Former US President Bill Clinton took a diplomatic route this weekend and poked fun at Democrats, Republicans and himself at the Gridiron Club’s annual dinner.
"Former President Bill Clinton poked fun at his ex-veep Saturday, telling the Gridiron Club's annual dinner that he was speaking on the night before the start of spring, ‘otherwise known to Al Gore as proof of global warming.’ Clinton also made fun of Republicans, his White House successors, his own health and his audience of reporters, saying he was there because ‘I really didn't have anything much better to do tonight.’ Clinton, who stood in for President Obama, said Democrats are going to pass health care. ‘It may not happen in my lifetime, or Dick Cheney's, but hopefully by Easter,’ he said referring to his and the former vice president's heart ailments. Obama, who's preparing for Sunday's probable House vote on health care reform, spoke to the dinner via videotape, saying that when he called Clinton to stand in for him, the former president said, ‘Let me clear my schedule for the next three years.’ Clinton said Obama told him he was busy in the White House ‘polishing up his Nobel Peace Prize.’ Obama, he joked, asked: ‘You've got one of these, don't you?’ -- a joke rooted in reports Clinton is unhappy that the current president got a Nobel Prize after only months in office while Clinton failed to be awarded one after long efforts to bring peace to the former Yugoslavia and the Middle East."
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How you talk to people with drug addiction might save their life.
- Addiction is a learning disorder; it's not a sign that someone is a bad person.
- Tough love doesn't help drug-addicted people. Research shows that the best way to get people help is through compassion, empathy and support. Approach them as an equal human being deserving of respect.
- As a first step to recovery, Maia Szalavitz recommends the family or friends of people with addiction get them a complete psychiatric evaluation by somebody who is not affiliated with any treatment organization. Unfortunately, warns Szalavitz, some people will try to make a profit off of an addicted person without informing them of their full options.
The rise of anti-scientific thinking and conspiracy is a concerning trend.
- Fifty years later after one of the greatest achievements of mankind, there's a growing number of moon landing deniers. They are part of a larger trend of anti-scientific thinking.
- Climate change, anti-vaccination and other assorted conspiratorial mindsets are a detriment and show a tangible impediment to fostering real progress or societal change.
- All of these separate anti-scientific beliefs share a troubling root of intellectual dishonesty and ignorance.
China's Chang'e 4 biosphere experiment marks a first for humankind.
- China's Chang'e 4 lunar lander touched down on the far side of the moon on January 3.
- In addition to a lunar rover, the lander carried a biosphere experiment that contains five sets of plants and some insects.
- The experiment is designed to test how astronauts might someday grow plants in space to sustain long-term settlements.
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