If you are a human in winter today, take solace in the knowledge that being outside burns calories. In the journal Trends in Endocrinology and Metabolism, scientists from Maastricht University in The Netherlands argue that when exercise isn’t an option, “regular exposure to mild cold may provide a healthy and sustainable alternative strategy for increasing energy expenditure.”
Shivering can increase your metabolic rate as much as five fold. The problem with shivering is that it is terrible, so Dr. Wouter van Marken Lichtenbelt and colleagues looked into being only mildly cold as a way to burn calories. Our bodies burn energy to keep us warm in a process called non-shivering thermogenesis (NST), they explain, which works even at pretty reasonable temperatures. They defined mild cold exposure as 64 degrees Fahrenheit.
"In most young and middle-aged people NST increases by between a few percent and 30 percent in response to mild cold exposure," they write. They say that can significantly improve your calorie-in to calorie-burned ratio. Even if you eat more to compensate, most people won’t eat enough to undo the extra expenditure.
Read more. [Image: Marken Lichtenbelt et al., Cell Press]
The Canadian government’s decision to scrap its “Immigrant Investor Program” leaves 46,000 wealthy Chinese who had planned to emigrate to Canada, or at least move their money and families there, searching for a new home.
The decision, announced in Finance Minister Jim Flaherty’s budget on February 10, effectively tosses out 59,000 pending visa applications, 70 percent of them from China, according to the South China Morning Post. Under the terms of the program, applicants with a net worth of over C$1.6 million (U.S. $1.5 million) agreed to give the Canadian government an interest-free, C$800,000 loan for five years in exchange for a resident visa that could lead to citizenship.
The program drew a flood of mainland Chinese applicants via the Canadian consulate in Hong Kong, forcing Canada to freeze the approval process in mid-2012. Part of the problem was that the visa program was priced too low, Canada said, undervaluing Canadian permanent residence. There was also “little evidence that immigrant investors as a class are maintaining ties to Canada or making a positive economic contribution to the country,” the budget says.
Read more. [Image: Todd Karol/Reuters]
After seven years of litigation, two trips to a federal appeals court and $3.8 million worth of lawyer time, the public has finally learned why a wheelchair-bound Stanford University scholar was cuffed, detained and denied a flight from San Francisco to Hawaii: FBI human error.FBI agent Kevin Kelley was investigating Muslims in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2004 when he checked the wrong box on a terrorism form, erroneously placing Rahinah Ibrahim on the no-fly list.
After seven years of litigation, two trips to a federal appeals court and $3.8 million worth of lawyer time, the public has finally learned why a wheelchair-bound Stanford University scholar was cuffed, detained and denied a flight from San Francisco to Hawaii: FBI human error.
FBI agent Kevin Kelley was investigating Muslims in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2004 when he checked the wrong box on a terrorism form, erroneously placing Rahinah Ibrahim on the no-fly list.
What happened next was the real shame. Instead of admitting to the error, high-ranking President Barack Obama administration officials spent years covering it up. Attorney General Eric Holder, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and a litany of other government officials claimed repeatedly that disclosing the reason Ibrahim was detained, or even acknowledging that she’d been placed on a watch list, would cause serious damage to the U.S. national security. Again and again they asserted the so-called “state secrets privilege” to block the 48-year-old woman’s lawsuit, which sought only to clear her name.
Because it’s really worth upending an innocent person’s life for seven years to protect yourself from being embarrassed.
This is disgusting.
Brandon Mayfield was a US Army veteran and an attorney in Portland, OR. After the 2004 Madrid train bombing, his fingerprint was partially matched to one belonging to one of the suspected bombers, but the match was a poor one.
Brandon Mayfield was a US Army veteran and an attorney in Portland, OR. After the 2004 Madrid train bombing, his fingerprint was partially matched to one belonging to one of the suspected bombers, but the match was a poor one. But by this point, the FBI was already convinced they had their man, so they rationalized away the non-matching elements of the print, and set in motion a train of events that led to Mayfield being jailed without charge; his home and office burgled by the FBI; his client-attorney privilege violated; his life upended.
At every turn, the FBI treated evidence that contradicted their theory as evidence that confirmed it. Mayfield’s passport had expired and he couldn’t possibly have been in Madrid? Proof that he was a terrorist: he must be using his connections with Al Qaeda to get false papers so that his own passport isn’t recorded as crossing any borders. Mayfield starts to freak out once he realizes he’s under surveillance? Aha! Only the guilty worry about having their homes burgled by G-men!
The FBI was so sure of their theory that they lied to a judge during their campaign against him. His story is the perfect embodiment of “confirmation bias” — the tendency of human beings to give undue weight to evidence that confirms their existing belief and to discount evidence that rebuts it. Confirmation bias is one of the underappreciated problems of mass surveillance: gather enough facts about anyone’s life and you can find facts that confirm whatever theory you have about them.
This is horrifying.
As the 2014 Olympics officially open in Sochi, take a look back at photos from the 1980 Summer Games, in Moscow: http://nyr.kr/1b9F7vo
Click-through for more of our coverage of the Sochi Games: http://nyr.kr/1iv4HdH
Above: Soviet dancers and gymnasts rehearse for the opening ceremony of the twenty-second Olympic Summer Games, at Moscow’s Lenin Stadium. The Games officially opened on July 19, 1980. Photograph by AP.
Vietnamese artist C3nmt created this awesome smiling portrait of the amazing Hayao Miyazaki using elements from his various Studio Ghibli works. From the Princess Mononoke characters that make up his hair, to the My Neighbor Totoro characters in his cheeks, down to the Susuwatari (wandering soot) from Spirited Away that make up his tie, the longer you look at it, the more parts you’ll recognize. It’s a wonderful reminder of the many amazing worlds that Miyazaki has created over the years.
ladyyueh asked: Can this be a PSA? If you get your comics from a shop but don't have a pull-list for your favs then there will be a time when you will cry. I went to my shop last Wed. and all they had were 2 issues of PD #1. (Completely out of all PD this week.) I was so happy when I got #4 from my box. AND IF YOU THINK YOU WILL ALWAYS BE THERE BRIGHT AND EARLY ON WEDNESDAY THEN THE UNIVERSE WILL PROVE YOU WRONG. tl;dr: Kelly-Sue, your comic sold out at my shop. I was sad for readers, but happy for you.
You’re so very sweet! But don’t be happy for me—
If a book sells out on a Wednesday, that’s actually really *bad* news—believe it or not.
If it a book sells out on a Wednesday, that means it was under-ordered… Which means *we* blew it: either getting the preorder message out or communicating with the retailer about the book so they’d have the information they needed to correctly gauge potential sales. *They* lost sales, and so did we. Soonest they can expect to get more books in is… What? The next week, at the absolute best, right? And that is unlikely. Momentum gets lost quickly. A lot of those potential readers just don’t end up on board, because… Because we made them work for it, honestly.
Can you imagine if it was that hard to buy a pair of shoes? I’d… Have a lot more room in my closet.
[Reading comprehension aid: I’m not castigating retailers—retailers are doing the best they can with the system we’ve got.]
ANYWAY anyway… That was a much longer response than you wanted or needed.
I forgot the question. Were you able to get the book?