The March record is the eleventh straight monthly record for background checks. The unprecedented streak, which began in May 2015, has included all-time records for both monthly and yearly sales. With 7,682,141 checks processed through the FBI’s National Instant Background Check System, 2016 is currently on pace to set another all time yearly sales record.
FBI background checks are widely considered a reliable gauge for gun sales because all sales conducted through federally licensed firearms dealers must include one.
There is just something about US President Obama that leads the thoughts of intelligent and self-respecting persons to the idea of weapons — in the US, guns in particular.
Plenty of other weapons would do as well — or better in many situations — than firearms. But as long as guns are readily available, they will likely keep most people from getting their hands on much more efficient methods of slaughtering perceived enemies.
Climate Change: A Slippery Topic for Slippery Characters
Remember that silly ol’ “freedom of speech” chestnut those silly elderly white guys founded this country on? Well the attorneys general of 16 Democrat-controlled states are looking to do away with that boring old rule and are now announcing their intentions to prosecute companies trying to speak out against global warming alarmism. __ Federalist Papers
Like all grand crusades, “climate change” is merely an excuse for a money and power grab by well-placed opportunists.
If You Want to Live, Pay Attention
Where do AGEs [advanced glycation end-products] come from? They are a class of waste produced by the normal operation of cellular metabolism, and which can also arrive in the diet. They accumulate in tissues with advancing age. There are various types of AGE, but the important ones are the long-lasting varieties based on glucosepane that the body cannot effectively break down. They form cross-links in the extracellular matrix, degrading tissue function by altering its structural properties, as is the case in age-related loss of elasticity in skin and blood vessels. Other classes of AGEs – such as N(6)-carboxymethyllysine (CML) – are probably involved in different ways in the progression of age-related disease and especially in metabolic dysfunctions such as type 2 diabetes, as they can increase chronic inflammation through their interactions with cells.
AGEs cause both inflammation and cross-linked stiffening in tissues. But in some cases, it is possible to mitigate some of the damage that AGEs inevitably cause:
One way to slow AGEing involves the use of certain supplements that have been shown—in laboratory experiments, animal studies, or human clinical trials—to inhibit the formation of AGEs. Notable in this regard are: benfotiamine, a fat-soluble form of thiamine (vitamin B1); the amino acid histidine; the dipeptide carnosine, which consists of linked histidine and beta-alanine; alpha-lipoic acid, a saturated fatty acid renowned for its potent and versatile antioxidant actions; and rutin, a flavonoid found in many plants, notably buckwheat, black tea, and apple skins.*
Having Babies Without Sex
Stem cell technologies … will take a woman’s skin cells; turn them into so-called “induced pluripotent stem cells” (cells very similar to the famous embryonic stem cells but made from living people); turn those cells into eggs, and mature the eggs in the lab. This would not only greatly reduce the cost, discomfort and risk of IVF, but would allow each woman reliably to produce hundreds of eggs (or more). It already has worked in mice and the first steps have been taken with humans. __ http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/apr/01/sex-babies-humans-parents-technology-science-fiction-pgd
The article above describes the creation of artificial eggs. Scientists at Nanjing Medical Center are creating artificial sperm from embryonic stem cells.
When you combine artificial eggs with artificial sperm, and gestate them inside an artificial womb, will you create artificial humans? Not necessarily. It depends upon how deeply the genetic material is edited by tools such as CRISPR. Regardless, it is obvious that using such technology, entire colonies of humans could be transplanted to habitats on alien worlds without transporting a single living human being on the long journey.
The Gremlin Swarm: The Overlords Need Never Set Foot on Earth
Keeping unruly humans in their place has always been a risky business. But if you could maintain control on the ground using automated technologies permanently based in the skies, there would be no need to get one’s boots dirty:
DARPA has awarded Phase 1 contracts for its Gremlins drone swarm program, which seeks to develop innovative technologies and systems enabling aircraft to launch volleys of low-cost, reusable unmanned air systems (UASs) and safely and reliably retrieve them in mid-air. Such systems, or “gremlins,” would be deployed with a mixture of mission payloads capable of generating a variety of effects in a distributed and coordinated manner, providing U.S. forces with improved operational flexibility at a lower cost than is possible with conventional, monolithic platforms.
… The program envisions launching groups of UASs from existing large aircraft such as bombers or transport aircraft—as well as from fighters and other small, fixed-wing platforms—while those planes are out of range of adversary defenses. When the gremlins complete their mission, a C-130 transport aircraft would retrieve them in the air and carry them home, where [maintenance _ ed.] crews would prepare them for their next use within 24 hours.
You would need to use lighter than air craft and hybrid craft, of course, to avoid the need for frequent in-flight refueling just to stay aloft. The ability to travel to and from Earth orbit using high atmospheric floating platforms would make true global control that much easier.
Quarantining the planetary surface will only get easier as the various systems are automated and become interlocking.
3D Printing on an Exponential Path
3D printers can print metals, organic materials like wood and bamboo, and even the building blocks of bones and human tissues. The US Food and Drug Administration approved the first 3D-printed drug last year, and research is ongoing into the construction of machines that would allow us to print out any drug, in any amount. whenever it’s needed.
3D printing is now where computer technology was in the mid-1970s. Poised for the great leap.
MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) has created a method for 3D printing hydraulically-powered robot parts that require no assembly.
That’s right — we can now 3D print entire robots. Perhaps more troubling is that one day, robots will be able to print robots. It’s the beginning of the end.
… our symbiotic relationship with 3D printing hardware may eventually doom us. “Accelerating the process depends less on the particulars of our technique, and more on the engineering and resolution of the printers themselves,” says Rus. “Printing ultimately takes as long as the printer takes, so as printers improve, so will the manufacturing capabilities.”
CRISPR Opens All Things Biological to Revolutionary Transformation
You may have thought that CRISPR was only good for creating superbabies, and the new master race. Not so.
In a paper published just last week, researchers at Temple University used it to snip out the most widespread type of HIV from human immune cells. Meanwhile, labs around the world are employing CRISPR to identify potential cancer therapies, develop treatments for cystic fibrosis, create malaria-blocking mosquitos, produce swole dogs, make miniature pet pigs, and even bring extinct species back from the dead.
Still, the Chinese are developing CRISPR for use in editing human embryonic genomes. The race appears to be on, between future superbabies, and future intelligent machines.
New Expandable Space Habitats for Orbit and Planetary Surfaces
Why not put up a dozen space stations orbiting the Earth? Humans could use them to set up colonies on the moon or Mars. What’s to stop an eccentric billionaire from starting a space hotel?… “Bigelow habitats are lighter and take up substantially less rocket fairing space, and are far more affordable than traditional, rigid modules,” according to Bigelow press release. And for anyone worried about the safety of something that expands like a balloon in an environment that is fairly hostile to life, the company says its habitats provide “enhanced protection against radiation and physical debris” compared to metallic structures. ___ Scheduled for Launch in Early April 2016
The first wave of human space colonists may well be living in pre-fab inflatable habitats built on Earth for launching into space. But it won’t be long before future space habitats are 3D printed in place, using available materials.
After TSHTF and TEOTWAWKI, What’s for Dinner?
“Food fatigue is a real thing,” Bedford explains. If all that’s in the pantry is rice and beans, the monotony of the diet would eventually make anyone lose their desire to eat.
To get a varied diet, Bedford advocates a three-layer approach to stocking the pantry. The first layer takes place at the grocery store — specifically in the canned food aisles. “The reason canned food is so important is that it’s shelf stable,” Bedford says. That said, don’t just purchase whatever is on sale. “Focus on things you’ll eat and your family members will eat,” she adds. And don’t forget the spices: Adding new flavors to the same base ingredients is an easy way to combat food fatigue while sticking to a few pantry staples.
Next are the bulk foods which Bedford believes are where most of a prepper’s time and money should be spent. Opening a can of ravioli might get you a meal, but there’s not much in the way of choice. With freeze-dried meat, shrimp, yogurt, and cheese (almost every food seems to have been freeze-dried) and a healthy stockpile of various pastas, dried beans, and grain, “you can make hundreds of recipes,” according to Bedford. For people who don’t feel up to DIY recipe development, there are a number of resources to turn to. Many preppers blog and post individual recipes and tips on their websites. Prepping is also a (small) cookbook genre with titles like The Survivalist Cookbook or The Prepper’s Cookbook that speak directly to their intended audience. Plenty of other cookbooks focus on things like canned soup, jerky, or campfire recipes.
Finally, a good prepper wants to invest in some ready-to-eat meals. They’re not all that different from the field rations given to soldiers and, as a result, are not something the average person wants to survive on entirely. “You’ll get tired of them pretty quickly,” Bedford says. She recommends that the RTE meals comprise no more than 20 percent of total food supplies.
Cheap, abundant fresh water from seawater is on the way . . . In fact, these filters can make fresh water out of human urine, if you are forced to take that route . . . A more palatable approach would be for every household to slap such a filter in-line on taps and water mains.
Can the People of Europe and the Anglosphere Stand Up to Both Their Governments and the Enemies In Their Midst?
It depends upon how well they take in the lessons of Lebanon, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Venezuela, and other formerly prosperous nations that experienced demographic decline and ongoing collapse.
Don’t Leave Home Without Your Lethal Weapons
The confidence of knowing that you are always armed — with a full range of designed and improvised weapons — should not make you over-confident. Instead, it should make you more aware of the dynamics of your surroundings, so that you can make the best use of your innate lethality, if necessary.
Questions to help select self-defence weapons:
a) is the use of the item appropriate?
b) will it work on that particular individual?
c) will it work fast enough to keep him from killing you? __ source
Start thinking these things through with the different people you see in passing, as you go about your daily business. Take is as a mental exercise to imagine how you might disable various persons you see, should they pose a credible threat.
Cat and Mouse Game Between Frenemies Russia and China Continues
China progressively moves onto Siberian territory that formerly belonged to Russia:
China is set to move a number of its enterprises to the Russian Far East, Russia’s Ministry for the Development of the Far East said in a statement on Tuesday.
The possibility of relocating certain Chinese enterprises was discussed during the recent visit of the ministry’s head Alexandr Galushka to Beijing, according to the statement published Tuesday.
China proposed relocating enterprises in 12 key sectors of economy, including metallurgy, power engineering, machinery, shipbuilding, chemical industry, textile industry, cement industry, telecommunications and agriculture.
The enterprises will be transferred in compliance with Russian environmental regulations, the statement said. __ The Moscow Times
Russia is accustomed to accepting foreign investment, then co-opting and nationalising it, kicking the foreigners out. That will not be so easy to do now that Putin has pawned so much of Russia’s future to the dragon. As for “Russian environmental regulations,” see official schedule of bribes.
The World Bank says an estimated 3.1 million Russians have slipped below the poverty line as the country’s economy struggles with low global oil prices and international sanctions.
The assessment, made in a report released on April 6, said gross domestic product shrank 3.7 percent last year, and predicted it will contract another 1.1 percent this year.
Russia’s 2016 decline is likely to be closer to that of 2015, than to the World Bank prediction.
The Future is Unpredictable, and Everything You Think You Know, Just Ain’t So
The better your advanced planning, the less need for desperate improvisation. Be Dangerous, but behave in a mild and respectful way to those you meet — until it is clear that they would rather have a conversation with your Dangerous side.