Posts Tagged ‘research’

(Bare) Majority of Americans Believe in Evolution

September 1, 2021

(Bare) Majority of Americans Believe in Evolution

According to a University of Michigan study, the percentage of American adults who believe in evolution is now 54%. In all, 32% of religious fundamentalists, 34% of conservative Republicans, and 83% of liberal Democrats accept evolution as fact. Science marches on!

More:

“Study: Evolution now accepted by majority of Americans,” Morgan Sherburne, Michigan News

 

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Image: Anti-Evolution League at the Scopes Trial, Dayton Tennessee, from Literary Digest, July 25, 1925

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Fire Country Homeowners Think They’re Prepared. Nope.

June 29, 2021

Fire Country Homeowners Think They're Prepared. Nope.

University of Colorado researchers surveyed residents of a mountain country housing subdivision about wildfire risk to their homes. Professionals rated 61 percent of households as high fire risks, while 22 percent of residents did. 70 percent of residents said their houses were at low or moderate wildfire risk, while experts said only 19 percent of housewere. 50 percent said they had 100 feet of defensible space around their homes, but only 17 percent did.

Hope springs eternal, but wildfire does, too.

More:

“Mountain residents underestimate wildfire risk, overestimate preparedness,” Kelsey Simpkins, CU Boulder Today

Related:

“Burn. Build. Repeat: Why Our Wildfire Policy Is So Deadly.” Jeffrey Ball, Mother Jones

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Top image (“Smokey Says ‘Let It Burn’”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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MAGA Motivation: White Fear of Losing Out Fomented Insurgency

April 7, 2021
MAGA Motivation: White Fear of Losing Out Fomented Insurgency

DC Bus shelter, 8 blocks from the Capitol, January 16, 2021

“When the political scientist Robert Pape began studying the issues that motivated the 380 or so people arrested in connection with the attack against the Capitol on Jan. 6, he expected to find that the rioters were driven to violence by the lingering effects of the 2008 Great Recession.

But instead he found something very different: Most of the people who took part in the assault came from places, his polling and demographic data showed, that were awash in fears that the rights of minorities and immigrants were crowding out the rights of white people in American politics and culture.”

— “Fears of White People Losing Out Permeate Capitol Rioters’ Towns, Study Finds,” Alan Feuer, New York Times

More:

“What an analysis of 377 Americans arrested or charged in the Capitol insurrection tells us,” Robert A. Pape, Washington Post

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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The Moon Is Awash In Water

October 29, 2020

The Moon Is Awash In Water

Two new studies indocate that there are “cold traps” on the moon full of water. NASA spied on Luna from a high-flying jet named SOFIA (Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy) and found the unique signature of water all over the place on sunlit portions of the moon. A secord study finds that frozen water could be hiding in lunar shadows on 15,444 square miles of the moon’s real estate. Astronauts are probably planning lakeside chateaus as you read this.

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CDC Funds First Gun Violence Research in 24 Years

October 7, 2020

CDC Funds First Gun Violence Study in Decades

In 2019, there were over 39,000 gun deaths in the US, including 24,000 suicides and 400 mass shootings. That’s a health crisis, but a craven Congress blocked medical research into gun violence. Until now:

“Last week, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced the recipients of nearly $8 million in funding to 16 research groups across the US to study firearm injury prevention. Their objectives over the next few years are to find ways to enhance safety and lower gun deaths and crime, either by evaluating current strategies in practice or proposing new ones. Research grants on the same topic awarded by the US National Institutes of Health are still under consideration.”

— “Researchers begin the first wave of US-funded gun injury prevention work in decades,” Katherine Ellen Foley, Quartz

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Image (“Blood Sacrifice”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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What Men Think About

December 3, 2019

What Men Think About

“By means of a golf tally counter, 283 college students kept track of their thoughts pertaining to food, sleep, or sex for one week. Males reported significantly more need-based cognitions overall, but there was no significant interaction between sex of participant and type of cognition recorded. Therefore, although these young men did think more about sex than did young women, they also thought more about food and sleep.”

— “Sex on the brain?: an examination of frequency of sexual cognitions as a function of gender, erotophilia, and social desirability,” Fisher, Moore, Pittenger,  Journal of Sex Research 2012, via NCBI

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Wildfire Strategy: Let It Burn

July 14, 2017

Wildfire Strategy

Every year since the dawn of time, the Santa Ana winds lash Southern California’s dry autumn brushlands into explosive, blazing infernos. Every year since the dawn of the last century, Southern Californians express surprise as they are engulfed in a sea of flame. With climate change, things won’t get better.

“We will never be able to control wildfire,” explains Tania Schoennagel of the Institute for Alpine and Arctic Research, “We have to learn to live with it and adapt, just like we do with droughts and flooding. Our current wildfire policies can’t protect people and homes.”

More:

“The Future of Fighting Wildfires in the Era of Climate Change,” Bob Berwyn, Pacific Standard

“Adapt to more wildfire in western North American forests as climate changes,” Tania Schoennagela, Jennifer K. Balcha, Hannah Brenkert-Smith et al., PNAS

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com.

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Male & Female Brains Are Different

June 28, 2017
Male & Female Brains Are Different

              Above: The male brain.

Research at the University of Edinburgh indicates that that the brains of men and women are shaped differently. While men’s brains are bigger overall, brains of women tend to have thicker cortices, which are associated with intelligence. We’re going to ask some women to look into that for us and tell us what it all means.

More:

“Women have bigger brain regions associated with intelligence,” Katherine Ellen Foley, Quartz

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Less-Gassy Grass Cuts Cow Burps, Eases Global Warming

October 17, 2016

Less-Gassy Grass Cuts Cow Burps, Eases Global Warming
Scientists at Denmark’s Aarhus University and the DLF seed corporation are using DNA technology to develop a type of grass that is easier for cows to digest, meaning less gas builds up in bossy’s belly. Bovine burps are a major source of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas that promotes climate change.

The project, funded by Denmark’s Ministry of Environment and Food, uses genomic selection to determine promising grass strains for breeding. The project is expected to take about 5 or 6 years, so you’ll have to excuse bovine belching until then. Environmentally-anxious cowboys and cowgirls can follow the project here.

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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UN Health Agency: Hot Dogs, Sausages and Bacon Are Carcinogenic

October 26, 2015

UN Health Agency: Hot Dogs, Sausages and Bacon Are Carcinogenic

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), an agency of the UN’s World Health Organization (WHO), has determined that consumption of processed meat is as bad for you as smoking. Eating 50 grams (1.76 ounces) of sausages, bacon, and ham daily makes it 18% more likely that you’ll get colorectal cancer. 50 grams is about 2 strips of bacon.

Processed meats include  bacon, sausages, hot dogs, salami, corned beef, beef jerky, ham, canned meat, meat-based sauces, and other meat products that have extended shelf life due to smoking, curing, fermentation, or adding salt or other preservatives.

Further concerns for carnivores: IARC finds that even fresh red meat — beef, veal, pork*, lamb, mutton, horse, and goat — is “probably” carcinogenic, too. The risk of eating 50 grams of red meat daily is “mainly for colorectal cancer, but associations were also seen for pancreatic cancer and prostate cancer.” American men eat twice that much, according to the North American Meat Institute.

*Note: Despite the National Pork Board’s ad campaign, nutritionally pork is not a “white meat.”

More:

“World Health Organization: Red and processed meats have a strong link to cancer,” Akshat Rathi, Deena Shanker, Quartz

“Bacon Declared a Carcinogen, World Mourns,” Natalie Shoemaker, Big Think

“Bad Day For Bacon: Processed Meats Cause Cancer, WHO Says,” Allison Aubrey, NPR

“Hot dogs, bacon and other processed meats cause cancer, World Health Organization declares,” Peter Whoriskey, Washington Post

“The WHO’s new warnings about bacon and cancer, explained,” Julia Belluz, Vox

“Processed meats do cause cancer – WHO,” BBC News

“IARC Monographs evaluate consumption of red meat and processed meat,” IARC press release

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Top photo (vending cart sign, Washington DC) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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