Stick Figures on Mars

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover has spotted a set of mysterious ‘stick-like figures’ on the red planet.

In a photo shared to the rover’s Twitter account this week, NASA revealed a look at the unusual formations recently discovered on the face of a Martian rock.

It’s unclear what exactly created the quarter-inch-long ‘stick-figures,’ though the space agency says they could be crystals or minerals left in the gaps where crystals dissolved. read more

California is Falling Apart

from the American Spectator:

 California’s Infrastructure Is Crumbling (When It’s Not Burning)

Oroville-Dam

Wen I first moved to California from Ohio in the 1990s, I spotted a postcard in a gift shop that noted the state’s four seasons: wildfires, mudslides, earthquakes and riots. The postcard wasn’t entirely wrong. Outside of drought years, the state does suffer through a regular cycle of fires, slides and earthquakes, although the riots aren’t actually a seasonal thing. Californians are accustomed to the state’s weather disasters the same way a Kansan is accustomed to tornado drills.

Currently, Southern California is ablaze. Not long ago, out-of-control wildfires consumed a large portion of the Napa Valley, tragically destroying about 5 percent of the region’s housing stock and killing dozens of people. I once had to flee a raging wildfire – and the experience is far from pleasant. During last year’s floods, we were packed and ready to go while hoping the aging levee system held near my little ranch downstream from the state’s last wild river. read more

Global Warming is Killing the Polar Bears – Not

While reading this ridiculous account from the left chronicled by IBD, be mindful of these actual facts. The most recent Scientific Working Group Study of Polar Bear populations from 2016 shows a maximum of only 10,000 Polar Bears remained in the 1960’s. By 2005, populations increased to upwards of 25,000. They continue to increase each year. In 2015 the number jumped to maximum of 31,000 and last year, 2016, the number jumped again to over 32,250. I guess Global warming has been good to the Polar Bear.

from IBD:

No, Global Warming Isn’t Killing Off The Polar Bears

It’s a heart-rending video: A National Geographic video shows a plainly starving, shockingly thin polar bear rummaging for food. It’s near death. The tragic scene went viral on the internet.

“When scientists say bears are going extinct, I want people to realize what it looks like,” said SeaLegacy photographer Paul Nicklen, whose video of the bear was later shared online by National Geographic.

And, of course, the media wasted no time in fixing blame: global warming. read more

An Assault Rifle is just too Scary to Own

by: Brent Smith at the Common Constitutionalist

Scroll Down for Audio Version

A report out of Southern California describes a “gun enthusiast” who purposely destroyed his AR-15 rifle. It is further explained that he did so, “to do his part to put a stop to mass shootings.”

He took a sledge hammer to it.

“I can’t do it,” Chad Vachter said. “I can’t have something in my house that so easily could become a part of another situation like that, and I’m not going to be desensitized to it. I refuse to.”

“Vachter, of Riverside County, first noticed his feelings toward the weapon changing after the San Bernardino, Calif., attack that killed 14 people at the Inland Regional Center in 2015. His son was being treated for autism there,” KMIR reports.

While I understand why he feels a connection toward the Center and likely some of the slain staff there – what does he mean? Has Vachter become unstable? Is he on the verge of a mental break-down, to the point that he fears becoming the next mass-shooter? read more

Gene Editing Could Cure 15,000 Diseases

Scientists at MIT and Harvard have discovered two gene editing techniques to fix mutations that cause diseases like cystic fibrosis and Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Both diseases, and about half all human genetic disorders, are caused by mutations in single letters in the human genome, in which an ‘A’ appears where there should be a ‘B.’

The newly-developed gene editing systems can target the smallest units of our DNA or RNA to undo the mutation that causes cystic fibrosis.

One system edits DNA in the genome itself, while the other targets RNA, which transports genetic messages for making proteins.

MIT and Harvard scientists have developed a new gene editing tool that can rewrite the mutation in the genome that causes inherited diseases like cystic fibrosis

read more