Getting Up To Speed with Oursociety911 (11/15/18)

Scientists have spotted a frozen planet three times the size of Earth that orbits Barnard’s star, just six light years away. Barnard’s star, the solitary star that is closest to our sun, has long been of interest to astronomers, who thought the star was a top contender for finding nearby Earth-like planets. The newly-discovered super-Earth is the second-closest known exoplanet; a closer one was found in 2016 orbiting the Proxima Centauri stars. Because Barnard’s star radiates far less warmth than our sun, the planet, known as Barnard’s star b, is a hostile frozen environment that likely has no liquid water.

Getting Up To Speed with Oursociety911 (11/14/18)

A federal judge has barred Georgia election officials from certifying the state’s tight gubernatorial election before Friday, and ordered them to review all provisional ballots cast in the midterm elections first. Before the ruling late Monday, officials had planned to certify the result on Wednesday. Another judge ruled Tuesday that officials must count absentee ballots rejected over problems with dates of birth. Republican Brian Kemp, who as Georgia’s secretary of state had the duty of overseeing the election, leads Democrat Stacey Abrams by nearly 59,000 votes. If he keeps the lead he will have just enough to win outright, but if the race narrows enough to pull his total below 50 percent he will be forced into a runoff election against Abrams.

Getting Up To Speed with Oursociety911 (11/13/18)

The death toll from the Camp Fire in Northern California’s Butte County rose to 42 on Monday, making it the deadliest fire in the state’s history. The fire was still just 30 percent contained after burning 117,000 acres and destroying 7,177 homes and businesses, many in the devastated town of Paradise, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection or Cal Fire. Two more fires threatened communities in Southern California. One of the blazes, the Woolsey Fire, grew to 93,662 acres on Monday in Los Angeles and Ventura counties. It has killed two people and destroyed 435 homes and other structures in the celebrity enclaves of Malibu, West Lake Village, and Calabasas.

Getting Up To Speed with Oursociety911 (11/08/18)

President Trump held a post-election media conference on Wednesday, alternating between offering to cooperate with Democrats who won the House and threatening to assume a “war-like posture” if the Democrats use their House majority’s subpoena power to investigate him. Trump said “we are all better off” now that Democrats have seized control of the House from Republicans, “because the Democrats will come to us with a plan for infrastructure, a plan for health care, a plan for whatever they’re looking at, and we’ll negotiate.” Trump said that if Democrats instead choose to focus on looking into possible corruption in his administration, “They can play that game, but we can play it better, because we have a thing called the United States Senate.”