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WITH THE DEATH OF ONE OF THE LAST THREE SHAKERS, AN AMERICAN RELIGIOUS TRADITION TAKES A STEP CLOSER TO EXTINCTION

On January 2, 2017, a small, distinctive, and beautiful world in our midst moved a bit closer to its own end. The first Monday of the New Year saw the passing of Sister Frances Carr, one of the last three remaining Shakers. Sister Frances was a member of the Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village in New Gloucester, Maine who spent her …

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Brad Stulberg – You Can Be Happy and Lonely at the Same Time

Thanks to the proliferation of digital technologies, never has it been so easy and inexpensive to reach — pretty much anywhere and at any time — family, friends, and colleagues. I regularly Facebook-message with a Sherpa friend who lives in Nepal; use Twitter to get real-time updates from an athlete I coach who lives in Australia; participate in an ongoing …

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MIKE LOFGREN – Maybe This Is How Democracy Ends

The election of Donald Trump has triggered as much wonderment abroad as it has in the United States. David Runciman, a professor of politics at the University of Cambridge, has written in the London Review of Books a provocative reflection on the nature of democracy in the age of Trump: “Is this how democracy ends?” There is much to praise …

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Mary Hoff – 15 Most Surprising Trends for 2017

What should we be thinking about when we think about the future of biodiversity, conservation and the environment? An international team of experts in horizon scanning, science communication and conservation recently asked that question as participants in the eighth annual Horizon Scan of Emerging Issues for Global Conservation and Biological Diversity. The answers they came up, just published in the …

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Deirdre Fulton – Trump’s Fast-Food CEO Labor Pick: ‘Anti-Family, Anti-Worker, Anti-Jobs’

Fast-food executive Andrew Puzder, who opposes raising the federal minimum wage and “has championed every aspect of right-wing trickle-down economics,” is expected to be President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for labor secretary, news outlets reported Thursday. Puzder is the chief executive of CKE Restaurants, which includes the burger chains Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. among its brands. He advised and fundraised for …

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Tim Radford – Northeastern US faces fiercer hurricanes

LONDON, 7 December, 2016 – Hurricanes could hit harder and more often along the northern Atlantic coast of the US. A new study based on 450 years of documentary and fossil evidence suggests that climate change driven by human combustion of fossil fuels is shifting the pathways of the hurricanes linked with the western Caribbean, and that global warming in …

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Dahr Jamail – James Mattis Is a War Criminal: I Experienced His Attack on Fallujah Firsthand

Retired marine General James Mattis, who retired from being the head of CENTCOM in 2013, has become known recently for his stance against what he calls “political Islam.” “Is political Islam in the best interest of the United States?” Mattis said at the far right-wing Heritage Foundation in 2015. “I suggest the answer is no, but we need to have …