New news about old humanity. HUMAN OCCUPATION SITE IN CALIFORNIA IS REALLY OLD? The most startling claim about the human line is in a free-to-read Nature paper that asserts humans were in southern California 130,000
WOOLLY MAMMOTH DE-EXTINCTION IS FAKE NEWS De-extinction–ideas for raising long-gone organisms from the dead–is back. The highest-profile project of the de-extinction movement is viewed in the media almost exclusively as a plan to bring back
GENETIC PRIVACY: GATTACA REVISITED? It’s not a formal part of the cruel, terrifying Trumpcare/Ryancare bill Congress is considering to repeal-and-replace Obamacare. But last week a Congressional committee approved another piece of cruel, terrifying medical legislation.
VIRAL DISEASES: H7N9 BIRD FLU China is undergoing its worst epidemic of human cases of H7N9 bird flu since the virus’s discovery in 2013, some 460 cases between last October and February of this year.
COITUS COUNTING If you have assumed, on the basis of news stories about recent papers exploring ancient and modern human DNA, that scientists have now determined that anatomically modern humans and Neandertals mated 3 (or
ANIMAL GENOME OF THE WEEK: CANIS LUPUS FAMILIARIS So is this a trend, the animal genome of the week? Last week pigs. This week, dogs. First things first: dog origins. A perennial hot topic, the
DUELING PAPERS ABOUT THE FIRST AMERICANS Oh, goody. Dueling papers. Always a treat. And dueling papers in the same week in Science and Nature, an extra-special treat. The topic a hot one, as befits dueling
WHEW! The Affordable Care Act (aka ACA, aka Obamacare) subsidies to help people buy health insurance got saved by the US Supreme Court after all, with the somewhat unexpected help (unexpected by me, anyway) of
Coal black At Bad Astronomy, Phil Plait says President Obama’s proposed new plan for slowing down atmospheric carbon dioxide by reducing coal use for generating electricity is huge. But is it huge? As a
Gloom and doom As you probably know, the latest authoritative climate change report was released early this week to a world apparently too exhausted, or distracted, to take much interest in the upcoming calamities.