We Are Making Ebola Outbreaks Worse By Cutting Down Forests

Originally posted on HumansinShadow.wordpress.com:

Mother Jones

We Are Making Ebola Outbreaks Worse By Cutting Down Forests

Epidemiologists explain how human activity helps spread the deadly virus in West Africa.

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How Blue Eyes Originated!

Close-up of a blue-eyed koala

Close-up of a blue-eyed koala (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How Blue eyes Originated



PicMonkey Collage

Everyone with blue eyes alive today – from Angelina Jolie to Wayne Rooney – can trace their ancestry back to one person who probably lived about 10,000 years ago in the Black Sea region, a study has found. Scientists studying the genetics of eye colour have discovered that more than 99.5 per cent of blue-eyed people who volunteered to have their DNA analysed have the same tiny mutation in the gene that determines the colour of the iris.


This indicates that the mutation originated in just one person who became the ancestor of all subsequent people in the world with blue eyes, according to a study by Professor Hans Eiberg and colleagues at the University of Copenhagen.

The scientists are not sure when the mutation occurred but other evidence suggested it probably arose about 10,000 years ago when there was a rapid expansion of the human population in Europe as a result of the spread of agriculture from the Middle East.

“The mutations responsible for blue eye colour most likely originate from the north-west part of the Black Sea region, where the great agricultural migration of the northern part of Europe took place in the Neolithic periods about 6,000 to 10,000 years ago,” the researchers report in the journal Human Genetics.

Professor Eiberg said that brown is the “default” colour for human eyes which results from a build-up of the dark skin pigment, melanin. However, in northern Europe a mutation arose in a gene known as OCA2 that disrupted melanin production in the iris and caused the eye colour to become blue.

“Originally, we all had brown eyes,” said Professor Eiberg. “But a genetic mutation affecting the OCA2 gene in our chromosomes resulted in the creation of a ‘switch’ which literally turned off the ability to produce brown eyes.”

Variations in the colour of people’s eyes can be explained by the amount of melanin in the iris, but blue-eyed individuals only have a small degree of variation in the amount of melanin in their eyes, he said.

“From this we can conclude that all blue-eyed individuals are linked to the same ancestor. They have all inherited the same switch at exactly the same spot in their DNA,” said Professor Eiberg.

Men and women with blue eyes have almost exactly the same genetic sequence in the part of the DNA responsible for eye colour. However, brown-eyed people, by contrast, have a considerable amount of individual variation in that area of DNA.

Professor Eiberg said he has analysed the DNA of about 800 people with blue eyes, ranging from fair-skinned, blond-haired Scandinavians to dark-skinned, blue-eyed people living in Turkey and Jordan.

“All of them, apart from possibly one exception, had exactly the same DNA sequence in the region of the OCA2 gene. This to me indicates very strongly that there must have been a single, common ancestor of all these people,” he said.

It is not known why blue eyes spread among the population of northern Europe and southern Russia. Explanations include the suggestions that the blue eye colour either offered some advantage in the long hours of daylight in the summer, or short hours of daylight in winter, or that the trait was deemed attractive and therefore advantageous in terms of sexual selection.

Source The Independent

Mortality Increase From Alzheimer´s Disease in U.S. within last 10 Years

Talesfromthelou’s Blog – copied:

Mortality Increase From Alzheimer’s Disease in the United States within the last 10 Years. Data for 2000 and 2010

Fascinating data from the Center for Disease Control.  A generation ago we could not even spell Alzheimer’s. It now looks like we are facing an avalanche of seniors losing their minds, and their lives, in later years.  You better believe that I will be looking for all preventative methods and cures for this dreaded degeneration of the brain.  I have seen what it does and it has no dignity. Lou

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States

NCHS Data Briefs Update.

In 2010, Alzheimer’s disease was the underlying cause for a total of 83,494 deaths and was classified as a contributing cause for an additional 26,488 deaths. Mortality from Alzheimer’s disease has steadily increased during the last 30 years. Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States and the fifth leading cause for people aged 65 years and over. An estimated 5.4 million persons in the United States have Alzheimer’s disease. The cost of health care for people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia was estimated to be 200 billion dollars in 2012, including 140 billion dollars in costs to Medicare and Medicaid and is expected to reach 1.1 trillion dollars in 2050.

Alzheimer’s disease mortality varies by age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, and geographic area. This report presents mortality data on Alzheimer’s disease based on data from the National Vital Statistics System from 2000 through 2010, the most recent year for which detailed data are available.

Key findings

Data from the National Vital Statistics System

  • The age-adjusted death rate from Alzheimer’s disease increased by 39 percent from 2000 through 2010 in the United States.
  • Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States and is the fifth leading cause among people aged 65 years and over. People aged 85 years and over have a 5.4 times greater risk of dying from Alzheimer’s disease than people aged 75–84 years.
  • The risk of dying from Alzheimer’s disease is 26 percent higher among the non-Hispanic white population than among the non-Hispanic black population, whereas the Hispanic population has a 30 percent lower risk than the non-Hispanic white population.
  • In 2010, among all states and the District of Columbia, 31 states showed death rates from Alzheimer’s disease that were above the national rate (25.1).

Keywords: dementia, National Vital Statistics System, death rate, aging

Alzheimer’s disease mortality increased compared with selected major causes of death.

Figure 1 is a bar chart showing percent change in age-adjusted death rates for the selected causes of death between 2000 and 2010.

Full article:


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6 Things You Should Really Know About Your Turkey


The following article first appeared in Mother Jones Magazine. Click here to subscribe.

The short, filling life of a factory-farmed turkey.

Photo Credit:
Ohio Department of Natural Resources, National Turkey Federation/Mother Jones
Click to enlarge.


Most turkey feathers and skin end up…

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National Turkey Federation/Mother Jones
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Average weight of turkyes 1965-2012

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USDA/Mother Jones
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Turkeys: typical lifetime consumption.

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National Turkey Federation/Mother Jones
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This Thanksgiving, American will eat an estimated 46 million turkeys.

Photo Credit:
National Turkey Federation/Mother Jones
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Americans throw away more than 1/3 of all edible turkey meat every year.

Photo Credit:
Rodale/Mother Jones
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Turkeys: Shutterstock

Big Bird: US National Archives/Flickr

Feather designed by Luke Anthony Firth from The Noun Project

Compost Bin designed by Bianca DiPietro from The Noun Project

Trash Can designed by Randall Barriga from The Noun Project

Belt designed by James Christopher from The Noun Project

Cowboy Boot designed by Christopher Terrill from The Noun Project

Turkey designed by Quan Do from The Noun Project

Jaeah Lee is the associate interactive producer at Mother Jones.

Originally posted on National Post | News:

The year-long court battle to keep Darwin the Ikea Monkey took a toll on a little Ontario primate sanctuary. There were “unkind” phone calls, threats to burn down their barn. And now a year after it won custody of the famous monkey, the sanctuary’s core group of volunteers is still reeling.

Browley Page / Handout

Browley Page / Handout

“We had to make a change of some sort,” said Kim Meehan, a volunteer at Story Book Farm who’s leading a fundraising campaign to buy Darwin and his monkey companions a new home with more space. The campaign launched Wednesday, hoping to secure $490,000 to put towards a nearly $1-million property north of Toronto.

Darwin, a Japanese macaque, has been a resident at Story Book in Sunderland, Ont., since he was found wandering a Toronto Ikea parking lot in December 2012 and taken from his human “mom.” Footage of the episode at Ikea, with Darwin…

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“They’re going to have to take him from my cold, dead hands before they get a hold of him”

When pressed further about whether or not the government was going to be killing the animals, Lemoine finally admitted “If that’s what the ordinance says, then that’s what it says.”

Some local residents are refusing to go along with the new ordinance, and have promised not to back down easily.


“They’re going to have to take him from my cold, dead hands before they get a hold of him,” Pit Bull owner O’hara Owens said.

Read more at http://thefreethoughtproject.com/louisiana-town-ban-dispose-of-pit-bulls-rottweilers-dec-1-2/#yYChTZ7UtmMpdYW9.99

Louisiana Town to Kill All Pit Bulls and Rottweilers: Those Who Don’t Surrender Face Police Action

Originally posted on WebInvestigatorKK:


By John Vibes

“They’re going to have to take him from my cold, dead hands before they get a hold of him

Moreauville, Louisiana – A town in Louisiana has recently voted to ban all Pit Bulls and Rottweilers, calling them “vicious breeds” of dogs. Current owners of these specific breeds have just one more month to either move out of town, or hand their family pet over to the government to be killed.

While there has traditionally been heavy debate over larger breeds of dogs, in recent years the debate has began to die down, because an overwhelming majority of people now agree that like humans, a dog’s temperament and personality are largely based on their upbringing and life experiences.

Sadly, town officials in Moreauville, Louisiana are stuck in a very immature state of mind where they are basically prejudice against breeds of dogs.

Dog owners were notified…

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‘Wounded Knee: A Line in the Sand’: Documentary to Show Never Seen Footage

Originally posted on Moorbey'z Blog:

Kevin McKiernan Bear Runner Bad Cob Wounded Knee
Reporter Kevin McKiernan is pictured with Tom Bad Cob and Oscar Bear Runner during the 1973 occupation.

Four decades ago, Kevin McKiernan made a decision that would change the course of his life.

Then in his late 20s, McKiernan was a cub reporter who had never seen combat, witnessed fatal gunfire or stepped onto an Indian reservation. That didn’t stop him from sneaking past FBI agents and U.S. Marshals in the winter of 1973 to embed with the American Indian Movement at Wounded Knee.

McKiernan was the only journalist bunking inside the compound after the federal government declared a media blackout.

“I didn’t know then that I’d disappear from my family for two months, that I’d be shot at by federal agents, assaulted by vigilantes, or that I’d come out of this place in handcuffs,” he said. “Maybe somebody had to get the inside story, but my…

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On vitamin D, the so-called experts have it wrong, U.K. researcher says

Originally posted on National Post | News:

There is little chance of leading a truly simple life today because so much of it is done with the advice of experts. With food, we are bombarded with nutritional tips; and there is no shortage of instruction on how to bring up our children.

We tend to believe the advice of people with a good track record and evident qualifications. But sometimes they get it wrong, sometimes they disagree, and that is where the simple life ends.

[np_storybar title=”The A to Z of vitamin D, from why, to what form and how much you need as our sunshine source disappears” link=”http://life.nationalpost.com/2013/11/07/jennifer-sygo-the-a-to-z-of-vitamin-d-from-why-to-what-form-and-how-much-you-need-as-our-sunshine-source-disappears/”]
You’ve likely heard that winter is a good time to take a vitamin D supplement. But that’s where the simple questions end and things get kind of hairy.

Exactly how much should you take? Does it matter if it’s a chew, drop or tablet? What about vitamin D2…

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Native Americans Arrested Following Keystone XL Pipeline Vote

Originally posted on HumansinShadow.wordpress.com:

Native Americans Arrested Following Keystone XL Pipeline Vote


Native Americans were removed from the Senate gallery for singing a traditional tribal tune after Congress rejected the Keystone XL pipeline. The group was arrested for “disrupting Congress.”

Anyone following the Keystone XL pipeline vote in the Senate yesterday heard what appeared to be chanting or singing in the background when the final tally of 41-59 was announced, signaling that approval of the pipeline had failed to clear the bar of 60 votes and that congressional approval of the pipeline was delayed for the time being.

That sound was coming from Native Americans in the gallery, singing a traditional tribal tune. Five of them were removed from the gallery and arrested.

According to Red Power Media, one of the protesters was Greg Grey Cloud of the Rosebud…

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Stray dog who raced 430 miles to a better home: Arthur latched on to an extreme sports team during Amazon race

The fifth member: Team Peak Performance walk with stray dog Arthur during a stage of the 430-mile Adventure Racing World Championship. He followed the group of four during the grueling race
All terrains: Despite numerous attempts by the team to get rid of the dog, primarily for his own safety, he refused to go. It meant when he got stuck in the knee-deep mud they helped get him out and when he was exhausted, they stopped to take a break 
The fifth member: Team Peak Performance walk with stray dog Arthur during a stage of the 430-mile Adventure Racing World Championship. He followed the group of four during the grueling race

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2846228/Meet-Arthur-stray-dog-followed-extreme-sports-team-grueling-430-mile-race-Amazon-rainforest-refused-leave-finish.html#ixzz3K0UwUgI9
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Rochester, NY Police officer Chris Burgstrom has Shot and Killed Two Innocent Family Pets in 6 Months

Originally posted on WebInvestigatorKK:


The photos below, although graphic, and disturbing, are important, in that they show what Rochester, NY Police officer Chris Burgstrom (pictured on right) is doing to our innocent family pets.
By Davy V.
Rochester, NY U.S. Postal Service mail carriers can go their entire careers delivering mail to tens of thousands of homes, encountering thousands of dogs, and yet never have to use their work-issued pepper spray on one of them.
Rochester, NY Police officer Chris Burgstrom can’t go 6 months without using his department-issued firearms, to kill two family pets, shooting both in their heads.
On Monday January 7, 2013, Steven Jodoin Benus went ice fishing, on Lake Ontario, with his 1 1/2 year old pit-bull terrier, Codi.
Shortly afterwards, Codi wandered off from Steven’s friend’s house.
Steven spent the next couple of days, covering at least 100 miles looking for his best friend Codi.
On Tuesday January…

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Buffalo under flood warning as snow-weakened tree branches and 100-km winds threaten blackouts

Originally posted on National Post | News:

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Buffalo-area residents — hit by massive snow storms last week — are preparing for evacuations Monday, as temperatures climb toward 16C.

The National Weather Service has issued a flood warning for Monday and cautioned that trees weakened by heavy snowfall and saturated soil could come crashing down. High wind gusts of up to 100 kph also could topple electrical wires and trigger power outages. Forecasts call for rain showers on Monday and a chance of rain and snow showers by early Tuesday.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo Sunday warned residents in flood-prone areas around Buffalo to move valuables up from the basement, pack a bag and prepare for the possibility of evacuation.

Cuomo said evacuation plans and emergency shelters were being readied in case of flooding. As a backup to Red Cross shelters, Cuomo said the state would have shelters at community colleges and state university campuses.

[kaltura-widget uiconfid=”23273481″…

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Originally posted on HumansinShadow.wordpress.com:

This Graveyard In Romania Will Make You Feel Solemn, But Also Pretty Happy

LIFE   //  GOOD DEEDS  thank you!
NOVEMBER 23, 2014 watch them all here: http://l.viralnova.com/colorful-tombstones/
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Graveyards aren’t usually happy places. They not only remind us of people we lost, but also of our own mortality. Most people don’t perk up when they think about visiting a cemetery. When you picture cemeteries, images of gray tombstones with fading etchings tend to come to mind.

This cemetery in Romania does things differently. Travel blog Merlin and Rebecca posted about a graveyard they visited that, instead of dreary and dismal, was quite bright and vibrant.

Merlin and Rebecca traveled to Săpânţa, Romania and discovered this unique cemetery called “the Merry Cemetery.” They also learned of the man who started it all.

Local artist Stan Ioan Pătraş made ornate and beautifully decorated…

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