Joshua Ponath

75 Flips | 2 Magazines | 9 Likes | 2 Followers | @jponath | I'm here to pass along my interests

America's Embrace of Ignorance

It's pretty easy to see in this election cycle that America has hit a new low in stupidity. I like to collectively call it "The Stupid." The acceptance and glorification of ignorance and anti-intellectualism into our political system is one of the most dangerous threats to our country. It stems …

It Came Up In The Debate: Here Are 3 Things To Know About 'Operation Wetback'

Tuesday night, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump doubled down on his plan to deport the nearly 11 million immigrants illegally in the U.S.<p>As an example that it could be done, Trump brought up a program instituted by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on June 9, 1954.<p>Trump said Eisenhower …

Tractor beams of science fiction becoming a reality

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The tractor beam, a staple of science fiction including "Star Wars" and "Star Trek" that is employed to grab spaceships and other things remotely, is entering the realm of reality.<p>Researchers on Tuesday said they have developed a tractor beam that uses high-amplitude sound …

The Gateway Fundamentalism of Kim Davis and Her Supporters

<i>Creative Commons image Kim Davis Billboard, courtesy of Tengrain on Flickr.</i><p>In theory the government of the United State of America operates under a separation of church and state even though contradictions are rife. We refer to God in the Pledge of Allegiance. When asked to swear an oath, once …

People Die Because of This Man: The Real Reason We Never Get Gun Control, No Matter How Many People Get Gunned Down

Although 26-year-old Christopher Harper-Mercer pulled the trigger on the gun that killed nine people at Umpqua Community College in Oregon on Thursday, Wayne LaPierre, the fanatic executive vice president of the National Rifle Association, also has blood on his hands.<p>LaPierre, who has worked for …

The Village That Will Be Swept Away

Residents of Newtok, Alaska, voted to relocate as erosion destroyed their land. That was the easy part.<p>NEWTOK, Alaska—Two decades ago, the people of this tiny village came to terms with what had become increasingly obvious: They could no longer fight back the rising waters.<p>Their homes perched on a …

Stephen Hawking explains how to (sort-of) escape a black hole

<i>This post has been corrected.</i><p>If you find yourself stuck inside a black hole, Stephen Hawking says not to panic: You may die, but all traces of your existence may not be lost forever.<p>Current science suggests that a black hole’s gravity is so strong that absolutely nothing—not even light—can escape …

Physics

Donald Trump and the Art of the Squeal

In the latest poll, Donald Trump leads the pack of announced Republican presidential candidates. This should surprise no one, least of all his Republican challengers. The Republican Party created the water in which Trump swims, much as it spawned the Tea Party which it now sometimes regrets. Trump …

How To Make Better Health Predictions From Our Gut Microbes

We all know people who act very differently depending on the company they find themselves in. They can be delightful in some circles, and obnoxious in others. The same principles apply to the microbes in our bodies—our microbiome. They have important roles in digestion, immunity, and health, but …

Mike Huckabee: Comparing LGBT rights with civil rights is “an insult to African-Americans”

“That was <em>true</em> discrimination and it was horrible”<p>On Tuesday, GOP presidential candidate and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee said that to equate the fight for LGBT rights with civil rights was to "insult" the black community.<p>"People are saying, 'Well, churches shouldn't have a …

Author of 'Lies My Teacher Told Me' claims American textbooks have been lying about the Civil War

For example, one of the best-selling US history textbooks, "The American Journey," states that even though "Lincoln and the Republicans had promised not to disturb slavery where it existed," many people in the South didn't trust them and feared they would "not protect Southern rights and …

Satanist takes Megyn Kelly to law school

She was confused by different constitutions being different things despite having “a lot of similar words”<p>On "The Kelly File" Wednesday night, host Megyn Kelly spoke to the Satanic Temple's Lucien Greaves about the decision not to erect a statue of Baphomet at the Oklahoma state capitol now that …

GREECE JUST TAUGHT CAPITALISTS A LESSON ABOUT WHAT CAPITALISM REALLY MEANS

The vote is huge lesson for conservatives and anyone else who thinks this is about a dilettante government of left-wing idealists who think they can flout the law while staging some kind of Che Guevara-esque dream:<p>Wrong.<p><i>This is what capitalism is really about.</i><p>From the beginning, Merkel and the EU …

Here's How Wrong Trump Is: Immigrants Commit Less Crime

Everyone knows Donald Trump's comments about criminal Mexican immigrants are offensive -- even Donald Trump, who's deliberately using outrage to get attention he can't earn with substance, while also exploiting the GOP's venerable Southern Strategy.<p>But there are many people who will think that …

What Donald Trump Doesn't Understand About Immigrants and Crime

Harsh crackdowns provoke suspicion and mistrust within the very communities whose cooperation police require.<p>How do you prevent crimes committed by undocumented immigrants?<p>Parodoxically, America doesn’t need even more intensified efforts to aggressively hunt down unlawful immigrants and deport …

Tensions with Russia could prompt NATO strategy rethink

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - NATO is preparing for a long standoff with Russia, reluctantly accepting that the Ukraine conflict has fundamentally transformed Europe’s security landscape and that it may have to abandon hope of a constructive relationship with Moscow.<p>A local resident sits amidst debris at …

Russia

Philae comet could be home to alien life, say scientists

Astronomers say features of comet landed on by spacecraft in November, such as black crust and icy lakes, suggest living micro-organisms beneath surface<p>The comet landed on by the spacecraft Philae could well be home to an abundance of alien microbial life, according to leading astronomers.<p>Features …

Philae

Single-celled plankton evolves tiny, human-like eye

The eye is so complex that researchers originally thought it had come from an animal that the plankton had eaten<p>A single-celled marine plankton has evolved a miniature version of an eye to help see its prey better, researchers believe.<p>The tiny creature, which can only be seen under a microscope, it …

Biology

Trump: It'll cost me 'peanuts' to run for president

The cost of running for president? “Peanuts,” says Donald Trump.<p>“I’m in it to win it. I gave up a lot. I gave up hundreds of millions in deals, you know, things that I do. In all fairness, I don’t want it to sound trivial — NBC renewed ‘The Apprentice’ because we had a great season last season, and …

Mike Huckabee Explains How To Resist Gay Marriage Decision

The Supreme Court may have made marriage equality the law of the land, but that doesn't mean people should go along with it, 2016 Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said Sunday, comparing those opponents to civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.<p>"I don't think a lot of pastors and …

A Way To Heal The Body Using Electricity

Cincinnati scientists may have found a way to use electricity to help our bodies quickly heal from injury and wounds.<p>Their experiment works on the …

Particles

A Russian submarine may have nearly capsized a fishing boat in the Irish Sea

The 80-ton trawler was fishing for prawns in international waters in the Irish Sea between Northern Ireland and Britain when an object believed to be a submarine became entangled in the ship's nets. The ensuing moments played out like a Hollywood scene as the submarine began to tow the trawler …

This forgotten incident from the Cold War shows how Putin's air incursions could go horribly, horribly wrong

In Europe, Russian planes and ships have crossed into neighboring waters or airspace dozens of times since early 2014.<p>And Russia has taken a provocative military stance all the way to the US, most recently in late April when nuclear-capable Russian bombers penetrated a US air defense zone near …

Congratulations, New York, You’re #1 in Corruption

How the Empire State created such a toxic (and criminal) political culture.<p>Other states have plenty of corruption, but it’s hard to beat New York when it comes to sheer volume. The criminal complaint Monday against Dean Skelos, the state Senate majority leader, and his son Adam came just three …

The Nordic countries are banding together against Russia's Arctic push

In early April, the five Nordic nations — Iceland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Finland — announced their plans to expand defense ties.<p>The move toward further collective defense treaties showcases just how concerned these states have become: Iceland, Denmark, and Norway are already full NATO …

How cells know to rush in and heal wounds

Scientists have discovered how cells know when they need to take action to heal a wound. The findings shed light on the mechanisms of cell migration, …

Cancer Cells

Five things Alice in Wonderland reveals about the brain

Lewis Carroll’s popular tales contain some hidden truths about the human brain that are still inspiring neuroscientists to this day. David Robson takes a leap down the rabbit hole.<p>Lewis Carroll was remarkably modest about his masterpiece. “The heroine spends an hour underground, and meets various …

Alice In Wonderland

Evidence Of Expanding Universe May Have Been Just Dirt

Support for cosmic inflation just deflated a bit<p>It was a huge win for Big Bang supporters when, in March 2014, a team of astronomers claimed they had found direct evidence to support the concept of cosmic inflation—the super-rapid expansion of the Universe that occurred just fractions of a second …

Human Ancestors May Have Used Tools Half-Million Years Earlier Than Thought

Fossil hand bones show evidence of tool use more than three million years ago.<p>Who swung the first hammer stone? Early human ancestors may have hefted tools more than three million years ago, ancient hand bones suggest. That’s roughly half a million years earlier than the oldest stone tools yet …