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Articles Posted by BenLurkin

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  • Major Effort Underway to Repeal California Gas Tax Hike

    10/18/2017 5:45:58 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 8 replies
    It’s the second Republican initiative aimed at repealing the tax increase, passed by lawmakers in April to generate $52 billion over 10 years for road and bridge repairs. The gas hike includes a 20-cent per gallon increase in diesel taxes, a 12-cent per gallon hike in gas taxes and a 5.75 percent increase in diesel sales taxes. Vehicle license fees will be raised an average $38 per vehicle. Drivers will also face a new annual fee to be paid with their vehicle registration, ranging from $25 to $175 depending on the value of their vehicle. The taxes and fees will...
  • Plastic Coyotes Deployed To Ward Off Sea Lions At Newport [California] Harbor

    10/18/2017 5:37:42 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 17 replies
    cbs2la ^ | October 18, 2017 2:12 PM
    Officials have reportedly spent roughly $200 on the statues and placed them at strategic points along the docks at Newport Harbor. The effort carries with it a twinge of irony: Newport along with several neighboring O.C. cities have been dealing with ongoing coyote activity in the area and have even gone so far as to allow residents in Huntington Beach to trap or kill the animals.
  • Orbital ATK Eyes Investments in Advanced Rocket Motors

    10/18/2017 5:25:01 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 6 replies ^ | October 18, 2017 06:41pm ET | Sandra Erwin, Space News |
    A new market for super high-speed weapons is fueling investments in rocket engine technologies as companies seek to gain an edge. The industry foresees a demand for advanced rocket engines, particularly if the U.S. military moves to acquire revolutionary missiles that fly at hypersonic speeds. The Pentagon expects to invest $2 billion over the next five years in high-speed weapons including lasers and hypersonic missiles  that travel at five times the speed of sound. ... Large solid propellant rocket motors are critical systems for the United States to be able to launch payloads into space or warheads in intercontinental ballistic missiles. The industry...
  • 400 Mysterious Ancient Stone Structures Discovered in Saudi Arabia

    10/18/2017 4:58:19 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 14 replies
    Live Science ^ | October 17, 2017 07:02am ET | Owen Jarus,Contributor |
    Discovered mainly through satellite images, a few of the gates are actually located on the side of a volcanic dome that once spewed basaltic lava, researchers found. The gates "are stone-built, the walls roughly made and low," David Kennedy, a professor at the University of Western Australia, wrote in a paper set to be published in the November issue of the journal Arabian Archaeology and Epigraphy. The gates "appear to be the oldest man-made structures in the landscape," Kennedy noted, adding that "no obvious explanation of their purpose can be discerned." The smallest of the gates extends about 43 feet...
  • You can exercise yourself to death, says new study

    10/17/2017 8:40:14 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 33 replies
    It was suggested high levels of exercise over time caused stress on the arteries leading to higher coronary artery calcification, also known as CAC. ... The presence and amount of CAC is a significant warning sign to doctors that a patient may be at risk for developing heart disease and a signal to consider early preventive care. ... Unique to the new study is the evaluation of long-term exercise patterns, from young adulthood into middle age. The study group had eight follow-up examinations over 25 years, from 1985 through 2011, starting at age 18 to 30 and finishing at 43...
  • Police Commission approves controversial year-long test of drones by LAPD

    10/17/2017 8:19:12 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies
    The 3-1 vote was met by jeers from dozens of people who crowded the Police Commission’s meeting room, many of whom repeatedly urged the civilian oversight panel to reject the proposal. “Shame on you!” some shouted. “Shame on you!” That frustration spilled outside the LAPD’s downtown headquarters as protesters settled in the middle of 1st and Main streets, chanting and holding signs as they denounced the decision. Officers ultimately led four people away in handcuffs. Drones have been hailed by law enforcement across the country as a valuable technology that could help find missing hikers or monitor armed suspects without...
  • Doctors Baffled After Kentucky Boy Falls Into Deep Sleep for 11 Days

    10/17/2017 7:59:33 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 37 replies
    A 7-year-old Kentucky boy fell into a deep sleep for 11 days recently... Amy Shaw told television station WDRB ... that it happened after she and her son Wyatt attended a wedding in which she described the little boy as being the life of the party. While she expected her son to be tired that night, she could never have anticipated that he would not wake up for 11 days. ... He is having trouble walking and talking, but has shown signs of improvement. Doctors woke the boy up with the help of a drug normally used to treat seizure; however,...
  • Bad Blood? Why Transfusions from Women May Be Risky for Men

    10/17/2017 5:31:25 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 23 replies ^ | October 17, 2017 11:54am ET | Rachael Rettner,
    The study, published today (Oct. 17) in the journal JAMA, found that men who received blood transfusions from previously pregnant female donors were 13 percent more likely to die during the study period, compared with men who received blood transfusions from male donors. In contrast, men who received blood transf usions from women who had never been pregnant were not at increased risk of death over the study period, compared with men who received transfusions from other men, the study found. And women who received blood from women either with or without a history of pregnancy were not at increased...
  • The JFK Document Dump Could Be a Fiasco

    10/17/2017 12:02:22 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 38 replies ^ | 10/17/2017 | "Lisa"
    As it stands now, the document release this month will be a logistical nightmare, with the public suddenly flooded with a huge online library of documents—tens of thousands in total—that will be, at first, mostly incomprehensible even to experienced students of the assassination. The National Archives, abandoning its plans to release the documents in batches over the course of several months, said this week that it will instead release everything at once – all on the same day – sometime between now and the deadline on Oct. 26. ... Many are known to involve a mysterious chapter in the history...
  • 2 Neutron Stars Collided, So Are They a Black Hole Now?

    10/17/2017 11:50:49 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 8 replies ^ | October 16, 2017 | Harrison Tasoff,
    The observations indicate that the waves and light came from a pair of merging neutron stars about 130 million light-years away, according to a news conference on Monday Oct. 16, 2017. Neutron stars are the incredibly dense remnants of stars that have exploded in supernovas. The two that merged were 1.6 and 1.1 times as massive as our sun, but each was no wider than Washington, D.C., according to a statement by the Space Telescope Science Institute. As the stars spiraled into each other, they sent gravitational waves through the universe and released tremendous amounts of light when they finally...
  • North Korea says ‘a nuclear war may break out any moment’

    10/16/2017 4:40:57 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 30 replies
    Washington Post ^ | October 16 at 7:26 PM | Edith M. Lederer
    Kim In Ryong told the U.N. General Assembly’s disarmament committee that North Korea is the only country in the world that has been subjected to “such an extreme and direct nuclear threat” from the United States since the 1970s — and said the country has the right to possess nuclear weapons in self-defense. He pointed to large-scale military exercises every year using “nuclear assets” and said what is more dangerous is what he called a U.S. plan to stage a “secret operation aimed at the removal of our supreme leadership.” ... He told the disarmament committee that the Democratic People’s...
  • Drone collides with commercial aeroplane in Canada

    10/16/2017 1:23:28 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 20 replies
    BBC ^ | October 16, 2017
    The drone struck one of the plane's wings, while six passengers and two crew members were aboard. The aircraft sustained only minor damage and was able to land safely, the Canadian transport minister said. The Skyjet flight was heading to Quebec City's Jean Lesage International Airport when the drone hit it on 12 October. ... In a statement, transport minister Marc Garneau said: "Although the vast majority of drone operators fly responsibly, it was our concern for incidents like this that prompted me to take action and issue interim safety measures restricting where recreational drones could be flown. "I would...
  • SpaceX adds mystery “Zuma” mission, Iridium-4 aims for Vandenberg landing

    10/16/2017 1:16:54 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 10 replies ^ | October 16, 2017 | Chris Gebhardt
    It’s not often that one can point to a last-minute (from the public side) addition of a mission to a launch manifest – let alone one that manages to stay secret until 30 days before the opening of its launch campaign. But that is the case for a mystery Falcon 9 mission that is now set to launch between Koreasat-5A and CRS-13/Dragon. The mystery mission, codename Zuma, is known on its FCC launch license as Mission 1390 and will see a Falcon 9 rocket launch from LC-39A at the Kennedy Space Center before performing a RTLS (Return To Launch Site)...
  • ...'terrorist arsonists' that have claimed dozens of lives in Portugal and Spain

    10/16/2017 12:19:31 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 6 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | 16 October, 2017 | Rita Sobot
    Wildfires have killed at least 39 people across Portugal and Spain as hundreds of blazes were fanned by strong winds caused by a hurricane, authorities said on Monday. Thirty-five people - including a one-month-old baby - in Portugal have died and dozens have been injured, most of them firefighters, during fires raging in central and northern areas of the country.  Portugal's civil protection service said as of Monday morning, firefighters were fighting 145 separate blazes across the country, dozens of which are considered to still be serious.  In the northwestern Spanish region of Galicia, authorities said that four people had died,...
  • ASRC 3D Prints Fuel Injector Prototype for RD-180 Successor

    10/16/2017 12:08:06 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies ^ | | October 15, 2017 08:49am ET | Caleb Henry, SpaceNews
    ASRC of Beltsville, Md., has test fired a subscale propellant injector built via additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, paving the way for a version that could support whichever engine United Launch Alliance chooses to replace the Russian-built RD-180 on the Atlas 5 rocket. ASRC's Federal Technical Services division conducted the full-power test in April, retiring risk on an engine component that could potentially be built in a quarter of the time of previous techniques. We reduced production time for this injector to eight days, which would have been over a month using traditional machining," Joseph Sims, ASRC Federal Technical Services project...
  • Philippines: Last leaders of IS-tied siege killed in Marawi

    10/15/2017 9:54:55 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 27 replies
    S F Gate ^ | 9:38 pm, Sunday, October 15, 2017 | Jim Gomez
    Four military and police officials told The Associated Press that Isnilon Hapilon, who is listed among the FBI's most-wanted terror suspects, and Omarkhayam Maute were killed in a gunbattle and their bodies were found Monday in Marawi. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not allowed to make a public announcement yet of the latest developments in Marawi, a mosque-studded center of Islamic faith in the south of the predominantly Roman Catholic nation. Defense Secretary Lorenzana later confirmed the militant deaths. "Yes, they are confirmed dead," Lorenzana said, adding DNA tests would be done on the remains...
  • AirAsia flight returns to Perth after mid-air scare

    10/15/2017 9:42:27 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 6 replies
    An AirAsia Indonesia flight has been forced to turn back to Australia after pilots were alerted to a possible loss of cabin pressure, airport officials say. Flight QZ535, bound for the Indonesian island of Bali, changed course about 25 minutes after take-off on Sunday. The Airbus A320, carrying 151 people, landed safely at Perth Airport. ... A video taken on the plane, broadcast by local media, shows oxygen masks hanging from the ceiling and one person shouting "passengers get down, passengers get down". ... "AirAsia apologises to passengers for any inconvenience caused,"
  • Gaye LeBaron: Tubbs fire revives memory of a blaze that now haunts Santa Rosa

    10/15/2017 7:24:15 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 4 replies ^ | October 14, 2017, 5:57PM | Gaye LeBaron
    Three years ago, I wrote one of those anniversary pieces that columnists love so dearly. It marked 50 years since two devastating wildfires raged through Sonoma County at the same time, threatening both Santa Rosa and the Sonoma Valley. The Hanly fire and the Nunn’s Canyon fire of late September 1964 were tagged in our files as the most devastating in the county’s history. The column revisited the Hanly fire and was a bit preachy in places, suggesting (as columnists do — relentlessly) that there were lessons that week might have taught us. But didn’t. The Hanly fire and the...
  • Audit documents [California] state employees sleeping on the job, riding in limos...

    10/15/2017 2:21:30 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 9 replies
    L A Times ^ | 10/14/2017 | Morgan Cook
    UC Davis professor spent $996 for three limousine trips and collected $197 in other improper travel reimbursements during two months in 2015, according to a new state report. A state Department of Industrial Relations employee was photographed numerous times sleeping at his work station or texting and reading on his personal cellphone. The employee’s estimated “down time” over a roughly yearlong period cost taxpayers an estimated $5,411 An administrative office within the Department of Corrections hosted an illegal raffle for charity in December 2016. Tickets cost $1 each, and prizes included gift baskets containing ammunition and alcohol. State auditors said...
  • Death Toll in Vehicle Explosion in Somalia Rises to at Least 230

    10/15/2017 12:55:13 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 19 replies
    KTLA ^ | 10/15/2017 | cnn wire
    At least 230 people were killed in a double car bomb blast in the Somali capital of Mogdishu.... ... The first explosion destroyed dozens of stalls and the popular Safari Hotel in the heart of the city. Footage from the scene showed damaged buildings and a burning truck at the first blast site. A large white building had collapsed into a pile of rubble and other structures appeared blackened and destroyed. Qatar’s Embassy was also damaged, according to a statement from its Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The embassy’s charge d’affaires suffered minor injuries, the statement said. Minutes after the first...