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The Perfect World >> Current Events >> Front Page Portal

Front Page Portal

lime -- Friday, June 03, 2005 -- 12:16:19 AM

Posts here show up on the front page. This is still in development, so you can still make mistakes. Don't panic--with one exception, Cal and Lime will be forgiving.

The Exception: DO NOT POST COMMENTARY OR RESPONSES IN THIS THREAD! If you forget--and everyone does sometimes--just delete your post. If we have to delete it, Cal will probably be cranky about it. Don't be obtuse.

Eventually, portal posts will be anchored to a thread for responses. For now, if you want to discuss or respond to a portal, just take your responses to the relevant post. Apologies for the occasional duplication of effort, but over time this will be much better than the news/breaking news/discussion craziness that existed before.

Posting Recommendations:

  1. Make sure the title is meaningful--ideally, the title of the article. The link text can either be a subheading, or something like NY Times Article, AP Story, or whatever.
  2. Include text--it can either be commented or italicized. Eventually, Lime will standardize this so don't worry.
  3. If you don't know how to stop an image from bleeding, don't use images. Ask in the HTML Help thread or check the help files for more assistance--but you do need to have enough text to cover the image.
  4. At this point in time, you can't edit the Title, so be careful. That will change.
  5. PLEASE AVOID PERSONAL OPINIONS. Try and keep it objective text for now.
  6. NO BLOG PIMPING. This will change; Lime and I are thinking about how to give bloggers a way to publicize their work, so hang tight for now.
If you have questions, take it to the Portal thread in Meta Forum.

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CalGal -- Friday, August 05, 2005 -- 06:06:07 AM -- 310 of 1551
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Why the Red Delicious No Longer Is
related link: Decades of Makeovers Alter Apple to Its Core

In the 1980s heyday of the Red Delicious, it represented three-quarters of the harvest in Washington state, epicenter of the apple industry. By 2000, it made up less than half, and in 2003, the crop had shrunk to just 37 percent of the state's harvest of 103 million boxes. Red Delicious remains the single largest variety produced in the state, but others are ascending in market share as rapidly as Red Delicious is dropping, notably Fuji and Gala.
The reliance on Red Delicious helped push Washington's apple industry to the edge in the late 1990s and into this decade. Depressed prices for Red Delicious, weaker foreign markets and stiffer competition from abroad, including apple concentrate from China, contributed to major losses in the nation's apple industry, which mounted to $700 million in 2001, according to the U.S. Apple Association. The industry has recovered somewhat since then, in part because reduced harvests have buoyed prices.
Who's to blame for the decline of Red Delicious? Everyone, it seems. Consumers were drawn to the eye candy of brilliantly red apples, so supermarket chains paid more for them. Thus, breeders and nurseries patented and propagated the most rubied mutations, or "sports," that they could find, and growers bought them by the millions, knowing that these thick-skinned wonders also would store for ages.
CalGal -- Friday, August 05, 2005 -- 06:19:45 AM -- 311 of 1551
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Little-Noticed Crisis at Black Colleges
related link: Their students aren't ready for high school, much less secondary ed

IN a classroom of white walls and black students, an air-conditioned sanctuary from a sweltering July morning, Devon Moore walked toward the front table with his homework. He had clipped out a newspaper article and now gave a one-sentence synopsis of its subject, safety problems in pickup trucks. He identified a word new to him, "adjacent," and a word that used a prefix or suffix, "faulty." He was less than four weeks from starting his freshman year of college.
Devon had passed up a senior-class trip to Atlanta to enroll in the Summer Academy at Texas Southern University here, and at the outset of the eight-week session, he had wondered why. Having graduated from high school, he figured, "I already knew everything there was to learn." That illusion crashed and burned on Day 1, when the math instructor taught a lesson on slope and even gave an overnight assignment.
For some 185 incoming freshmen like him, and indeed for Texas Southern as an institution, the summer courses in reading, writing, and math form one front in a battle to reverse a disturbingly low graduation rate. Of the students who received diplomas last May, only 6 percent had earned their degree in the normal four years, and only 21 percent in six years. Those numbers, incredibly, reflected improvement from prior rates.
Scarface Claw -- Friday, August 05, 2005 -- 07:50:03 AM -- 312 of 1551
Loads of class and all of it third.

What the children saw
related link: Children's impressions of the war in Darfur

Children in the refugee camps were given crayons and paper to play with. The drawings they handed back revealed the disturbing cimes they had witnesssed at such a young age.

Many of hte images include excerpts of interviews conducted by Human Rights Watch with the children.

(Click related link for Bugmenot)

LoriK -- Friday, August 05, 2005 -- 11:11:40 PM -- 313 of 1551
"Do female puffins, like the young ladies of Jane Austen novels, have difficulty discriminating the genuine Mr. Darcy from the posturing of charlatans?" ACS Colors of Chemistry Calendar, May 2009

US Company wants to sell breast milk
related link: BBC story

Until now breast milk donation in the US and UK has largely been confined to a handful of non-profit milk banks that collect milk on a local basis to provide it to premature and sick infants whose mothers struggle to breast feed.
But Prolacta is aiming to buy donated breast milk from independent milk banks and hospitals across the US, pasteurise it and sell it back to hospitals to treat low-birth weight babies.
CalGal -- Saturday, August 06, 2005 -- 09:50:56 PM -- 314 of 1551
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Company A Comes Home
related link: The Iraq battlefield behind them, a wounded California National Guard company struggles to adapt to civilian life.

After a yearlong deployment, Petaluma-based Company A of the 579th Engineer Battalion (featured in a Jan. 30, 2005, cover story in this magazine) limped back, one of the most bloodied National Guard units in the war, with three dead and 17 wounded among its 100 soldiers. Their assignment: patrolling the dangerous perimeter of the main U.S. military base about 50 miles north of Baghdad.
As they reconnect with their families and resume their civilian careers, they're finding the effects of Iraq hard to shake. Palm Desert Sgt. Swami Jeetan has an emotional breakdown on the firing range at the prison where he works as a correctional officer; Durham farmer Spc. Sean Farley returns to find his father preparing to leave for Kuwait later this month with another Guard unit; Capt. William C. Turner goes home to his job as a mechanical engineer in Mountain View, where he constantly revisits decisions he made in Iraq, wondering "What if we had done this? What if we had done that?"
CalGal -- Sunday, August 07, 2005 -- 04:07:00 AM -- 315 of 1551
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Prices Fuel a Rebellion
related link: Guess what? No cars need premium.

Automotive experts say using regular gas in most vehicles does no damage and makes no discernible difference in performance. Cars made in the past 15 years have such highly refined computer controls that the engine will adjust to the grade of octane in the gasoline, even in cars sold as requiring premium gasoline. Some drivers -- in some cars under some driving conditions -- may notice a drop in horsepower, but for most people behind the wheel, it wouldn't be enough to notice, the experts say.

...

Apparently, drivers are figuring this out.
Scarface Claw -- Sunday, August 07, 2005 -- 06:53:30 AM -- 316 of 1551
Loads of class and all of it third.

Robin Cook dead at 59
related link: Anti-Iraq war British MP dies from a heart attack

Robin Cook, the former British Foreign Secretary, died yesterday after suffering a suspected heart attack while walking on a mountain in Scotland.

He was airlifted out, but his wife Gaynor had to make her own way down the mountain, with the help of a passer-by, and was then taken to the hospital by police.

CalGal -- Sunday, August 07, 2005 -- 04:10:46 PM -- 317 of 1551
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Rich Liberals Vow to Fund Think Tanks
related link: Aim Is to Compete With Conservatives

At least 80 wealthy liberals have pledged to contribute $1 million or more apiece to fund a network of think tanks and advocacy groups to compete with the potent conservative infrastructure built up over the past three decades.
The money will be channeled through a new partnership called the Democracy Alliance, which was founded last spring -- the latest in a series of liberal initiatives as the Democratic Party and its allies continue to struggle with the loss of the House and the Senate in 1994 and the presidency in 2000. Many influential Democratic contributors were left angry and despairing over the party's poor showing in last year's elections, and are looking for what they hope will be more effective ways to invest their support.
rugger -- Sunday, August 07, 2005 -- 11:21:25 PM -- 318 of 1551

Netanyahu quits as Gaza pullout approved
related link: Financial Times

"Benjamin Netanyahu quit his post as Israeli finance minister in a dramatic move on Sunday just moments before the cabinet gave its final approval of the first evacuation of settlements in the Gaza Strip, which are due to start next week, saying it was an “irresponsible move” that would harm Israel's security."

TAFKA -- Monday, August 08, 2005 -- 02:47:03 AM -- 319 of 1551
That moment when you have so much shit to do that you decide not to do any of it

Terrorists Turn to the Web as Base of Operations
related link: Once based in Afghanistan, Al Qaeda Now Permeates Cyberspace

In the snow-draped mountains near Jalalabad in November 2001, as the Taliban collapsed and al Qaeda lost its Afghan sanctuary, Osama bin Laden biographer Hamid Mir watched "every second al Qaeda member carrying a laptop computer along with a Kalashnikov" as they prepared to scatter into hiding and exile. On the screens were photographs of Sept. 11 hijacker Mohamed Atta.

Nearly four years later, al Qaeda has become the first guerrilla movement in history to migrate from physical space to cyberspace. With laptops and DVDs, in secret hideouts and at neighborhood Internet cafes, young code-writing jihadists have sought to replicate the training, communication, planning and preaching facilities they lost in Afghanistan with countless new locations on the Internet.

TAFKA -- Monday, August 08, 2005 -- 03:17:47 AM -- 320 of 1551
That moment when you have so much shit to do that you decide not to do any of it

Trapped Russian Mini-Sub Crew Is Found Alive
related link: Vessel Freed by British Undersea Vehicle

MOSCOW, Aug. 7 -- After three days trapped in a cold and dark hulk with a dwindling air supply, the seven-man crew of an immobilized Russian mini-sub were brought to the surface of the Pacific Ocean alive Sunday after a British undersea vehicle cut through the cables and net that had snared the vessel on the sea floor, the Russian navy said.

"The mini-sub has surfaced, and all seven crew members are alive," Capt. Igor Dygalo, spokesman for Russia's Pacific Fleet, told Interfax. "They left the mini-sub unassisted and boarded the rescue boat which will take them to the ship Alages where medical help is at the ready."

CalGal -- Monday, August 08, 2005 -- 05:40:03 AM -- 321 of 1551
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Peter Jennings Dies at 67
related link: ABC News obit

Times Obit

Peter Jennings, a high school dropout from Canada who transformed himself into one of the most urbane, well-traveled and recognizable journalists on American television, died yesterday. He was 67 and lived in Manhattan.
The cause was lung cancer, said Charles Gibson, who announced the death of his colleague on television in a special report just after 11:30 p.m. Mr. Jennings had disclosed that he was suffering from lung cancer on April 5, first in a written statement released by ABC and later that night on "World News Tonight," the evening news broadcast that he had led since September 1983.

CalGal -- Tuesday, August 09, 2005 -- 08:50:03 AM -- 322 of 1551
I remember a time, back in the late 90s, when I thought nonsense like this mattered somewhat more than I do now. Now I see well-educated people yammering about the birth control choices of their daughters, or gay marriage, and I think they are morons.

Men Do Have Trouble Hearing Women
related link: AFP

Men who are accused of never listening by women now have an excuse -- women's voices are more difficult for men to listen to than other men's, a report said.
The Daily Mail, quoting findings published in the specialist magazine
NeuroImage, said researchers at Sheffield university in northern England discovered startling differences in the way the brain responds to male and female sounds.
Men deciphered female voices using the auditory part of the brain that processes music, while male voices engaged a simpler mechanism, it said.
Ronski -- Tuesday, August 09, 2005 -- 02:42:15 PM -- 323 of 1551
"What can happen to an Old Fashioned?" -- Jim Backus

Chavez Warns U.S. Not to Invade
related link: U.S. Will Bite the Dust

Chavez called the United States the "most savage, cruel and murderous empire that has existed in the history of the world."

The Venezuelan leader said "socialism is the only path," and told the students the collective goal is to "save a world threatened by the voracity of U.S. imperialism."

GregD -- Tuesday, August 09, 2005 -- 04:35:44 PM -- 324 of 1551
After the power to choose a man wants the power to erase. --Stephen Dunn

Politics of Video Games Marked by a Generational Divide
related link: Chasing the Dream

As with the rise of rock & roll music in the 50's, the issue of video games shows a strong division between those who grew up with them and those who didn't. While older parents and politicians rail against what they feel is a generation of children being trained to murder and pillage younger parents, kids, and most recently scientific and sociological studies are disagreeing with them. The issue looks set to simply dissipate on its own as the older generation passes on.

(Deleted message originally posted by Sister Madly on Tuesday, August 09, 2005 -- 05:34:57 PM.)

Elizabeth Barrett -- Tuesday, August 09, 2005 -- 09:01:18 PM -- 326 of 1551
Ninja Underwear!

Thieves Tunneled For Months To Pull Off Brazil's Biggest Bank Robbery
related link: Three months spent tunneling under city street pays off a whopping $65 million

SAO PAULO, Brazil -- Thieves spent three months tunneling under a busy city boulevard in northeastern Brazil to break into a Central Bank vault and pull off the biggest robbery ever in South America's largest country. The crime that netted $65 million was remarkably similar to a tunnel heist last year in which more than $1 million was stolen from a Sao Paulo company that transports money for banks.

The suspected mastermind of that caper reportedly had escaped from prison three years earlier -- by digging a tunnel.

rugger -- Wednesday, August 10, 2005 -- 03:50:15 PM -- 327 of 1551

Soldier's mom digs in near Bush ranch
related link: Senator sees 'echoes of Vietnam' in vigil to meet president

"I want to ask the president, why did he kill my son?" Sheehan told reporters. "He said my son died in a noble cause, and I want to ask him what that noble cause is." Sheehan said hers was one of a group of about 15 families who each met separately with the president one day last June. "He wouldn't look at the pictures of Casey. He didn't even know Casey's name," she told CNN Sunday. "Every time we tried to talk about Casey and how much we missed him, he would change the subject."
Babylon Sister -- Wednesday, August 10, 2005 -- 10:18:02 PM -- 328 of 1551

Is the government paying farmers to make us fat?
related link: Diet Recommendations versus Subsidies

"The government says half your diet should be fruits and vegetables, but it doesn't subsidize the farmers who grow them. Instead, half of all federal agriculture subsidies go to grain farmers, whose crops feed animals for meat, milk and eggs and become cheap ingredients in processed food."

Kteemac -- Thursday, August 11, 2005 -- 04:53:32 AM -- 329 of 1551
Sir, you are recreating.

Truck Bearing 35K of Explosives Blows Up
related link: Truck Detonates on Utah's Highway 6



A tractor-trailer carrying 35,500 pounds of explosives overturned and exploded Wednesday, injuring four people and leaving a huge crater on U.S. 6 in Spanish Fork Canyon.

The truck driver, a passenger in the cab, a motorist and a man on a motorcycle were transported to hospitals immediately after the 1:54 p.m. accident, Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Todd Royce said.

The truck was “pretty much vaporized” in the explosion, Royce said.

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