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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Friday, February 24, 2012

Rick Salutin: From the cradles of western civilization tour (in The Toronto Star)

"When I was in university, Athens and Jerusalem were served to us as the separate wellsprings of western civilization. Their status was a given, like western civ itself. I’m finding though, that it may be a bit late; the old categories don’t seem as firm. ...

"What made us picture Plato and Aristotle as Oxford dons or German philosophers? You can see Turkey from parts of Greece; it receives more African and Asian immigrants, legal and illegal, than any other EU nation and they seem at home. ...

"The last piece of my little intellectual undergrad castle to teeter might be the idea of western civ itself. I don’t mean in Gandhi’s puckish sense, who said that it — western civilization — would be a good idea. It used to seem so solid. ... it’s also a result of globalization in its economic and Internet senses. It’s easier now to see how everything human tends to interpenetrate and bleed into everything else — and harder to imagine that it ever didn’t."

Full article: From the cradles of western civilization tour.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Coal, not oilsands, the real threat to climate, study finds (in the Toronto Star)

"...the paper concludes that burning all the globe’s vast coal deposits would create a 15C-degree increase in temperature. Burning all the abundant natural gas would warm the planet by more than three degrees. ...

"“This idea that we’re going to somehow run out of coal and natural gas and fossil fuels is really misplaced. We’ll run out of human ability to live on the planet long before we run out of them.

"“I have always said that the tarsands are a symptom of a very big problem. The problem is dependence on fossil fuels.”"

Full article: Canada News: Coal, not oilsands, the real threat to climate, study finds.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Alzheimer’s discovery could curb spread of disease, researchers say (in the Toronto Star)

"Two independent studies by teams of Columbia and Harvard researchers looked at the brains of mice and found that the degenerative brain disease begins in one small part of the brain and spreads through an abnormal protein known as tau, which is seen in Alzheimer’s-affected brains."

Full article: Alzheimer’s discovery could curb spread of disease, researchers say.

Antonia Zerbisias: Capital punishment: is the free market on its last legs? (in the Toronto Star)

"When even presidential candidate Newt Gingrich suggests capitalism needs a makeover, it does seem the free-market system is in trouble."

Full article: Canada News: Capital punishment: is the free market on its last legs?.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Aerorider | Ultralight vehicle | Electric hybrid tricycle

Aerorider | Ultralight vehicle | Electric hybrid tricycle.

Thanks to Antonio Bettencourt on the LinkedIn Green group for pointing this out!

Rick: Salutin: Lessons from the Shafia case (in the Toronto Star)

"The premise of a multicultural society isn’t that we are “foreign” to each other but that we’re mutually accessible based on our common humanity. There are certainly differences and disputes, but these are rife within as well as between groups. It isn’t a matter of imposing “our” values on “them” based on “our” cultural or moral superiority."

Beware the simple explanations after Shafia murder verdicts.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Catherine Porter: Frances Moore Lappé’s environmental insights intoxicate the mind (in the Toronto Star)

"Climate change is an opportunity. ... Lappé is a big-time environmentalist, who many food activists credit with launching the local food movement in the 1970s. Her book, Diet for a Small Planet, sold millions of copies.

"She clearly doesn’t mean “opportunity” in the Stephen Harper we-can-drill-the-Arctic way. She means climate change is a challenge that could inspire a shift in our world view.

...

"Lappé ... puts it this way: “The real crisis is we feel powerless.”"

Full article: Toronto News: Porter: Frances Moore Lappé’s environmental insights intoxicate the mind.

See also Biography of Frances Moore Lappé.

Food intolerances can be found with a blood test (in the Toronto Star)

Full article: Food intolerances can be found with a blood test.

Shana Kelley’s U of T team develops a chip to detect cancer earlier (in the Toronto Star)

Full article: Q&A: Shana Kelley’s U of T team develops a chip to detect cancer earlier.