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EPA chief Pruitt appeals to ?civility? but fails to quell environmentalists? concerns

EPA chief Pruitt appeals to ?civility? but fails to quell environmentalists? concernsEnvironmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt?s first speech to employees of the EPA at midday on Tuesday did little to assuage the concerns of environmentalists over his ties to the fossil fuel industry. At the EPA?s headquarters in Washington, D.C., Pruitt called for civility and listening in his highly anticipated, tense inaugural address to the staff of an agency that he sued more than a dozen times as Oklahoma attorney general. President Trump?s decision to nominate Pruitt, who has made it clear he has no confidence in mainstream climate science, to lead the EPA immediately incited a backlash†from liberals and environmentalists.



Immigration advocates denounce DHS plan to implement Trump executive orders

Immigration advocates denounce DHS plan to implement Trump executive ordersImmigration policy experts lashed out Tuesday at the Department of Homeland Security?s plan to implement President Trump?s executive orders on immigration. ?In my many years of practicing immigration law, I have not seen a mass deportation blueprint like this one,? Marielena Hincapiť, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, a Los Angeles-based nonprofit that advocates for the rights of low-income immigrant families, said in a conference call with reporters. In two memos issued Tuesday, DHS Secretary John Kelly laid out sweeping new guidance for officers tasked with carrying out the president?s immigration policies.



What killed Kim Jong Nam, who did it and why still not known

What killed Kim Jong Nam, who did it and why still not knownSEOUL, South Korea (AP) ? More than a week has passed since the North Korean leader's estranged half brother died in Malaysia, but what killed him, who instigated it and why are still unknown. Malaysian authorities have identified several suspects in the death of Kim Jong Nam, but many questions remain.



Dead migrants wash up on Libyan beach from boat with no engine

Dead migrants wash up on Libyan beach from boat with no engineBy Aidan Lewis TUNIS (Reuters) - The bodies of at least 74 migrants have been found washed up on the shore in western Libya after the engine of their inflatable boat was stolen, coastguard and aid officials said on Tuesday. Red Crescent spokesman Mohamed al-Misrati said the corpses had been recovered on Monday near the city of Zawiya and the migrants appeared to have died during the past two days. The Zawiya coastguard posted a video that showed the migrants' boat, with no engine, as the first bodies were recovered.



Le Pen aide charged in 'fake jobs' scandal: judicial source

Le Pen aide charged in 'fake jobs' scandal: judicial sourceParis (AFP) - The personal assistant of French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen was charged Wednesday in a scandal over "fake jobs" at the European Parliament, a judicial source said.



France Is Training Eagles To Take Down Drones To Fight Terrorism

France Is Training Eagles To Take Down Drones To Fight TerrorismThe French Air Force is training golden eagles to take down enemy drones to help fight the war on terror.



Ex-Hong Kong leader jailed in fall from 'such a height'

Ex-Hong Kong leader jailed in fall from 'such a height'By Venus Wu HONG KONG (Reuters) - Former Hong Kong leader Donald Tsang was jailed for 20 months on Wednesday for misconduct in public office, making him the most senior city official to serve time behind bars in a ruling some said reaffirmed the financial hub's vaunted rule of law. The sentence brings an ignominious end to what had been a long and stellar career for Tsang before and after the 1997 handover to Chinese control, service that saw him knighted by the outgoing British colonial rulers. "Never in my judicial career have I seen a man falling from such a height," said High Court justice Andrew Chan in passing sentence.



An inside look at the differences between life at NASA and SpaceX

An inside look at the differences between life at NASA and SpaceX

When Elon Musk sets his sights on an industry, he does so with purpose and with the intention of completely turning said industry on its head. While most people are readily familiar with Musk's efforts at Tesla, the groundbreaking work being done by SpaceX, Musk's other company, has only recently started to attract attention from the mainstream.

To be sure, Elon Musk was bold for thinking that Tesla could revolutionize the auto industry. That said, Musk's plans to enter the aerospace industry with SpaceX and compete with and work alongside NASA wasn't just bold, it was downright crazy. And yet, both of Musk's ventures continue to amass greater success with each passing year.

Earlier this month, we stumbled across a thread on Quora asking if it's better for engineers to work at NASA or SpaceX. Of course, the question itself was a bit misleading because it's not as if one company is superior to the other. Without question, some of the smartest minds on the planet can be found at both. Still, there are a number of interesting differences between the work environment at NASA and SpaceX that are worth highlighting.

Tackling this issue, an engineer named Andre Lavoie -- who has spent significant time at both companies -- details a number of fascinating differences between life at NASA and SpaceX.

Not surprisingly, the fact that NASA is a government agency, as opposed to a private company like SpaceX, impacts the work environment in both positive and negative ways. While Lavoie points out that the work-life balance at NASA is a positive, the work there can sometimes be encumbered by "an institutional aversion to risk" and predictably slow-moving bureaucracy.

Projects can start with much fanfare and then be cancelled. Repeatedly. Maybe this is because there are many worthy things that should be studied but funds are always limited. It can be rewarding because you have more opportunity to really dig in and understand things and learn. Your job is very secure, even when budgets get cut or you yourself don't succeed.

As for life at SpaceX, the work environment there, not surprisingly sounds awfully similar to a forward-thinking start-up, albeit on steroids.

In contrast, Space X is a product company. It designs, builds, sells and launches rockets. Your job there is to make that happen no matter what. Nobody gives up. Failure is acceptable, to a point. Risk taking is expected, but stupidity and recklessness is punished unceremoniously. You just get fired. There is no job security. Schedule is critical because as a privately funded company if it fails to succeed before the money runs out then it's game over. The sense of urgency is huge. At Space X you can have plenty of responsibility even if you have little experience. This is great if you are energetic, resourceful and work obsessively. If not you will probably fall behind and then your days will be numbered.

Lavoie's full answer, along with the full thread is well worth digesting in its entirety. You can check it out over here.



Meet the 22-year-old fighting Trump?s terror talk about Sweden from the country?s official Twitter feed

Meet the 22-year-old fighting Trump?s terror talk about Sweden from the country?s official Twitter feedBefore President†Trump?s reference on Saturday to a terror attack in Sweden, the biggest story in Stockholm was this one: a report about the so-called ?fake news? industry published by Dagens Nyheter, a Swedish newspaper. ?You look at what?s happening last night in Sweden,? the president said to his supporters at a campaign-style rally in Melbourne, Fla., on Saturday. ?Sweden, who would believe this?? Trump later explained he was watching a Fox News segment that featured a documentary filmmaker accusing the Swedish government of covering up an immigration-related crime wave there.



Texas to feral pigs: It's time for the 'hog apocalypse' to begin

Texas to feral pigs: It's time for the 'hog apocalypse' to beginTexas has a new plan for its 2.5 million feral hogs: total annihilation.† Sid Miller, the state's agriculture commissioner, just approved a pesticide ? called "Kaput Feral Hog Lure" ? for statewide use. "The 'hog apocalypse' may finally be on the horizon," Miller said in a statement on Tuesday. SEE ALSO: First human-pig chimeras created, sparking hopes for transplantable organs ? and debate "This solution is long overdue," he added. "Wild hogs have caused extensive damage to Texas lands and loss of income for many, many years." Texas's agriculture commission estimates that feral hogs cause $52 million in damage each year to agricultural businesses by tearing up crops and pastures, knocking down fences and ruining equipment. The so-called hog lure is derived from warfarin, a blood-thinning agent that's also used to kill rats and mice in homes and buildings. Animals don't die immediately from eating the odorless, tasteless chemical. That would be too kind. Instead, they keep eating it until the anti-clotting properties cause them to bleed to death internally. This week, Miller approved a rule change in the Texas Administrative Code that allows landowners and agricultural producers to use Kaput ? essentially warfarin-laced pellets ? to keep feral hogs off their property.† Not on my watch, hogs. Image: mark thompson/Getty Images Proponents of the hog toxicant, including the Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Service, say it's an effective tool because it's only strong enough to kill the swine, and not other wildlife populations or livestock. In January, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency registered Kaput's hog bait under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, a move that made the product available for general use. Still, environmentalists and hog hunters alike staunchly oppose using warfarin to stamp out Texas's feral pig problem. Pigs poop, after all, and other animals could ingest the warfarin along the way. Some Texans hunt the pigs for sport and food, and they're worried about eating poisoned swine. "For Texas to introduce a poison into the equation is a bad decision in our opinion and could likely contaminate humans who unknowingly process and eat feral hogs," the Texas Hog Hunters Association said in a Change.org petition to block the rule change. MIke and his big ole boar from yesterday. Lamar county Texas https://t.co/jQoS5JbtnQ pic.twitter.com/2SeAKs7zbh ? TX Hog Hunters Assn. (@texashoghunters) February 14, 2017 Louisiana might become the next state to use Kaput to quell its feral hog population, which worries state wildlife veterinarian Jim LaCour. He said local black bears and raccoons could easily lift the lid to the cages containing the warfarin-laced pellets. "We do have very serious concerns about non-target species," LaCour told the Times-Picayune in New Orleans.† "When the hogs eat, they're going to drop crumbs on the outside, where small rodents can get them and not only intoxicate themselves but also birds of prey that eat them. Since the poison will be on the landscape for weeks on end, the chances of these birds eating multiple affected animals is pretty good," he told the newspaper. The pesticide's manufacturer, Scimetrics Ltd. Corp., assures the pesticide is safe for humans and wildlife ? just not for feral pigs.†