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Hurricane, cyclone, typhoon, tornado – what’s the difference?

We take a look at  hurricanes, cyclones, typhoons and tornadoes.

March 13, 2019

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Hurricane Irma from space.

What is the difference between a hurricane, a cyclone, and a typhoon?

The only difference between a hurricane, a cyclone, and a typhoon is the location where the storm occurs.

Hurricanes, cyclones, and typhoons are all the same weather phenomenon; we just use different names for these storms in different places. In the Atlantic and Northeast Pacific, the term “hurricane” is used. The same type of disturbance in the Northwest Pacific is called a “typhoon” and “cyclones” occur in the South Pacific and Indian Ocean.


Science says being a 'crazy cat lady' is actually good for you

Cats have significant, positive impact on mental health, study says

May 17, 2019
Elizabeth Gulino
Editorial Fellow

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Tell the "crazy cat lady" archetype to step aside — there's some new research in town, and it says that owning cats actually makes you healthier and definitely not a crazy cat lady. According to Psychological Medicine, there's absolutely no link to owning cats and psychosis later in life, and there's even more research proving that cats are actually beneficial to several parts of our health. In fact, living with a cute kitten — or two or three or four — can actually reduce the risk for cardiovascular diseases.


It's not just soda: Drinking too much fruit juice (or any sugary drink) linked to premature death risk

By Susan Scutti, CNN
May 17, 2019

(CNN)Many sugar-sweetened beverages have little to no nutritional value and lots of calories, and their harmful health effects have been well-documented. Now, a study links drinking too many sugary beverages -- and even 100% natural fruit juices -- to an increased risk of early death.

Specifically, drinking an excessive amount of fruit juice could lead to an increased risk of premature death ranging from 9% to 42%, according to the study, published Friday in the journal JAMA Network Open.

Overall, the sugars found in orange juice, although naturally occurring, are pretty similar to the sugars added to soda and other sweetened beverages, the study suggests.

"Sugary beverages, whether soft drinks or fruit juices, should be limited," Jean A. Welsh, a co-author of the study and an assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Emory University in Atlanta, wrote in an email.

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A 20-ounce bottle of Coca-Cola Classic contains 65 grams of sugar, which is the same amount of sugar found in five Little Debbie Swiss Rolls.

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A 20-ounce bottle of Pepsi contains 69 grams of sugar. Each Little Debbie Swiss Roll contains an estimated 13 grams of sugar.

General Topic / ‘To strive, to seek, to find and not to yield!’
« on: May 16, 2019, 01:09:49 PM »

‘To strive, to seek, to find and not to yield!’

By: Ed Garcia
Philippine Daily Inquirer
May 16, 2019

I still vividly remember the first truncheons that were swung at students at the foot of the Old Congress in Manila during the First Quarter Storm (FQS) in 1970. The annual address dubbed the “State of the Nation” had just been intoned by then President-turned-dictator Ferdinand Marcos, while the real state of the nation with all its unrest, suppressed brutally, was unraveling in the streets.

“Conscientization,” a word coined by the author of the “Pedagogy of the Oppressed,” the Brazilian Paolo Freire, meaning “growing social awareness,” was hastened by the blows of truncheons or the suffocation caused by tear gas or the sudden gust of water cannons thrown at protesters; “mulat” we said then, the equivalent of the word “woke” that you often use now.


Debunking the health benefits of apple cider vinegar

August 24, 2018

Written By
Edwin McDonald IV, MD

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The Internet would have you believe apple cider vinegar is the new pixie dust due to its health benefits. It’s tempting to believe the Internet claims about apple cider vinegar (ACV). They sound so fantastic — even doctors can fall victim to them.

ACV is not pixie dust, but it’s also not snake oil. For those who want to try ACV, it does have some proven health benefits. Here are a few of those health benefits — and limitations — straight, no chaser.


[ANALYSIS] 2019 elections: The jolt we all need

Perhaps we need to realize that we are no longer in the realm of politics as usual and take seriously the task of forging an effective mass political movement to head off the Final Solution

Walden Bello
May 07, 2019

If the polls are any indication, the May 13 elections will be a continuation of the electoral trend that brought Rodrigo Duterte to power in 2016.

The Hugpong ng Pagbabago candidates are not running for their stand on the issues, on character, on their record of public service.

Sara Duterte, the President’s daughter, made it very clear that it’s the administration slate’s loyalty to her father that counts when she said a candidate’s honesty should not be a factor in these elections.


Health Expert: Neck, back pains can be symptoms of spinal arthritis

May 7, 2019267
By Ma. Teresa Montemayor/Philippine News Agency

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Philippine Rheumatology Association Patient Advocacy Committee member Geraldine Zamora (center) says Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), a type of arthritis that attacks the spine, has no cure but AS sufferers can still experience quality of life through early diagnosis and pain management. (Photo by Ma. Teresa Montemayor)

MANILA — A health expert on Tuesday urged the public not to neglect severe and prolonged neck and back pains as they can be symptoms of Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), a type of arthritis that attacks the spine.

“All of us will develop some sort of back pain. For example, if you’re working in a sedentary position in the office, you are in an ergonomically challenged position or you carry heavy objects like construction or mechanical workers. But, there’s a type of back pain that you need to take seriously, the one that is accompanied with fever and weight loss, and other red flags of AS,” Philippine Rheumatology Association (PRA) board member, Dr. Evan Vista, said in a press briefing during World Ankylosing Spondylitis Day in Quezon City.



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(NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/CI Lab)

Astronomers Just Found The Ancient Cosmic Event That Gave Earth Gold And Platinum


A violent collision between two neutron stars 4.6 billion years ago showered the as-yet-unformed Solar System with heavy elements, new research has found.

As much as 0.3 percent of Earth's gold, platinum and uranium (along with other heavy elements) could have been forged in the fire of a merger 1,000 light-years away, when the Solar System was little more than a cloud of gas and dust.

Philippine Government / Recidivist lawmakers defeated by budget veto
« on: April 30, 2019, 10:39:46 PM »


Recidivist lawmakers defeated by budget veto

Jarius Bondoc
The Philippine Star
April 22, 2019

Lawmakers couldn’t help themselves. Congressional pork barrels had been outlawed five years ago. Yet in this 2019 national budget they again granted themselves slabs of people’s money. It’s as if the Supreme Court never voted 14-0 to end their crookedness. As if none of them was indicted thereafter for plunder, corruption, or malversation. Incorrigibly they lapsed back into crime. They even expanded their pork barrels four times over. The President had to stop them in their tracks.

Rodrigo Duterte’s veto of the P95.3-billion congressional pork is momentous. Weeks earlier he had told lawmakers he’d scratch out any illegal item in the budget bill. Anti-pork senator Panfilo Lacson had exposed congressmen’s illegal fund insertions for their districts. Senate President Vicente Sotto III had refused to certify the House of Reps’ printed bill due to illegal alterations of the ratified details. Those were fair warnings to Congress leaders that they’d been caught. The story already was in the papers. They were being given a chance to correct themselves, to undo the exposed illegalities, to resurrect themselves for posterity. They did not. They preferred damnation.

Philippine Daily News / Are you voting for Barabbas?
« on: April 30, 2019, 09:39:36 PM »


Are you voting for Barabbas?

By: John Nery
Philippine Daily Inquirer
April 30, 2019

Last week, on the Monday a strong earthquake struck off the coast of Zambales and wrought substantial damage in Pampanga, two speeches also made an impact. They were addressed to the participants at the 2nd Conference on Democracy and Disinformation, but their real audience was an occasional resident in the Palace by the Pasig.

The former ombudsman of the Philippines, retired Supreme Court justice Conchita Carpio Morales, gave a rousing address on “democratic decay in the Philippines.” She linked the erosion of democratic institutions to the new information disorder in the starkest terms possible to a lifelong anticorruption crusader.

“Disinformation and misinformation are forms of corruption. It is not difficult to explain why narratives on human rights and corruption are among the favorite topics for ‘fake’ news and hate speech by the enemies of democracy,” Morales said.

World Daily News / How Emperor Akihito's 'love match' won over Japan
« on: April 30, 2019, 12:15:30 PM »

How Emperor Akihito's 'love match' won over Japan

30th April 2019

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Written by Stephy Chung, CNN and Yoko Wakatsuki, CNN.
Tokyo, Japan

In the late 1950s, royal wedding fever swept Japan. Then-Crown Prince Akihito had fallen for literature graduate Michiko Shoda, whom he met on a tennis court in 1957 in a fateful encounter that came to be known as the "love match."

National fascination with the prince's wedding was due, in part, to Michiko's status as a commoner -- a move that broke with over 2,000 years of tradition. But the growth of mass media and the emergence of live television also helped to cement the pair's enormous popularity, forever changing the way that the royal family shaped its public image.

The nation was enthralled by the future princess, and photos of her appeared everywhere. Media outlets, like the women's weekly magazine Josei Jishin, pored over Michiko in glossy, picture-led features that dissected her style choices, among much else.

Philippine Government / The Last Good Senator
« on: April 25, 2019, 06:49:48 PM »

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Art by Gica Tam


The Last Good Senator: Rene Saguisag
While others seek the limelight and more time in public office, the former presidential spokesman promised to seek only one term in the Senate—and stuck to the promise. One journalist recalls how, in that short stint as a lawmaker, Saguisag was a workhorse, and the epitome of moral rectitude.

Philip M. Lustre Jr. | Apr 21 2019

Three weeks before we head to the polls to vote for our senatorial bets, do we really know what we want out of the personalities we will elect? What does it really mean to earn a seat in our senate halls? In this series of ANCX essays, some of our distinguished journalists and opinion makers reflect on the careers of past and present senators whose careers have made the most impact, and created a significant difference.


PCIJ on ‘Oust-Duterte plot’:
Wrong report, on many counts

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Duterte threatens 'suicide mission' if Beijing oversteps in South China Sea

By Ben Westcott and Brad Lendon, CNN
April 5, 2019

Hong Kong (CNN)- Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has threatened to send his troops on a "suicide mission" if Beijing doesn't "lay off" a Manila-occupied island in the South China Sea.

Duterte's speech at a rally in the city of Puerto Princesa in Palawan came days after the Philippine government claimed as many as 275 Chinese boats and ships had been spotted in recent months around Manila's Thitu Island in the Spratly Island chain.

"Let us be friends, but do not touch Pagasa Island and the rest," Duterte said, according to CNN Philippines, using the Philippine word Pagasa for Thitu.

"If you make moves there, that's a different story. I will tell my soldiers, 'Prepare for suicide mission'."

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Facts and Trivia / The Takin of Bhutan
« on: April 01, 2019, 12:47:43 PM »

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Takin is the largest goat antelope and is the national animal of Bhutan, found in the forested valleys of eastern Himalayas of India and Bhutan. Takin are found in small family groups and considered Vulnerable due to overhunting and the destruction of their natural habitat.


The adorable blind dog with his own seeing-eye puppy


Alice Webb-Liddall

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They're best pals. Photo credit: Instagram/Charlieandmav.

An adorable blind dog now has a seeing-eye pup of his own after losing both his eyes to glaucoma.

Charlie is an 11-year-old golden retriever who has become a social media sensation with his new friend, four-month-old pup, Maverick.

The two dogs are from North Carolina, and have amassed 92,700 followers on their shared Instagram page.

Inspiration & Hope / Return of the cat man of Aleppo
« on: March 16, 2019, 01:02:31 PM »

Return of the cat man of Aleppo

7 March 2019

The cat man of Aleppo, Mohammad Aljaleel, touched the hearts of millions when his sanctuary featured in a BBC video in 2016 (above). He had to leave the city when it fell to Syrian government forces, but he's now back - in an area nearby - and helping children as well as animals, reports Diana Darke.

Just weeks after the video was filmed, Mohammad Aljaleel (known to everyone as Alaa) watched helplessly as his cat sanctuary was first bombed, then chlorine-gassed, during the intense final stages of the siege of Aleppo.

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The evacuation of east Aleppo in December 2016

Most of his 180 cats were lost or killed. Like thousands of other civilians he was trapped in the eastern half of the city under continuous bombardment from Russian and Syrian fighter jets.

As the siege tightened, he was forced from one Aleppo district to another, witnessing unimaginable scenes of devastation. Yet throughout, he continued to look after the few surviving cats and to rescue people injured in the bombing, driving them to underground hospitals.

Tira-Pasagad | Saksak-Sinagol / 8 of History's Greatest Cat Ladies
« on: March 14, 2019, 01:12:39 PM »

8 of History's Greatest Cat Ladies


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by Kalli Damschen

When most people think of the stereotypical cat lover, they may picture someone resembling the character from The Simpsons known simply as the Crazy Cat Lady—an insane, grizzled old woman who speaks in gibberish and throws cats at innocent passersby. And although the stereotype of the crazy cat lady is far from flattering, several of history’s most successful women were devoted to their furry friends. Here are eight of history’s greatest cat ladies.

Health and Food / Fifteen natural ways to lower your blood pressure
« on: March 09, 2019, 12:24:34 PM »

Fifteen natural ways to lower your blood pressure

Kerri-Ann Jennings, MS, RD   

High blood pressure is a dangerous condition that can damage your heart. It affects one in three people in the US and 1 billion people worldwide.

If left uncontrolled, it raises your risk of heart disease and stroke.

Fifteen remedies

But there's good news. There are a number of things you can do to lower your blood pressure naturally, even without medication.

Here are 15 natural ways to combat high blood pressure.

Philippine Government / Marcos as Paul Manafort client
« on: March 09, 2019, 01:41:44 AM »

Sourced from "Paul Manafort, American Hustler", The Atlantic March 2019 issue:

[...]The firm’s international business accelerated when the Philippines became a client, in 1985. President Ferdinand Marcos desperately needed a patina of legitimacy: The 1983 assassination of the chief opposition leader, Benigno Aquino Jr., had imperiled U.S. congressional support for his regime. Marcos hired Manafort to lift his image; his wife, Imelda, personally delivered an initial payment of $60,000 to the firm while on a trip to the States. When Marcos called a snap election to prove his democratic bona fides in 1986, Manafort told Time, “What we’ve tried to do is make it more of a Chicago-style election and not Mexico’s.” The quip was honest, if unintentionally so. In the American political lexicon, Chicago-style elections were generally synonymous with mass voter fraud. The late pollster Warren Mitofsky traveled to the Philippines with CBS News to set up and conduct an exit poll for the election. When he returned, he told the political scientist Sam Popkin the story of how a representative of Manafort’s firm had asked him, “What sort of margin might make a Marcos victory legitimate?” The implication was clear, Popkin told me: “How do we rig this thing and still satisfy the Americans?”

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