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D. Travis North
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+Bro Last Oh I agree, our foreign policy is awful.  We're arrogant in the eyes of foreign nations and we tend to stick our nose in business where it doesn't belong.  And that hurts us more than helps us.  The last thing we need is a fly-off-the-handle President.  Trump would be that President, and it would only lead to more countries and groups disliking us.

It's very difficult to do from our perspective, but try for a moment to put yourself into the shoes of these groups like Al Quaeda.  We created them...maybe not directly, but we stepped on their toes and got into their personal space and they took offense to that.  In their eyes, they would be doing the whole world a favor if they could get rid of the American regime.  In their eyes, we're the largest and most organized terrorist society on the planet.  Their view is perhaps a touch irrational, but we haven't done a damn thing to correct that misconception.  It certainly didn't help when we acted in the middle east without the blessing and support of the United Nations.  We acted alone and our reputation has suffered world wide.

So our ideal foreign policy should include true energy independence.  If we focus more on renewable resources like solar and wind and if we push hydrogen and electric cars, we decrease our dependancies on countries like Saudi Arabia.  We can get out of the Middle East.  Our foreign policy should include outreach instead of military tactics.  And when it comes to flexing our military muscles, we should have the blessing of the UN or at least we should never act alone.  We should also be working to expand our own R&D and incentivize keeping it all within our boarders.  The more services and exports we can offer to foreign nations, the better we'll be in the eyes of foreign nations.  Just imagine if WE were the leaders in green technology or if WE were the guys that beat Cancer once and for all?
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I'm just going to leave this here...
Arctic sea ice has melted so much, National Geographic had to redraw its atlas.
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+fistfullof genderlessgerbils While pure water freezes at 0 degrees C (32 F), salt water freezes at -1.9 degrees C (28.4 F).  But salt water doesn't freeze consistently either...it tends to have large areas of mostly pure water and then it traps veins of briny saltier water that may not freeze until temperatures as low as -21.1 C.  

So that is an important factor and I understand that the lower temperatures of the ocean water observed in the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans are actually caused by the polar ice caps melting.  I'll come back to this point.

Now the polar ice is melting mostly because of the warmer surface temperature...it is predominately the ice above sea level that is melting. Sea water is basically a suspension of salt (and other particles) in water.  But when water freezes, it has a crystalline structure that tends to push out impurities.  So sea ice is large chunks of fresh water with veins of brine and "dirty" ice that freezes last at a much lower temperature.  And that dirty ice may not even be entirely frozen.  Water's unique property of being less dense in frozen form than it is in liquid form factors in here, because the more pure ice floats to the surface while the dirty ice, being more dense, tends to be at the bottom under water unless insulated by clean ice.  Surface temperature rises, fresh water is melting off the surface and the insulation for the really cold dirty water dissipates and it also sloughs off into the sea.

So, temperature of the ocean:  It has been observed in both the Pacific and the Atlantic Oceans that the water temperature has lowered.  The cause is the polar ice melting.  The oceans collectively have a big wobbly loop cycling through all of the oceans pulling colder water from the poles, cycling through the warmer Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans and pulling that warmer water back to the poles.  Or at least that's what it's supposed to do.  Instead, it's pulling COLDER water from the poles, depositing it in the Atlantic and Pacific.  To make matters worse...that current is supposed to result in the water warming in the tropics before its being sent back to the poles.  But that water is starting colder, doesn't have enough of a chance to warm up and it's going back to the poles colder than it did decades ago.  

Now here's where things get fuzzy.

Climatologists have hypothesized that the ocean temperature has an impact on our weather.  With a lower water temperature and a higher surface temperature, this can create some turbulent high and low pressure areas, particularly near the coastlines.  The weather will grow more erratic and more dramatic, eroding the coast and impacting micro-climates up and down the seaboard.  This is a much larger concern than ocean water levels rising.  But I want to reiterate:  It is a hypothesis.  The data has not yet been conclusive.  Scientists continue to collect data all over the globe and analyze as best as they can.  There is fairly clear indication that something is happening...but the pieces haven't been put together completely.  It's kinda like playing connect-the-dots.  When you're going from dot to dot, you probably don't have to complete the sketch before you have figured out what it is.  We may not need all of that data before we realize that we have a problem.  

Side note, because this came up in a debate earlier in the month:  Weather is the daily occurrences on a regional scale and it can be observed by walking outside.  Climate is the trend on an overall global scale of the collective weather and it cannot be observed without collecting data across several years.  There is a significant difference.  Neil Degrass Tyson explained it pretty well using the model of a guy walking his dog on a leash along the beach.  The dog would represent weather and he may wander wherever he wants within the confines of the leash (and he will, if you know dogs).  But the Climate is the man at the other end of the leash and he has a more linear path.  
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CLERA is a Transparent Camera That Actually Works
Photographer Anton Orlov has created what he believes is the world's first camera that's both completely transparent and fully functional. It's called CLER
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You know that voter ID Law in Texas? The one that a Texas legislature said wasn't meant to disenfranchise minorities, but more geared toward democrats?

Well, a court shot it down.
One day before the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act a federal appeals court wielded that law to strike down a Texas voter suppression law.
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I'm very much enjoying this meme.  Dihydrogen Monoxide is very serious stuff.
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I'd like to see a new Bill from someone in congress:  The Bill Naming Bill.   It's simple.  If passed and ratified, it would make it a requirement that Bills be named representative of their actual intent.  Even the Short Title must adhere to this requirement.  It would therefore make it illegal for inappropriately named bills or intentionally vauge bill names.  

Some Examples:
- "Citizens United" is inappropriate unless it was intended to permit citizens to hold hands.  Perhaps it should have been named "Corporate Right to Purchase Politicians (CRPP, pronounced "Creep")
- "Right to Work" bills, as they currently exist, would more appropriately be labeled "Right to Fire" or "Screw the Unions"
- The new "Protect Life" act, which would give hospitals the right to let the mother die in labor and to take any measures necessary to deliver the baby (regardless of the baby's chances of life) would be aptly named "Orphan Creation Bill" or "Kill Mama Bill".

Honorable mention to the very appropriately named to the bill being passed by Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Ky):  Keep Our Campaigns Honest Act (aka: the KOCH Act).
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Pretty twisted and scary stuff.  Can't believe any of these laws actually got passed, let alone in multiple states (for some of them, anyhow)
 
Republican-controlled states are sharpening their fight against the poor, and then paralyzing their attempts to fight back.
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The Evolution of Storage! Its crazy to think that it's only getting denser! What'll the next 10 years bring!?

(Found at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/7979419@N02/4131812966/sizes/l/)
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Work
Occupation
Landscape Architect & Photographer
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  • D. Travis North Photography
    Photographer, 2010 - present
  • Shutter Photo Magazine
    Editor, 2008 - present
  • Bohler Engineering
    Landscape Architect, Photographer, 2001 - present
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Photographer, Landscape Architect, Geek
Introduction

As a Landscape Architect, I create welcoming and habitable spaces. As a Photographer, I strive to exhibit the beauties of spaces, even if they are traditionally thought of as "ugly". In either case, it is my goal to identify, define and showcase the elements that humans find appealing.

I am the founder and editor of Shutter Photo Magazine which has been a source of inspiration and learning for hobbyist photographers for over three years.  Many of my personal photographic works are available for purchase or for licensing - more information can be found at the official D. Travis North Photography website.

Bragging rights
I never climbed Mt. Everest.
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D. Travis North's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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