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Finnish biologist explains why Trump’s plan to stop forest fires with rakes is utter nonsense

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Many Finnish citizens have been mocking President Donald Trump for claiming that they stop forest fires in their country by raking leaves.

Over the weekend, Trump claimed that Finnish President Sauli Niinistö told him that raking was the key to his country’s success in preventing forest fires, although Niinistö has denied he ever told Trump anything about raking.

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“I was with the president of Finland and he said: ‘We have a much different — we’re a forest nation,'” Trump claimed. “He called it a forest nation, and they spent a lot of time on raking and cleaning and doing things. And they don’t have any problem.”

However, a Finnish biologist has written an email to Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo that goes into great detail about why it’s nonsensical to say that Finland is able to contain forest fires through raking.

In fact, he says that if Finland does face the prospect of greater forest fires in the coming years, climate change will be a good reason why.

“Forest fires in Finland are much limited by the snowy winter (length varies acc. to year and region, but traditionally around 3 months, is shortening due to climate change),” he writes. “Snow and ice are solid water, forests cannot burn in wintertime.”

What’s more, the biologist says that raking the forests would do more harm than good when it comes to the overall health of the trees.

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“The continuously falling needles and twigs, when they decay, return important nutrients back to the forest trees,” he writes. “Removing them regularly would deprive the trees and other plants from the bulk of long-term nutrients, not to speak of the extremely complex mesh of nutrient chains of thousands of other forest organisms, from fungi and insects to birds and mammals.”

Read the biologist’s entire analysis here.

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2020 Election

Here are 3 winners and 3 losers from the 2020 Democratic presidential primary debate

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Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined the other leading Democratic presidential primary candidates Wednesday night in the fieriest evening of the race so far.

His presence on the stage drew fire from the other candidates, but it also seemed to change the overall tone of the debate, with more attacks, counter-attacks, and passion than was generally seen earlier in the campaign.

Here’s a (necessarily subjective!) list of the winners and losers from the fray:

Winners

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) — Warren hit her stride right as the debate started by attacking Bloomberg for his record on the mistreatment of women, racist policies, and his tax returns. She repeatedly came back to skewer the former mayor, making herself the biggest and most notable presence in the debate. But importantly, she also continuously brought the discussion back to the issues she cares about — like expanding health care, environmental justice,  and consumer protection — while getting in digs at the other candidates on the stage.

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After bombing in #DemDebate internet changes Mike Bloomberg’s ‘death’ date on Wikipedia

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Someone online changed former Mayor Michael Bloomberg's information on Wikipedia during the Wednesday debate to say that he died on Feb. 19.

After being ripped to shreds during the MSNBC Democratic debate, it became clear that Bloomberg wasn't quite as prepared as the other Democratic candidates.

The Wikipedia article was also changed to indicate that his cause of death was Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

https://twitter.com/joshrobin/status/1230333066280886273

Bloomberg had several unfortunate moments, namely his refusal to release female accusers from nondisclosure agreements, he came out in favor of fracking, he blamed India for China's involvement in climate change, and many many more things.

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Internet slams ‘cringe-worthy elitist’ Mike Bloomberg for saying he’s too rich to use TurboTax

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At the Democratic presidential debate in Nevada, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg stumbled after being asked when he will release his tax returns, when he suggested that he "can't go to TurboTax" because he's too wealthy.

Moderator: "You've said you'll release your tax returns, but why do Democrats have to wait?"

Bloomberg: "We do business around the world. The document will be thousands of pages. I can't go to TurboTax."

😂😂😂#DemDebate

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