President Obama Takes First Steps Towards a New World Order

President Obama may have gone on Jay Leno last night to reach out to the everyday American, but this week the Administration has been quietly reaching out to the rest of the world and, at least ceremonially, starting the U.S. on a path toward rejoining the world community.

This morning the New York Times reports that Obama recorded a video message talking directly to the people of Iran, offering to move the two countries' relationship in a new direction after decades of hostility and mistrust, and 30 years after the U.S. broke off diplomatic relations. 


 

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad made waves when he visited New York in 2007 and laughably asserted that there were no gay people in Iran. But while his ongoing persecution of homosexuals is more bark than bite, the Obama Administration has at least moved America's policy into the 21st century. On Wednesday the United States formally endorsed the United Nations resolution that homosexuality should be universally decriminalized, something our evangelical-pandering former President refused to do.

 

And while the United States has lagged behind our peers in climate science, censoring scientists' findings and refusing to ratify the Kyoto Protcol, that might be changing too, at least symbolically. The muzzle is now off our government scientific agencies, and this week, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and a host of other organizations released Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science , a pamphlet explaining the ins and outs of climate science and why it can be so complicated. 

 

Certainly videos, declarations and pamphlets are only first steps. But at least we're walking in the right direction again.

Why a federal judge ordered White House to restore Jim Acosta's press badge

A federal judge ruled that the Trump administration likely violated the reporter's Fifth Amendment rights when it stripped his press credentials earlier this month.

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 16: CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta (R) returns to the White House with CNN Washington bureau chief Sam Feist after Federal judge Timothy J. Kelly ordered the White House to reinstate his press pass November 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. CNN has filed a lawsuit against the White House after Acosta's press pass was revoked after a dispute involving a news conference last week. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Acosta will be allowed to return to the White House on Friday.
  • The judge described the ruling as narrow, and didn't rule one way or the other on violations of the First Amendment.
  • The case is still open, and the administration may choose to appeal the ruling.
Keep reading Show less

How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
Keep reading Show less

Scientists just voted to change the definition of a kilogram

The definition of a kilogram will now be fixed to Planck's constant, a fundamental part of quantum physics.

Greg L via Wikipedia
Surprising Science
  • The new definition of a kilogram is based on a physical constant in quantum physics.
  • Unlike the current definition of a kilogram, this measurement will never change.
  • Scientists also voted to update the definitions of several other measurements in physics.
Keep reading Show less