need for policy action which stimulates private sector investment in climate change solutions, creates jobs, and ensures the long-term sustainability and stability of the world economic system.

The statement represents the largest group, by both number of signatories and assets under management, ever to call for policy action on climate change. Signatories to the statement include financial institutions, state treasurers, controllers, pension fund leaders, asset managers, insurance groups, faith groups and foundations worldwide.
A federal judge in Brazil has ruled against the Belo Monte dam:
The environmental license for the controversial Belo Monte dam violates the constitutional rights of indigenous communities and is therefore illegal, ruled a federal judge in Brazil on Monday.

Judge Selene Maria de Almeida concluded that the 2005 decree that authorized the dam is illegal because Congress failed to carry out a consultation process with communities that will be affected by the dam. The consultation process is a right guaranteed to indigenous communities under Brazil's constitution.
Michelle Bachmann's NH staff has quit en masse:
Pindell scoops that Michele Bachmann's entire paid campaign team - roughly a half-dozen staffers - in New Hampshire has quit out of frustration with the campaign.

They were going to do it even earlier, he reports, but didn't because it would have harmed the candidate.

More schadenfreude, courtesy of Herman Cain and Marco Rubio.

Last, rumor has it that we may actually leave Iraq. I know intellectually that this is a good thing, but it doesn't make me feel much of anything beyond dull rage.

President Obama will address reports that all U.S. troops will be withdrawn from Iraq by the end of year in a statement scheduled for 12:45PM ET. President Obama's statement comes following a discussion he had with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Last week, reports indicated that the U.S. had abandoned plans to keep forces in Iraq past the December 31 withdrawal deadline and various cable reports now are indicating the decision has been finalized. 40,000 troops are currently in Iraq.

The Turconi Project (via The Bioscope). A throwable panoramic camera. Photos by Kim Keever (via Coudal). Jeu d’Herbes Medicinales. Photos of former battlefields by Peter Hebeisen. Images from Niels Klim's journey underground. The Light of Modernity in Buenos Aires (via wood s lot). Old and Interesting, "a history of domestic paraphernalia." Retro Tesco. Nigerian traffic control. Optical effects of special relativity. Ice cream and architectural loss. Russian postcards of St. Petersburg. Fire and smoke. And photographs by Ferdinand von Hochstetter:

(Photo at top: "Wendelstein" by Peter Keetman, 1950. Via Luminous Lint.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a lovely way to round out the week. Thank you.