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New study finds high levels of arsenic in groundwater near fracking sites

By Theodoric Meyer, ProPublica A recently published study by researchers at the University of Texas at Arlington found elevated levels of arsenic and other heavy metals in groundwater near natural gas fracking sites in Texas’ Barnett Shale. While the findings are far from conclusive, the study provides further evidence tying…

IRS manual detailed DEA’s secret spying program

By John Shiffman and David Ingram WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Details of a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration program that feeds tips to federal agents and then instructs them to alter the investigative trail were published in a manual used by agents of the Internal Revenue Service for two years. The practice…

Pope Francis strengthens Vatican law against money laundering, terrorism financing

Pope Francis intensified the fight against corruption in the Vatican on Thursday, strengthening the law to counter “money laundering, the financing of terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.” The short “Motu Proprio”, a decree of Francis’s own initiative, strengthens the supervision of financial transactions “in response to…

‘Revolutionary’ honors Chavez with her ‘people’s barber shop’

Ana Urdaneta, 64, proudly displays a poster of Venezuela’s late leader Hugo Chavez in her makeshift “people’s barber shop” in downtown Caracas. Although her beloved president died of cancer earlier this year, Urdaneta says his Venezuelan revolution goes on, with every snip of her scissors. Urdaneta’s particular calling is providing…

British prime minister urges boycott of social network sites over cyberbullying suicide

British Prime Minister David Cameron on Thursday urged Internet users to boycott certain social networking sites, after a teenage girl who was bullied online committed suicide. Cameron described the death of 14-year-old Hannah Smith, who hanged herself last week after receiving abuse on the website ask.fm, as “absolutely tragic”. He…

Hackers plant false Mikhail Gorbachev death rumor on state media Twitter accounts

The last Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev was forced to deny rumours of his death after hackers planted a false report on Twitter accounts of a state news agency. “I’m alive and well,” Gorbachev late Wednesday told the website of Novaya Gazeta newspaper, using a blanked-out Russian expletive to describe his…

Obama to mark 50th anniversary of MLK’s ‘dream’ speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial

US President Barack Obama will mark the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech by speaking from the same steps at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington. The August 28 event in the US capital will take place on the exact spot where King delivered his famous…

Sun’s magnetic field about to flip

The Sun’s magnetic field is about to flip. According to recent measurements gathered by NASA-supported observatories, the vast solar magnetic field is on the verge of making its regularly occurring reversal. The solar magnetic field reverses in polarity…  …

Human-to-rat, brain-to-brain control achieved by neuro scientists

Imagine if you will…a world in which, simply by selectively looking at a viewing screen, you are able to command a specific movement — a grasping hand, say — in another person without any physical contact (or their explicit consent)… But…  …

Are two heads better than one? The psychology of Pacific Rim

In Pacific Rim, pilots drive giant robots using the power of their minds. How far away from science reality is the science fiction? What is it like to be a bat? That was the question posed in 1974 by the noted American philosopher Thomas Nagel. Nagel argued that if you…

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