Monday, June 7, 2010

Plants and Infections

Apparently, the plants that have genes that make them more hardy and less susceptible to plant infections and diseases also have the disadvantage of being extremely slow growers. The longer a plant is in a young, not adult stage, the more exposed it is to danger of that kind. This beneficial gene comes with a trade off. The growth gene for the immunity gene. This is valid and important because they will most likely find a way to link this to humans and it will be interesting.

Maybe its just me who feels like this matters to humans. What do you think? Is this an important discovery in science research or not? Why?

New Rasmussen Generic Ballot Numbers

Earlier Today, the polling service Rasmussen Reports came out with new polling data comparing a generic republican to a generic democrat. Although initially the results are unsurprising (Republicans are up 9 points over Democrats), further calculation and comparison turns out to reveal more interesting data. Neil Stevens of Red State Blog calculated the swing form democrat to Republican from last election, and based on these numbers (when third party victories are factored out) it is an astronomically high 22 point swing towards the Republican side from 2008. This hypothetically translates into a 60 House Seat gain for republicans this November; but as the author notes, a lot can still happen between now and then.
1. How much stock do you put in polls such as this one when predicting electoral outcomes?
2. Do you agree with the conclusions the article's author drew from the data?

States and Medicaid

During these hard economic times states are suffering in many areas, one of them being Medicaid. Both state and federal governments are struggling with budget cuts and with where to find the very needed money for Medicaid.

Do you think Congress should pass the 6 month extension on Medicare funding?
How reliant should states be on federal money for Medicaid?

Friday, June 4, 2010

Obama Appointment

Obama to appoint a new director of national intelligence. He has selected Lt. Gen. James R. Clapper Jr. to fill the post left by Adm. Dennis C. Blair.

Respond to one of the two:
1) Clapper's appointment is quite controversial because of his military position. Many people believe someone outside the military should be appointed. What do you think?
2) According to the article, President Obama forced Mr. Blair to resign from his post as director of national intelligence. How do you think he did that?

Oh God...Not another post on the oil spill

While you guys are probably very sick of responding to articles concerning the recent oil spill, I wanted to discuss something different about the incident. The article that I have posted discusses the recent news that employees of BP may in fact have to face criminal charges for the spill. The articles details the three environment laws, the Clean Water Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Refuse Act, all of which have been violated by the spill and how having done so could lead to massive fines and even imprisonment. While it is agreed upon that no one meant for the spill to happen, the negligence that was associated with it is a criminal offense. What do you guys think? Should some people have to spend time in the clinker?

Texas Execution

Texas is about to execute a man 32 years after his crime. Many say he has changed for the better. He even wrote a letter to the family of the deceased sounding fully regretful and responsible for his actions. Even police officers speak of the changed character. What should happen? Should this "changed man" be killed on June 15th the senior graduation day?

Approval Ratings

Recently, Obama's approval ratings have been steadily declining. How do you feel that Obama has been doing as president? And do you think that his approval ratings will decrease, increase, or remain the roughly the same?

Oil Spill

A recent oil spill in the Gulf has been causing chaos for many. Fisheries and fragile wetlands are continuously being damaged with each passing day. My question is who do you think should be responsible for the spill and to clean it up? Obama? BP? Also what do you think should be done to solve the problem.