GOP-Dominated House Just Voted On Bill To Approve Keystone Pipeline So Obama Can Veto It

The House voted Friday to approve construction of Keystone XL, an oil pipeline that supporters say will create thousands of jobs in the U.S. According to The Hill, the final vote tally was 266-153, which means that 28 Democrats voted in favor of the pipeline. The bill now goes to the Senate, where its fully expected to pass, and be sent to the White House.

The House does not yet have enough of a majority on the legislation to override a veto. If Obama makes good on his threat (which he will), it would derail approval. Congressional Republicans, along with a few Democrats, it seems, would rather continue to grease the palms of the oil industry than stand for whats rightand refuse Keystone XLs approval.

The Senate might be able to override a veto, though. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) said, according to the Washington Times, that he believes the Senate will have the necessary two-thirds majority needed to override a presidential veto. Manchin is one of Keystone XLs more staunch supporters in the Senate.

The U.S. wont reap any benefits at all from Keystone XL, which is one of the reasons Obama will veto the legislation when it hits his desk. The oil brought from Canadas tar sands down to the Gulf via the pipeline is not for us, so it wont increase our supply, and wont help keep our oil and gas prices down. In fact, the group Consumer Watchdog says that the pipeline actually has the potential to raise our gas prices. Their research shows that the end game is cheap oil for Asia, which can increase their demand, which raises oil prices overall, which raises our gasoline prices. The Midwest would be the hardest hit.

Also, this doesnt have the potential to create the jobs that supporters say it does. According to Politifact, while construction of Keystone XL could result in thousands of temporary jobs (running a year or less), the actual number of permanent jobs is closer to 50. So much for a much-needed injection into our permanent, well-paying jobs market.

Environmentally, tar sands oil is among the dirtiest, most carbon intensive fossil fuels on the planet. The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has been screaming for measures to address climate change now, which means phasing out tar sands extraction, among other things.

Since Canada has said that theyll look for other ways to transport oil from the tar sands if we dont build Keystone XL (hence the State Department report saying that blocking the pipeline wont stop tar sands extraction), then refusing to build it on those grounds alone is kind of silly. However, when it comes to spill risk, one analysis has found that Trans Canada expects nearly 2 spills per year, with a large spill (more than 1,000 barrels) occurring, on average, once every eight years. Thats hardly rare, and it is dangerous.

Over the course of a decade, aggregate spill volume, if there are no horrific accidents, would be about 8,000 barrels of oil. This may not sound like much, but the Heartland has some of our most fertile land. Contaminating it with even small, but repetitive, oil spills from Keystone XL, is one of the worst ideas in the long, sad history of bad ideas.

When we get right down to brass tacks, Keystone XL represents no advantage to the U.S. None. Zero, zip, zilch, nada. The Senate might be able to override a veto, but the House may not, and both chambers need to be able to do that in order to force it through anyway. Good luck with this, GOP (and the select Democrats who also think Keystone is a good idea).

Featured image by Jmcdaid Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

‘s rights and workers’ rights, and she’s an avid animal rights and welfare activist as well. Rika has a serious problem with tea party politics, as she believes that the best solutions to the world’s problems come from groups of people who don’t all think the same way. The tea party is so conservative that not only are they racist, misogynist, classist, selfish, and such fear-mongerers that they vote against their own interests, but they do not believe in working with the “enemy” either. Rika’s hatred of tea party politics and the idea that cooperating means colluding with some “enemy” is what really prompted her to start writing on liberal politics.

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Rika Christensen

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  • Steven Duran

    Its a waste of time. .itll line the pockets for some. ..hmmm?

  • disillusioned

    Hmm.. no one commenting on this one. They dont want to show how much of a split there is between the progressive mafia and liberals.

  • Roger Bettelyoun

    Why do they not just use the ole we will leave it up to the individual states line they use in so many other issues that is their job? However, if they do that to this issue, it would pass smoothly as it goes right through so many RED states and a number of these red states contain Native American reservations. Having been given the short end of the stick…HELL I will tell the truth…Native Americans have been F****d since the beginning of the European Invasion through the American Holocaust and nothing has changed since then.
    Whatever happens, this just cannot be allowed to be constructed. I just wish the politicians backing this project would be straight up honest about WHY they insist on this being built when they ALL know what a dangerous and risky project it will end up being. While we all KNOW money that is going to exchange hands, it would be interesting…MANDATORY actually to be advised of who is taking part of this windfall for Congress and Senate. As if they are not making enough money already, this is now in their sights. I am sure many are already spending the $$$ they expect to receive.
    At present. there is nothing more destructive than Keystone. It will ruin the water, land, wildlife and human life. Humans will contract so many diseases, namely cancer from exposure to the gunk that NO living creatures should have contact with.

What’s Stacked Up In A Pile In The Grand Canyon Is Seriously Crazy. How Is This Possible?

Think of everyone that is currently alive on Earth. That is 7.2 billion people. We have caused wars, climate change and countless other large-scale events. Now, what do you think 7.2 billion people would look like all in one place. (You would think a race capable of doing such important things would look pretty impressive.) The Vsauce video channel decided to do an experiment and estimate what the world”s population would look like all in one place like the Grand Canyon. The result was not what we expected.

The 7.2 BILLION people on Earth would only form this small pile in the Grand Canyon.

The 7.2 BILLION people on Earth would only form this small pile in the Grand Canyon.

Billions of people don”t even come close to filling the Grand Canyon. In fact, the world”s population only creates a small pile. If you took all of humanity throughout history (an estimated 106 billion) and put them in the Grand Canyon, it would only make 15 piles across the landmark and wouldn”t even fill it completely. The graphic is based on data visualization blogger Eesmyal Santos-Brault s work. If this fun fact interested you, then watch How Many Things Are There on the Vsauce YouTube channel. Your brain will hurt after this. Source: Vsauce Share this amazing fact with others. It”ll make them reconsider… everything.


You’ll Never Believe What These Girls Are About To Do In This Waterfall, OMG

If you are a thrill seeker and risk taker, it can sometimes be hard to find the perfect destination to get your adrenaline fill. Some people like jumping out of an airplane, but doing so one too many times could be seen as a bit of a chore. Some people go base jumping, but a close call or two may scare them away from strapping on wingsuits again. Then there are people who feel the need to push it even further. Devil”s Pool is the perfect place for adrenaline junkies who really want to take their thrill-seeking behavior to the extreme.

(source samiam2310)

There”s nothing quite like staring death right in the face, eh? If you wish to take a trip to play in the Devil”s Pool, make sure to update your will and tell your family that you love them. It”s that dangerous.


17 Science Facts That Will Leave You Questioning Everything

If you break out some of these amazing facts, youll most definitely become the life of the party!

There was an asteroid that destroyed a forest in Serbia without ever hitting the ground.


The event is known as the Tunguska Impact and occurred in 1908. The asteroid was travelling around 33,500 miles per hour as it entered the Earths atmosphere and exploded at the height of roughly 28,000 feet. It resulted in a fireball with about 185 Hiroshima bombs worth of energy and destroyed around 800 square miles of Serbian forest. While it never actually touched the ground, it is still classified as an impact.

10 Times Meteors Have Impacted History

10 Times Meteors Have Impacted History

A meteor is an object that falls from outer space into the Earth’s atmosphere. It becomes a meteorite if it survives burning up in the atmosphere and reaches land. While human knowledge of our universe has expanded more in the last century than the millennia before, meteors have both affected and been recorded throughout history. Their sight has always brought awe and occasionally brought danger to their observers.

10Mass Extinction


Photo credit: Wikimedia

Off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, deep beneath the depths of the Gulf of Mexico, lie the remains of one of the most important and well-known events involving a meteorite in the history of the entire planet. Known as the Chicxulub Crater, a 125-meter hole is all that remains of the meteor responsible for the largest mass extinction event in history.

Roughly 66 million years ago, a meteorite roughly the size of Staten Island crashed into Earth. The impact was strong enough to start wildfires hundreds of miles away from the site of the crash. So much sulfur, ash, and other debris was flung into the air that it blotted out the Sun. For months, the Earth sat in perpetual darkness and a long, unexpected winter that would change the course of the planet forever. 75 percent of life on the planet (including the dominant species, dinosaurs) died off at this time. Mammals survived this apocalyptic event by being small and warm-blooded. A lack of predators following the meteor strike led to the rise of evolution of all mammals alive today, including humans and Internet list writers.



Photo credit: Wikimedia

Every year, Muslims from all over the world make pilgrimages to the city of Mecca in modern-day Saudi Arabia. In this ancient city resides the Kaaba, the most holy site of the Islamic world. While no one knows quite how old this temple is (many Muslims believe it to have been built by Abraham), a stone that resides in one corner of the structure may hold the key to its ancient significance.

Encased in silver in the eastern corner of the Kaaba is what is only known as the Black Stone. Muslim tradition states that this stone fell from heaven to show Adam and Eve where to build their altar. Due to its significance, tests upon the stone are not possible, but this has not stopped scientists from proposing other sources for its origins. Geological evidence and nearby craters in the region lead many to believe the Black Stone may be an ancient meteorite. It is possible early settlers in the region did in fact witness the stone fall from the skies and believe it to be a message from Allah himself.

8King Tut’s Dagger


Photo credit:

The boy pharaoh King Tut and his untouched burial site has drawn people’s attention and imagination since its discovery in 1922. Three years after his discovery, Tut still had a few secrets hidden up his sleeves. Scientists studying the mummy found two daggers within the young king’s wraps. A gold dagger was found near his abdomen and an iron one near his hip. It was the latter that drew historians’ attention, as iron was extremely rare during the Bronze Age in which King Tut lived, died, and was mummified.

Further studies into the blade’s nickel, iron, and cobalt composition lead most scientists to agree that the blade is of extraterrestrial origin, being crafted from one of 11 meteorites discovered in the Egyptian Kingdom during the time of Tut’s rule. The rarity and value of such a dagger meant that it would most likely have been used ceremonially rather than practically.



Photo credit: Wikimedia

When viewed from above, the medieval German town of Nordlingen appears to be perfectly round. It was one of the only towns in Germany to still have its complete city walls still standing, and the reason for its round shape goes back millions of years before its founding in the ninth century.

What makes Nordlingen unique is that the city sits perfectly in a crater left by a meteor 14.5 million years ago. While the crater is roughly 25 kilometers across, the medieval founders built the walls of the city where the 1-kilometer-long meteorite sat millennia earlier. Remnants of the rock still can still be found literally within the walls of the city.

Up until the 1960s, the common theory was that the town was built in a volcano crater, but in more recent times, microscopic diamonds have been discovered within the walls and cathedral. These diamonds, while too small to be valuable, are remains of the meteor that struck down in the area years before the first humans would enter the area.

France 1492


Photo credit: Wikimedia

Only three months after Columbus set foot in the New World for the first time, a visitor came unexpectedly to visit the French village of Ensisheim. This visitor came in the form of a roughly 120-pound meteorite landing in a nearby field. Mentioned on this site before, the Ensisheim meteorite is the oldest preserved meteorite in the world. Though its impact was only witnessed by a single boy, the meteorite become an instant celebrity overnight.

People came from all over the region to take a piece of the stone for themselves, until church authorities claimed the rock and brought it back and chained it in the Ensisheim Church. Pieces were then given to the emperor and pope. Songs and stories were written about the stone, and it was viewed by many as a sign from God of either His blessing or wrath. Since the 15th century, the meteorite has become a symbol and point of pride for the town of Ensisheim, which it has never left.

5The Milanese Monk
Tortona Italy 1677


Photo credit: Wikimedia

While the people of Ensisheim love their meteor, not all carry such warm feelings toward them. A report published in Tortona, Italy, in 1677 speaks of an unnamed monk who was killed by a meteorite. At St. Mary’s convent, a monk fell dead when struck by something that appeared to come down from the heavens. Many monks in the convent ran to his side to find a hole in his side. As one monk recorded:

“Impelled by curiosity, they enlarged the aperture to examine the interior of it; they saw that it penetrated to the bone, and were much surprised to find at the bottom of the wound a roundish stone which had made it, and had killed this monk in a manner equally terrible and unexpected.”

If this report is to be trusted, it would be the first and only recorded death by meteor in history.

4Mark Twain And Halley’s Comet


Photo credit: NASA

While not a meteorite, as it has never touched down on Earth, Halley’s Comet is worthy of note here due to its close ties to a famous historical figure. The comet is famous for its easy visibility and predictability. After making a tight cut around the Sun and shooting as far off as Neptune, Halley’s Comet appears in the night sky with its distinctive bright tail every 75 or 76 years — once in a lifetime, for many. Famed author Mark Twain was lucky enough to have been on Earth for two of Halley’s orbits, but both times, he was rather preoccupied. The first time it passed, in 1835, he was being born. Twain always felt a personal connection to the comet, stating:

“I came in with Halley’s Comet . . . It is coming again . . . And I expect to go out with it . . . The Almighty has said, no doubt: ‘Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together.’ “

While he had no way of knowing how accurate his prediction was, sure enough, as the comet made its way past again in April 1910, Mark Twain quietly passed from this planet with it.

3Tunguska Event


Photo credit: Wikimedia

The Tunguska Event, which took place June 30, 1908, in Siberia, is the most well documented meteor impact event in modern times, as well as one of the most mysterious. Around 7:00 AM on the unassuming summer morning, windows shattered over 35 miles away, trees were blown on their side, hundreds of local reindeer died, and countless witnesses both saw light and felt heat from the blast as far away as Asia. The impact packed a punch as strong as 185 Hiroshima bombs. The only thing missing was the meteorite. Officials would not find a reason behind the explosion for almost 20 years.

While there were luckily no human casualties due its remote location, many locals were still reluctant to talk about it, believing that it was punishment from the Slavic god Ogdy. By following the path of blown-over trees, the mystery only grew when scientists found that ground zero did not contain a crater. At the center of the blast site, trees still stood but had been completely scorched of any branches or bark.

While there is still debate over the exact cause of the blast, NASA and other organizations agree a meteor approximately 120 feet across most likely entered the atmosphere above Siberia and detonated. The meteor is believed to have burned up before reaching the ground, explaining the lack of crater or evidence of meteor.

2Ann Hodges


Photo credit: National Geographic

November 30, 1954, was not a very exciting day for 34-year-old Ann Hodges of Sylacauga, Alabama. It was so uneventful in fact that she chose to take a nap on her couch, a decision that shook things up considerably. As she dozed, an 8.5-pound rock came rocketing through her ceiling, bouncing off a radio and hitting her in the thigh.

Awaking confused and in pain, Hodges found a meteorite lying in the middle of her living room. While luckily only suffering some bruising, she became the first person in modern history to be struck by a meteorite. Hodges quickly found herself a minor celebrity, and her situation became even more well known during a year-long legal battle over ownership of the meteorite. It had been taken away by the local authorities, which led to the question of whether extraterrestrial objects belonged to the government in which they land, or if they fell under the age-old law of finders keepers. The case was settled out of court with the Hodges walking away with the rock, which was later donated to a museum.

1Sochi Olympics


Photo credit: Alex Alishevskikh

In what may be the best documented and recorded meteor event in history, a 20-meter wide meteor exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia, in February 2013. The blast was the equivalent of 500 kilotons of TNT, knocking people off their feet, collapsing roofs, and shattering windows over 30 miles away. Over 1,200 people were hospitalized due to the explosion, the majority due to injuries from broken glass. Around four to six tons of meteorite fragments landed in the region, the largest chunk landing in a nearby lake.

When the Russian government recovered the rock from the lake’s depths for further study, they decided to take advantage of the meteor’s strike occurring so closely to the upcoming Winter Olympics they would be hosting. 10 of the gold medals given during the ceremony contained pieces of the Chelyabinsk meteorite in their center, giving the planet’s top athletes an award distinctly out of this world.

Henry Cain currently resides in California where he spends his free time writing and exploring.


Discovery Channel Is Kicking Reality TV Out, Embracing Science, And Teaching About Climate Change

Do you remember the good old days, when the Discovery Channel had educational and scientific documentaries on it? Are you disappointed with scripted reality shows? If so then you are in luck, because Discovery is shaking things up in a great way.

John Hoffman, the new boss of documentaries at the network, says that documentary programming at Discovery, Animal Planet and Science Channel, are going to undergo a dramatic shift.

Im also part of a group decision, throughout the company, to bring a lot more science. To elevate the scientists in the films.

I am the change. Hoffman says about the upcoming improvements to the network. He also says climate change is real and calls it the most important story of our time.

Many of the informative channels on cable TV have fallen into the reality show trap over the years, and quality of programming has suffered as a result. Hoffman wants to focus more on educational programming and ways that were compromising the environment, and ways we will hopefully save it. We can all guess how Fox News will feel about this.

Discovery had been under a lot of criticism of late, due to showing lavishly produced pseudo-science and docu-tainment pieces, instead of the science-based programming we all used to enjoy. The boldly progressive step by Discovery is in stark contrast to when earlier this month, National Geographic was bought by Rupert Murdoch and revamped into a Fox News magazine.


The first big step on this new path was the acquisition of Racing Extinction, a film from Academy Award-winning director, Louie Psihoyos. At the heart of the film is a detailed and frank explanation of climate change and its devastating effects on the planet. If this is an indicator of things to come, it appears that Discovery is going to have a brilliant future secured for it.

Watch the trailer for Racing Extinction:

Featured image via Wikicommons

! Trumps Middle East Business Ties Exposed As He Calls For Ban On Muslims In U.S. (VIDEO)

  • WATCH: Bob Dole Skewers Trump And Cruz Over Extremism, While Calling Obama A Very Good Man (VIDEO)

    • nowhereman

      Reality shows are anything but real. I think they designed to support the GOPTP by keeping most of us as stupid as possible so they can get elected. Reality shows in general were mainly a vehicle to break the writers union. Notice how we havent heard about any writers strikes lately?

    • zerosumgame0005

      I sure hope Pitbulls and Parolees survives! Tia RULZ!

    Top 10 Unusual Islands


    This is a list of islands that are somehow unusual or notable. The ranking from ten to one is somewhat arbitrary, in my opinion, since each island is unique in its own way and ratings can’t really apply (it would be kind of like asking which piece of music is better, “Stairway to Heaven” or “Eine kleine Nachtmusik”). So this one is really more like a grocery list than a “countdown from ten to one” list. The islands listed were chosen in part for their obscurity, which is why (for example) Easter Island is not on the list — everyone has heard of that one!



    The westernmost of the eight major Hawaiian islands, Ni’ihau (pronounced NEE-ee-how) is distinct from the other seven in that it is completely privately owned, having been purchased by Elizabeth Sinclair from the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1864. Visitors are seldom permitted, hence the island’s nickname, “The Forbidden Isle”, although in recent years the island has begun to allow very limited tourism (primarily safaris). Ni’ihau has a population of about 130 people, who speak Hawai’ian as their native language (although English is also spoken).

    Attu Island

    Attu-July-27-1943 Navytown

    Another westernmost island, this time the westernmost in the Aleutian Islands chain in Alaska. Although Attu Island is the Aleutians’ westernmost island, it actually lies in the Eastern hemisphere. Attu has a population of twenty, all of whom live and work in Attu Station, a United States Coast Guard LORAN (Long Range Aid to Navigation) facility. Apart from being the last island in the 1,200 mile (1,900 kilometer) long Aleutian Islands chain, Attu is also distinct in that it is the location of the only land-based conflict on American soil in all of World War II.

    Monuriki Island

    Monuriki Island Mamanucas Fiji

    Monuriki is a small, uninhabited island in the Mamanuca Island group in Fiji. Monuriki would not ordinarily be noteworthy for any particular reason, but it came into the spotlight when it was used as the primary filming location in the 2000 Tom Hanks film, “Cast Away”, about a man whose plane crashes and who, subsequently, ends up living on the island for four years. In the movie, the island is completely isolated, although in reality, there are several other islands within a few miles of it, including Tavua, with a population of some 2,400 people. Monuriki has now become a popular tourist destination due to its appearance in the film.

    Navassa Island

    Navassa Satellite1

    Navassa is an uninhabited Caribbean island about thirty miles west of Haiti and ninety miles south of Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. Its entire coastline consists of steep cliffs, making boat landings impossible. The United States annexed it in 1857, and spent the next few decades mining its extensive guano deposits. The island is now classified as a nature reserve, requiring United States government permission (which is rarely granted) to enter. Navassa is also one of the few United States territorial disputes — it is also claimed by Haiti.



    Spitsbergen is the largest of the Svalbard islands, north of Scandinavia. A Norwegian territory, it is home to the town of Longyearbyen, one of the world’s most northerly permanent settlements. As such, Spitsbergen contains a good deal of “world’s most northerlies”, most northerly church and most northerly airport being among them. Due to the danger of polar bears, whenever one travels anywhere on Spitsbergen outside of Longyearbyen, one is required by law to carry a rifle. Spitsbergen is also the location of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, where a variety of plant seeds are stored for safekeeping to preserve biodiversity in case of any kind of large-scale disaster.

    Palmyra Atoll

    Palmyra Atoll

    Palmyra is actually a collection of small islets, located roughly halfway between Hawaii and Samoa. The largest, Cooper Island, is privately owned and administered by The Nature Conservancy. The rest is owned by the United States federal government and is administered by its Fish and Wildlife Service. Palmyra is staffed by a small group of government scientists and Nature Conservancy volunteers for preservation and research. In 1974, Palmyra was the location of a double murder, later detailed in Vincent Bugliosi’s best selling true crime book, “And the Sea Will Tell”.

    Howland Island


    Howland lies about halfway between Hawaii and Australia, and is only about fifty miles north of the equator. Like many small Pacific islands, it was claimed by the United States and mined for its guano deposits. There was also an attempt at colonization, but it was interrupted by World War II, when Howland was attacked by Japanese bombers the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, killing two of the colonists and requiring the other two to be evacuated. No further attempt at colonization was made after the war. Howland is now a nature preserve and is probably best known for being the stop on Amelia Earhart’s around-the-world flight at which she never arrived.

    Pitcairn Island

    Pitcairn Island

    Pitcairn is the only inhabited island of the four in the Pitcairn Islands group. It is the last remaining British overseas territory in the Pacific. Pitcairn Island, with only fifty or so inhabitants, is the least populous and most remote jurisdiction in the world (being some 1300 miles, or 2100 kilometers, west of Chile). All of its inhabitants are descendants of the mutineers from the HMS Bounty and the Polynesians who accompanied them. The burned wreckage of the Bounty is still visible under the waters of Bounty Bay. Pitcairn makes what is supposedly some of the best honey in the world, so much so that even the Queen has praised its virtues. If you decide to buy some through their web site, though, be prepared for a long wait. Pitcairn has no airport, and Bounty Bay is small and shallow, so the island is visited and supplied only occasionally. Mail deliveries can be months apart. (I ordered some honey myself about two or three months ago and am told that it will still be about another month before it even gets off the island.) Pitcairn is unique in quite a few other ways as well, so much so that I had a hard time deciding which ones to include and which to leave out!

    Bouvet Island

    Bouvet Island

    Bouvet is a 19 square mile (49 square kilometer) volcanic island in the South Atlantic Ocean, about 1550 miles (2500 kilometers) south-southwest of South Africa. It is almost completely covered with ice. Most of the coastline consists of very steep cliffs, making landings difficult. Bouvet was originally a British territory, but Britain waived its claim and ceded the island to Norway, which maintains it today as a nature preserve. Bouvet has never been inhabited and almost certainly never will be, but it still has its own top-level Internet domain name, .bv, which is unused. Bouvet’s claim to fame is that it is the most remote island in the world. The nearest land, Queen Maud Land in Antarctica, lies some 1,100 miles (1,750 kilometers) to the south. Adventure travelers and amateur radio operators (using the island-specific prefix 3Y) therefore like to travel there.

    North Sentinel Island

    Article-1022822-016B043900000578-706 468X350

    North Sentinel Island lies some 20 miles (32 kilometers) west of Smith Island, in the Bay of Bengal. It is about 28 square miles (72 square kilometers) and is completely forested, with the exception of the thin strips of beach that encircle most of it. It is otherwise unremarkable, except that it is populated by one of the few remaining “uncontacted peoples” in the world. The Sentinelese are highly xenophobic and resist virtually all attempts at contact, frequently firing arrows at boats and helicopters that come too close to the island (sometimes killing the “intruders). Between their active isolationism and the difficulty of observing the island from the air, almost nothing is known of the Sentinelese — their language, culture, and even an accurate estimation of their numbers are all unknown. North Sentinel Island is technically part of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands Union Territory, but in practice, the local government has said that they intend to leave the island to its inhabitants, making it de facto autonomous.


    Here Are 8 Real-Life Doomsday Devices That May Destroy Us All.

    Do you know how many nuclear bombs exist today? How about the countries that control them? No?

    There are only small fringe groups that are concerned about nuclear warfare in our country. People raise their eyebrows when they hear about how those groups have well-stocked nuclear bomb shelters. Since the decline of the Cold War, the fear of nuclear death isn”t exactly widespread.

    You might need a reminder that there are a few of insanely powerful weapons that exist … and in the wrong hands? they could destroy us all.

    1. Neutron bomb.

    Neutron bomb.

    Samuel Cohen, the inventor of the neutron bomb, once described it as a “discriminate weapon” as it kills all the people in its blast radius without decimating the buildings. It is the high-energy of the neurons that causes the killing blow, not the heat or nuclear fallout, allowing enemies to take the facilities of a city, without dealing with the pesky enemies that inhabit it.

    2. The Predator and Predator B (aka The Reaper).

    The Predator and Predator B (aka The Reaper).

    The scary thing about drones are how removed it”s pilots are from actual combat. One man thousands of miles away can kill an entire city with the same ease as pressing the accelerate button on Mario Kart 64.

    3. R-36 ICBM

    R-36 ICBM

    The scariest thing about these ballistic missiles is that they were never designed for accuracy. To compensate for the fact that it normally misses its target, the Russians upped its nuclear potency to up to 38 warheads.

    4. The Airborne Laser/Boeing YAL-1.

    The Airborne Laser/Boeing YAL-1.

    It”s essentially just a plane with a giant laser attached to the front but that”s terrifying sounding enough for me. It can hit it”s target (usually ballistic weapons) from hundreds of miles away. And lasers, guys! LASERS!

    5. Biological Warfare.

    Biological Warfare.

    The only thing worse than instantly wiping out all life, is inflicting a Chimera virus upon and watch the suffering slowly grow and decay.

    6. Tsar Bomb.

    Tsar Bomb.

    The most powerful nuclear weapon ever detonated. It”s blast radius is 3.5 kilometers and is approximately the height of the Eiffel tower.

    7. The Trident II D5 SLBM.

    The Trident II D5 SLBM.

    These guys are a little less powerful than the R-36″s, but a way more accurate and can strategically be shot from anywhere from submarines due to the fact that they don”t ignite until after they don”t ignite until they leave the water.

    8. Nimitz Class Aircraft Carrier

    Nimitz Class Aircraft Carrier

    Each of these babies has enough fuel to not need a refill for 23 years. They each can hold up to 130 aircraft and are basically designed to wage war against a country singlehandedly.

    Most of these weapons are in the hands of American forces… but the technology isn”t exactly new. There could be lots of powerful weapons hiding in bunkers all over the world. (Good luck sleeping tonight!)


    This Is What Technically Happens When A Jellyfish Stings You. Yikes.

    If youve ever been stung by a jellyfish or seen the look on someones face after theyve gotten to close to the free-floating sea creatures, youre well aware of how much it hurts. Its not very hard to figure out. Something thats quite a bit more difficult to understand is how the gelatinous beings can be the sources of such pain. Some people think that there is some kind of electricity (or some dark magic, maybe) involved.

    Well, as it turns out, getting stung by a jellyfish involves being pricked by tiny, venomous organelles called nemacysts. If those words alone arent enough to make the hair on your neck stand up, seeing them in action likely will be.

    Take a look at this microscopic footage of a jellyfish sting that was shot with a high-speed camera. Its actually pretty cool to see, as long as you dont have any plans to go to the beach in the near future.

    (via It”s Okay To Be Smart, H/T io9)

    If you thought that was bad, imagine getting stung by one of these jellyfish.

    The 5 Deadliest Jellyfish in the World

    5. Sea Nettle (Chrysaora)

    5. Sea Nettle (Chrysaora)

    4. Lions Mane Jellyfish (Cyanea capillata)

    4. Lions Mane Jellyfish (Cyanea capillata)

    3. Portuguese Man o War (Physalia physalis)

    3. Portuguese Man o War (Physalia physalis)

    2. Irukandji Jellyfish (Carukia barnesi)

    2. Irukandji Jellyfish (Carukia barnesi)

    1. Box Jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri)

    1. Box Jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri)

    (via Planet Deadly)

    Hm, I think Ill stick to the pool for the rest of the summer. Actually, I might as well play it safe and avoid water altogether. Does rubbing hand sanitizer all over your body count as a shower?

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    10 Common Misconceptions About Space

    A lot of people have some pretty big misconceptions about space. To be fair, very few of us have ever been, there’s a lot more to study before anybody really knows what’s actually going on up there, and movies tend to give us the complete wrong idea. In the interests of setting things straight, here are 10 common misconceptions about space, and the truth behind them.

    10People Explode

    Perhaps one of the oldest and most common misconceptions is that we would explode if exposed unprotected to the vacuum of space. The logic here is that, since there is no pressure, we would simply bloat and pop, like a balloon that flew too high. But it may shock you to learn that humans are far more resilient than balloons. Jut like we don’t pop when jabbed with a needle, we wouldn’t pop in space—our bodies are just too tough for it. We would bloat a bit, that much is true. But our bones, skin, and other organs aren’t fragile enough to give way and burst unless something is actively tearing them.

    In fact, several people have already been exposed to extremely low pressure environments when working on space missions. In 1966, one man was testing out a space suit when it decompressed at 120,000 feet. He lost consciousness, but did not explode, and made a full recovery.

    9People Freeze


    This is one misconception mostly perpetuated by movies. Many films set in space will have a scene where one character finds themselves outside the ship without a suit. They quickly begin to freeze and, unless they manage to get back inside, turn into an icicle and float away. The reality is the complete opposite. You wouldn’t freeze if you were exposed to space, you’d overheat.

    We probably all remember those diagrams of convection currents in science class. Water over a heat source will heat up, rise to the top, cool down, sink to the bottom, and repeat. This happens because the water at the top transfers its heat to the air around it, which causes the water to contract, thus becoming more dense, and sinking. In space, as the name suggests, there is nothing to transfer your heat to, making cooling down enough to freeze impossible. So your body will continue to work away, generating heat as it does. Of course, before you became uncomfortably hot, you’d be dead.

    8Your Blood Would Boil

    space walk 1

    This myth has nothing do do with the fact that your body would overheat if you were exposed to empty space. Instead it comes from the fact that the boiling point of any liquid has a direct relationship with the pressure of its environment. The higher the pressure, the higher the boiling point and vice versa. This is because it’s easier for a liquid to turn to gas when there’s less pressure compressing it into its liquid state. So it’s not a huge leap of logic for people to assume that in space, where there is no pressure, liquids would boil, including your blood.

    The Armstrong line is when atmospheric pressure is so low that liquids can boil at body temperature. The problem here is that while exposed liquids would boil in space, your blood wouldn’t. However, bodily fluids such as the those in your eyes and mouth would. In fact, the man who decompressed at 120,000 feet said the saliva boiled right off his tongue. The “boiling” wouldn’t actually be searing hot, it’d be more like they were drying out. But your blood, unlike your saliva, is inside a closed system, and still has your veins to keep it compressed in the liquid state. Even though you’d be inside a vacuum, the fact that your blood is locked inside your body means it won’t turn into gas and float away.

    7The Sun


    The Sun is one of the first things you study when learning about space. It’s a big fiery ball that all the planets spin around, and it’s just far enough away that it keeps us warm, but doesn’t cause us all to burst into flames. Given that we could never have existed were it not for the heat and light given off by the Sun, it’s surprising that so many of us have a pretty basic misconception about it: that it’s on fire. If you’ve ever burnt yourself on a flame then congratulations, you’ve had more fire on you than the sun ever has or will. In reality, the sun is a big ball of gas that gives off light and heat energy through nuclear fusion, which occurs when two hydrogen atoms combine and form helium. So the Sun does give off light and heat, but there is no conventional fire involved at all. It is simply a giant, warm glow.

    6Black Holes Are Funnel-Shaped


    This is another common misconception that can be put down to the portrayal of black holes in movies and cartoons. Obviously black holes are essentially “invisible,” but for the sake of the audience they’re made to look like ominous whirlpools of doom. They’re shown as almost 2D, funnel-like objects, with an entrance to nothingness on one side only. In real life however, this representation could not be further form the truth. A real black hole is actually a sphere. There’s no one side that will pull you in, it’s just like a planet with a lot of gravity. If you pass by it too close on any side, you’ll get pulled in.



    We’ve all seen clips of spacecraft re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere at some point. It’s a rough ride, and things tend to get extremely hot on the surface of the craft. Most of us will have been told that this is because of the friction between the craft and the atmosphere, which is an explanation that seems to make sense: A spacecraft is surrounded by nothing, and then suddenly shooting through an atmosphere at unfathomable speed. Of course things are going to get hot.

    Well the truth is that friction has less than one percent to do with the searing heat associated with re-entry. While it is a contributing factor, the vast majority of the heat comes from compression. As the craft hurtles back down to Earth, the air it passes through is compressed and collects around the craft. This is known as the bow shock. The air in the bow shock is trapped by the spacecraft now pushing it around. The speed of this causes the air to heat up, allowing no time for decompression or cooling. While some of that heat is transferred to the craft and absorbed by the heat shield, the dramatic re-entry we see is mostly the air around the craft, and is exactly what scientists hope to see.

    4Comet Tails


    Picture a comet for a moment. Odds are most of you pictured a chunk of ice shooting through space with a stream of light or fire trailing behind it because of its speed. Well it may come as a surprise that the way a comet tail trails has nothing to do with the direction in which the comet is moving. That’s because, unlike with meteors, the tail of a comet is not the result of friction or break up. It’s caused by heat and solar wind, which melt the ice and send dust particles flying in the opposite direction. For this reason, the tail of a comet does not drag behind it, but will always point away from the Sun.



    Since the demotion of Pluto, Mercury has been our smallest planet. It’s also the closest planet to the Sun, so it would be natural to assume that it’s our system’s hottest planet. Well, not only is that untrue, but Mercury can actually get pretty darn cold. First off, at its hottest, Mercury is about 801 degrees Fahrenheit (427 Celsius). If this was the constant temperature for the entire planet all the time, it would still be cooler than Venus, which is 860 degrees Fahrenheit (460 Celsius). The reason Venus is so much hotter despite being 49,889,664 kilometers (31 million miles) further away is that Venus has an atmosphere of CO2 to trap in the heat, whereas Mercury has nothing.

    But another reason Mercury can get so cold, apart from the lack of atmosphere, is to do with its rotation and orbit. A complete orbit of the sun for Mercury takes about 88 Earth days, while complete rotation of the planet is about 58 Earth days. This means that night lasts 58 days on the the planet, giving the temperature plenty of time to drop down to a cool -279 degrees Fahrenheit (-173 Celsius).



    Everybody knows about the Curiosity rover on Mars and the important scientific research it’s conducting. But people seem to have forgotten about many of the other probes we’ve sent out over the years. The Opportunity rover landed on Mars in 2003, and was given a 90 day life expectancy. Almost 10 years later, it’s still roving.

    Most people seem to think that we’ve never managed to send a probe to any planet other than Mars. Of course, we’ve sent all sorts of satellites into orbit, but landing on a planet is vastly more complex. Still, it’s actually a lot more common than you think. Between 1970 and 1984, the USSR successfully landed eight probes on the surface of Venus. The difference here is that the atmosphere on Venus is considerably more hostile, and even if a rover managed to land it would soon be cooked and crushed. The longest a rover lasted was about two hours, much longer than anticipated.

    If we move a little further out into space, we’ll reach Jupiter. Now Jupiter is even trickier for rovers than Mars or Venus, seeing as it’s made almost entirely of gas, which isn’t ideal for driving on. But that didn’t stop scientists from sending in a probe. In 1989, the Galileo spacecraft was sent to examine Jupiter and its moons, which it did for the next 14 years. Six years into its mission, it dropped a probe down to Jupiter, which beamed information back about its composition. Although another craft is on its way to Jupiter, this remains the only probe to enter its atmosphere, and the information it gathered is invaluable. It sent completely unexpected measurements, forcing scientists to totally reevaluate how they thought planets formed and worked.


    This one is so seemingly obvious that many people will have a hard time believing it’s not true. Satellites, spacecraft, astronauts, and so on do not experience zero-gravity. True zero-gravity, or micro-gravity, barely exists anywhere in space, and certainly no human has ever experienced it. Most people are under the impression that astronauts and everything else in spacecrafts are floating around because they’ve gone so far away from Earth that they are no longer affected by its gravitational pull, when actually it’s the presence of gravity that causes floating.

    When orbiting Earth, or any other celestial body large enough to have significant gravity, an object is actually falling. But since the Earth is constantly moving, things like spacecrafts don’t crash into it. The Earth’s gravity is attempting to pull the craft down onto its surface, but Earth keeps moving, so the craft keeps falling. This perpetual fall is what results in the illusion of zero-gravity. The astronauts are also falling inside the craft, but since they’re moving at the same speed, it looks like they’re floating. The same phenomenon could be experienced in a falling elevator or plane. In fact, the weightless scenes for the movie Apollo 13 were filmed in a falling plane used to train astronauts. The plane climbs up to 30,000 feet before going into a near-freefall, which allows for 23 seconds of “zero-gravity.” Although it lasts for less than a minute, it’s exactly what real astronauts experience in space.