The Failure of Foreign Aid

"For decades, it has been obvious that development aid as a rule achieves exactly the opposite of that which is desired." Spiegel on the Millennium Development Goals.

"When the United Nations agreed on the Millennium Development Goals a decade ago, it was a triumph of consensus. But with five years to go before a self-imposed deadline, failure on many fronts is a real possibility. German commentators discuss why this is so. ... The failure of development aid is not the result of a lack of money. Insiders quietly report that in many countries they have problems finding enough worthwhile projects to spend their budgets on. There must then be other reasons to explain why some countries make no progress while others that were once just as underdeveloped now boast of phenomenal growth rates."

Unraveling the mystery behind dogs' floppy ears

Dogs' floppy ears may be part of why they and other domesticated animals love humans so much.

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash
Surprising Science
  • Nearly all domestic animals share several key traits in addition to friendliness to humans, traits such as floppy ears, a spotted coat, a shorter snout, and so on.
  • Researchers have been puzzled as to why these traits keep showing up in disparate species, even when they aren't being bred for those qualities. This is known as "domestication syndrome."
  • Now, researchers are pointing to a group of a cells called neural crest cells as the key to understanding domestication syndrome.
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Russian reporters discover 101 'tortured' whales jammed in offshore pens

Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.

(VL.ru)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Russian news network discovers 101 black-market whales.
  • Orcas and belugas are seen crammed into tiny pens.
  • Marine parks continue to create a high-price demand for illegal captures.
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A dark matter hurricane is crashing into Earth

Giving our solar system a "slap in the face."

Surprising Science
  • A stream of galactic debris is hurtling at us, pulling dark matter along with it
  • It's traveling so quickly it's been described as a hurricane of dark matter
  • Scientists are excited to set their particle detectors at the onslffaught
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