Sweden tries to curb buy-and-throw-away culture through tax breaks

Every time I yank the string to start ‘er up, once, twice, three times … I just don’t know if the lawn is getting cut that day.  
“Part of that is making it more affordable and economically rational to stop the buying and throwing away, instead repairing your goods and using them for a longer time,” says Bolund. Now, I hire the Swedish version of Mike Daly at $80 an hour. Bolund says there are other ways to grow, and it’s not helping Sweden’s economy when somebody in Stockholm buys a new TV. But again, it’s all about the bottom line. If Swedes repair those items, they can take a 50-percent tax deduction off the cost of the labor. This idea — not just discarding stuff — it’s not exactly revolutionary. “Most of the electronic goods that we use are imported,” says Bolund. What do you do? 1, 2017, with a goal of decreasing waste in the world’s landfills, which are filling up at an alarming rate. On top of that, you’d also pay a 25-percent value added tax (VAT), or $5 more. He’s trying to push people in that direction through tax breaks; he’s spearheading a 50-percent tax cut for Swedes to repair items like   clothes, shoes and bicycles. He says not long ago there were tailors and cobblers in every neighborhood throughout the US, “and if you had a tear in a sock, somebody in your family darned the toe and the heel.”    
That sounds quaint today. “So you could be looking at $150 to $170 to repair that lawn mower,” says Daly. 1, that tax on repairs would be cut in half, and you’d save $2.50. If you wear your jeans a lot, eventually they’ll start to get a hole. Consider my ancient lawn mower. But let me throw some numbers at you. That’s largely the point of the new Swedish rule.  
But isn’t the point of a modern, healthy economy to constantly produce — to buy and sell stuff? The new rule takes effect on Jan. Everybody knows that. “It wouldn’t be worth it if it’s 10 years old and you paid $100 to begin with, unless maybe it had some sentimental value.”
It doesn’t. If I’m a Swede, I’m probably thinking twice about getting a new mower. Sweden’s consumer affairs minister Per Bolund says the new law will put more Swedes to work repairing stuff. Let’s say I have a $500 Craftsman deluxe mower. Sweden’s Minister of Financial Markets and Consumer Affairs Per Bolund says we need to change that mindset. “Repairing your goods is quite labor intense as compared to production. But the new Swedish law also applies to bigger-ticket household appliances: things like refrigerators and washing machines. “Fewer better, is better than more, cheaper,” says Ross. With the tax break, he’ll really only be costing me half that much. Sociologist Robert Ross   — remember, he thinks the tax break is too insignificant to bother fixing a pair of jeans   — does think   the new law can get Swedes thinking differently, moving in the right direction,   about what they buy:   more durable items worth keeping and repairing. After Jan. In high-tax Sweden, that can amount to substantial savings. You throw them away and buy a new pair, of course. He says the government’s role is to move the needle — so taking care of the planet becomes not just a moral decision, but an economically rational one too. Better for the environment, and perhaps better for jobs too. But let’s say you’re Swedish and a zipper breaks on your jeans, and it costs $20 to repair that. Ross thinks this tax cut is a well-intentioned idea, but “I don’t think that’s going to make the difference between somebody getting a pair of pants let out or a heel on a shoe.”
OK, fair enough.  
Mike Daly, who teaches yard tool repair classes in Indiana, says hourly rates to fix a lawn mower there are about $70 to $80 an hour. So we believe if consumption behavior is altered, this can lead to a boost in the employment and the labor market.”
Bolund adds that the tax cut for repairs is but one part of a larger strategy to promote sustainable consumption. “Clothing used to be repaired,” says Robert Ross, a sociologist and expert in the apparel industry at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Famed animator who played a big role in the creation of Disney’s ‘Bambi’ dies at 106

“Born in Canton, China in 1910, Wong and his father immigrated to America leaving behind his mother and sister, whom they never saw again,” according to an homage on Disney’s website. He took a position at Disney in 1938, an “inbetweener,” working on the visual continuity of animations and drawing hundreds of sketches of Mickey Mouse. Legendary animation artist Tyrus Wong, whose evocative sketches were used to create Disney’s groundbreaking “Bambi” cartoon, has died at the age of 106, the company said. As a young child, Wong’s father nurtured his love of art by having him practice calligraphy and painting. Wong later attended the Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles (now the Otis College of Art and Design) on a full scholarship. “Though Tyrus worked at The Walt Disney Studios only three years, between 1938 and 1941, his influence on the artistic composition of the animated feature Bambi cannot be overstated,” Disney said. After his stint at Disney, Wong worked for the next 26 years as a concept and story artist at Warner Brothers, until he retired in 1968. The sketches captured the attention of Walt Disney and became the template for the film’s visual style, according to the Disney website, which said Wong’s work influences films to this day, inspiring and leading contemporary animators. “Tyrus Wong had a gift for evoking incredible feeling in his art with simple, gestural composition,” said a statement released by the company, where he spent a brief few years before decamping to nearby rival Warner Brothers. When he heard that the studio was in preproduction on the feature film “Bambi,” he painted several pictures of a deer in a forest.

Listen to the audio sorcery used in the Broadway show ‘The Encounter’

It’s going down in pitch … And now for some reason, I don’t want to speak with a British accent. He was taken in by the Mayoruna, an indigenous tribe with whom he shared almost no language. Feel it?”
To make the binaural recordings that give the Amazon such substance in the theater, McBurney traveled to South America   with one of his collaborators. Gradually, however, McIntyre found that he could communicate with Mayoruna community members — first through gestures, and then, it seems, telepathically. PRI.org

The show, playing at New York’s Golden Theatre, charts the adventure of American photojournalist Loren McIntyre, who got lost in the Amazon in the late 1960s. Called a “binaural head,” the device, McBurney says, imitates how we, as human beings, hear. He wants the show’s tricks of sound and sight, its layering of aural perception and deception, to lead the audience toward a deeper line of inquiry. “Our perception of the world is based on the stories of that world,” he says. “This question of ‘how we feel connected,’ if you like, to other people, to families, to other families, to our nation, to other nations, is I think a very urgent question,” he says. And you’re hearing this voice, which is a kind of high British tenor.” But as McBurney speaks, something strange happens: “My voice is changing, if you like. When he speaks into it, his voice seems to float just behind your right shoulder. “And you know, people are listening to my voice, and that is a reality. I want to change into an American dialect.”
The voice of the Cambridge-born McBurney melts into an American drawl. Decades later, he shared his story with Petru Popescu, a Romanian author who wove it into the book, “Amazon Beaming,” which inspired McBurney’s play. “It’s not just this extraordinary story about this man, but it also questions that story, about the way that we have gone into these other worlds,” McBurney says of McIntyre’s adventure. “Appropriated things — the way white, Western colonization has wrought such destruction in the world. It also questions the way that we perceive time, the way that we think about the environment.”
Using low-tech sound effects and pitch-shifting microphones, McBurney deftly distorts the audience’s perception of fact and fiction. “And your right ear will begin to heat up. Listen to the full interview. He stripped away some of the wizardry in a visit with Studio 360’s Kurt Andersen (which you can listen to in full). “It’s not because I think it makes me more attractive to your listenership,” he continues. “It’s because this is the voice that I use for the principal character in this play, Loren McIntyre.”
As McBurney moves to another microphone, “You find out how much your brain has adjusted, because suddenly I sound like Mickey Mouse.” His voice snaps back into its crisp British accent. “And if I was to sum up the whole show, it is about our ability to listen to each other and to the world.”
This article is based on an interview that aired on PRI’s   Studio 360. There is no curtain-raising in “The Encounter.” The show simply begins — with the actor Simon McBurney telling a story, and each member of the audience listening through a set of headphones.Player utilitiesPopout
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downloadThis story is based on a radio interview. “The brain believes this fiction so totally, that, were I   to lean forward and breathe into this microphone, you would think that I was breathing in your right ear,” he says. “And I began to understand and appreciate what McIntyre was talking about, but also the way that these people see the world.”
He says that for the Mayoruna people, the sense of the forest “outside” is inextricable from their   inner reality or consciousness. “They took me on an extraordinary journey into the rainforest where I had never been,” he says. “And this seems to be more fictional than the other voice.”
Another microphone he has resembles a Styrofoam human head. You abuse or you exploit the outer world, and something happens within.”
For McBurney, the story stirs up questions about time, cultural appropriation   and the environment. “The Encounter” is playing at New York’s Golden Theatre through January 8. “The interesting thing for them [with] this sense of ‘inner life,’” he says, “is that it was inseparable from the world around them. While there, he sought out the descendants of the Mayoruna people McIntyre had met in the 1960s.

This Englishman’s search for truth was about the transformation of spirit, and of gender

He went through a series of 13 operations over several years to construct male genitalia. “Oftentimes, memoirs by trans folks are expected to kind of be framed by … transition,” Partridge says. “He thinks I’m a woman,” he wrote much later in life. “I was going through divinity school,” Lau says. The agent was quoted in   a British newspaper saying that, “Dr. Dillon tells the story in a memoir called, “Out of the Ordinary: A Life of Gender and Spiritual Transitions.” The book was published in November, more than a half-century after Dillon’s unexpected death in 1962. Then, he made up his mind to flee to India. Dillon took on the name of Lobzang Jivaka —   taken from the Buddha’s own personal physician. “That’s not the fulcrum of this book at all. Partridge, who is also also a trans man, says this is one thing that fascinated him about Dillon’s book. And he wasn’t the only one who did it,” Partridge says. The book came out in November 2015. It’s a journey and it’s a search after truth. Two weeks later, Dillon collapsed on a hike and then died in a local hospital at the age of 47. Jacob Lau (left) and Cameron Partridge worked together to finally get the memoir of Michael Dillon/Lobzang Jivaka published. And it is saturated with [Dillon’s] spiritual quest.”  
Dillon grew up in the Church of England and he credited men of the clergy with getting him to think seriously about the purpose of life. Later, Dillon’s literary agent in London received the manuscript   in the mail. On a seaside walk, a boy opened up a gate and stepped aside to let Dillon walk through first. And eventually, he was ordained in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. But when Laura got a little older, people said it was high time to give up the tomboy thing and start acting like a young lady. Laura Maude Dillon was born in London on May 1,   1915. During the 1940s, medical transition was almost unheard of, which made Dillon sort of a human guinea pig, says Lau. He got serious about Buddhism and decided to become a monk. Dillon wrote about one incident that happened during the year before starting college. Then   came stories in the Indian press accusing him of being a British spy. Over several years in the 1940s, he also underwent a groundbreaking physical transition from female to male through a series of surgical operations. And it has lots of different peregrinations. Dillon also met sympathetic professionals, including physicians, who helped him legally change his name. But Dillon was definitely a pioneer. Credit:

Matthew Bell  

But these details of Dillon’s physical transition are not the primary focus of his memoir. He was working as a physician on a French ship ironically named the Liberté. He found a plastic surgeon to perform a double mastectomy. But he wanted to stay in India to continue his spiritual quest for truth. Partridge says this part of Dillon’s story resonated with him, as someone who also went through an ordination process as a trans man. Dillon felt there was no reason why, finally, his story could not be told.”   That was the name he typed, along with his Christian name, Michael Dillon, on the title page of his memoir, in May of 1962. As a child, Laura always liked boy stuff, like a military coat with anchor buttons. “I knew some of the sense of uncertainty and fear of being someone who was openly trans in an ordination process and not really knowing how it was going to work.”  
At one point in India,   Dillon was outed by one of his own Buddhist teachers. And Dillon felt crushed. “And I had a lot of personal resonances with a lot of his questions about transitioning.”  
“Working on the project helped me get through a lot of   … not great periods of my life as well.”  
For Dillon, his lowest point came in 1958, when he was outed by the press. But the hormones were a great help, Dillon wrote. At the age of 28, Dillon registered under the name of Lawrence Michael, becoming legally male. At first, Dillon simply wanted to escape public scrutiny. “He references when he went to re-register, whoever was behind the desk — and it makes me think about these little moments where we interact with the person behind the desk, how significant that can be — and he says, ‘Oh, we’ve had a few of these.’”  
It’s hard to say how many people in the United Kingdom legally re-registered to change their names from one gender to another around that time. They gradually helped him look more like a man, for example, by making it possible to grow a beard. But he soon found a new life path in Asia. A therapist who said he could help Dillon gave him the pills as sort of an afterthought. “The world acknowledges you as a kind of gendered being that you aren’t,” Lau says, “[And] sees you in ways that you don’t see yourself.”  
Lau calls it   “a moment of misrecognition.”  
“That moment at the gate is one of the most striking moments in the book to me,” says Cameron Partridge, an Episcopal priest and former lecturer at Harvard Divinity School. “I really connected with the memoir in a personal way,” Partridge says. “Testosterone … had just been synthesized, back in the 30s, and at that point, testosterone was given in oral tablets or pills, which is discounted because it destroys your liver,” Lau says. That was in 1943, and Partridge says this was a turning point in Dillon’s life. That question propelled Dillon through different phases of his own life, as a student at Oxford, as a surgeon with the British Merchant Navy, and in the last phase of his life,   as a novice Buddhist monk   in India. A lot of trans people experience moments like these, says Jacob Lau, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Irvine. Reporters showed up on the ship and wanted to take Dillon’s picture. He let them, and he answered their questions. And suddenly, after 15 years, his secret was out. Related: These photos show the courage and tragedy of LGBTQ life in Peru
Partridge and Lau helped get “Out of the Ordinary” published and they wrote an introduction for the book. And in 1945, Dillon became the first person born female to undergo phalloplasty surgery. For   Lau, who was going through transition himself when he started working on this book project, Dillon’s story helped him get through some difficult times. But all of that was just part of this Englishman’s remarkable story of personal transformation. “It’s huge.

ISIS claims responsibility for the deadly attack inside a Turkish nightclub on New Year’s night

30 warning of the risk of attacks by ISIS in Istanbul and Ankara on New Year’s night, the paper said. But there was no indication of their relationship to the attacker. Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said Sunday that intense efforts were underway to find the gunman, and expressed hope that he would be captured soon. It has in the past, however, claimed individual assassinations of Syrian anti-jihadist activists in the south of Turkey. World leaders rushed to condemn the nightclub shooting, with Russian President Vladimir Putin saying it was “hard to imagine a crime more cynical than the killing of civilians during a New Year’s celebration.” They included three Lebanese nationals, two Jordanians and three Iraqis, officials in their respective countries said. Sixty-five people were wounded. Hurriyet said investigators believe the gunman may be from the Central Asian states of Kyrgyzstan or Uzbekistan. At least one German was killed. According to the Hurriyet daily, the gunman then fired off four magazines containing a total of 120 bullets around the club, as terrified guests flung themselves into the freezing waters of the Bosphorus in panic. ‘Danger continues’  
Arriving by taxi at the plush Reina nightclub on the shores of the Bosphorus, the gunman produced a weapon, reportedly a Kalashnikov, and shot dead a policeman and civilian at the entrance. Anti-terror police made their first arrests in the attack, which unleashed scenes of panic among partygoers at one of Istanbul’s swankiest venues and killed mostly foreign tourists. “The danger continues,” wrote columnist Abdulkadir Selvi in Hurriyet. The pro-government daily Yeni Akit caused a furor   on social media with a headline declaring the United States was the “number one suspect” over the attack. The ISIS statement said the attack was in response to Turkey’s military intervention against the jihadists in war-ravaged Syria the military presses a four-month incursion to oust jihadists from the border area. Late on Sunday, police rushed to Istanbul’s Kurucesme district after a tip-off but the operation did not produce any arrest. The Islamic State jihadist group on Monday claimed the shooting rampage inside a glamorous Istanbul nightclub on New Year’s night that killed 39 people, as police hunted the attacker who remains on the run. It accused Turkey, a majority-Muslim country, of being a servant of Christians, in a possible reference to Ankara’s alliance with the international coalition fighting ISIS in neighboring Syria and Iraq. The shooting took place just 75 minutes into 2017 after a bloody year in Turkey in which hundreds of people were killed in violence blamed on both ISIS jihadists and Kurdish militants. In a statement circulated on social media, the jihadist group said one of the “soldiers of the caliphate” had carried out the attack on the Reina nightclub. A Canadian woman, a Russian woman and a teenage Arab Israeli woman were also among dead. ‘No crime more cynical’  
NTV television said the bodies of 25 foreigners killed in the attack were to be handed back to their families on Monday following identification. But after changing clothes, the gunman left the nightclub in the ensuing chaos and has managed to evade security forces. According to Turkish press reports, the latest figures show 12 Turks were killed in the attack alongside 27 foreigners, including one Belgian-Turkish dual national. The attack evoked memories of the November 2015 carnage in Paris when ISIS jihadists unleashed a gun and bombing rampage on nightspots in the French capital, killing 130 people including 90 at the Bataclan concert hall. Turkish press reports said at least seven Saudi nationals died but this has yet to be confirmed by Riyadh. This is the first time ISIS has issued a clear and undisputed claim for an attack inside Turkey, despite being blamed for several major strikes in Istanbul and other cities over the last year. In the last few weeks, the forces have encountered fierce opposition from the jihadists around the town of al-Bab. The attacker may be linked to the same cell that in June carried out a triple suicide bombing and gun attack at Istanbul’s Ataturk airport blamed on ISIS that left 47 people dead, the paper added. The foreigners who died — most of them from Arab countries and including Muslims — had come to the club to celebrate a special night in style. “So long as this terrorist is not seized we do not know when and where a massacre could take place.”
The Dogan news agency said anti-terror police have detained eight suspects. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who said the nightclub bloodbath sought to sow “chaos,” was on Monday due to chair a meeting of the Turkish cabinet. Turkey also received intelligence from the United States on Dec. The army said Turkish warplanes launched new airstrikes around al-Bab.

The weight of gender bias on women’s scientific careers

But in 2016, sexual harassment isn’t the only major hurdle that female scientists still face: Systemic gender bias is keeping many women from advancing their scientific careers, and there are studies to prove it. An internal Hubble review recently found that even during her tenure, male-led applications for telescope time had a higher success rate than those led by women. She says that women, especially in male-dominated fields like engineering, tend to publish in more prestigious journals. In a 2014 survey of field researchers, 26 percent of female respondents reported that they had been assaulted at field research sites, and another 71 percent reported experiencing harassment. So that if you’re hiring a woman or a minority, you’re somehow compromising on the quality and the standards that you would expect in science.”
In addition to reducing the scientific community’s skepticism about bias, Cassidy Sugimoto says there’s more that needs to be done — like training more people to have conversations about implicit bias   and thinking critically about how labor in science labs is distributed. So people look at that and say, ‘It’s as good as it could possibly be.’”
“What I hope people are thinking about is that … white men are a shrinking fraction of the pie in this country, and if we’re not tapping all the talent that’s out there, we’re not doing as well as we could.”
This article is based on an interview that aired on PRI’s   Science Friday. And until we fully address bias in the sciences, Meg Urry adds, we’re selling ourselves short on scientific discoveries. “So we heard about citations and letters of recommendation,” she says. “Funding and proposals, there are a number of astronomy studies that show that women have less chance of getting their proposals accepted. Whether people are invited speakers or win prizes, those are biased by gender. “There are still skeptics who argue that this is due to some inherent differences in the content or quality of women’s work,” she says, adding that recent studies have shattered that myth: “Modeling all the properties of articles and predicting citation rates, we find that these systematic biases still exist against work authored by women.”
Authoring papers is just one aspect of building a scientific career, but another study recently showed that bias extends to another job-winning factor — letters of recommendation. For several years, Urry led the Hubble Space Telescope proposal review committee. PRI.org

The cases have shed light on the sexual harassment and assault that many scientists say has long been a pervasive, poorly addressed issue in the field — and one that systematically affects women scientists. Researchers analyzed recommendation letters for postdoctoral fellowships in the geosciences (a field in which women hold just 10 percent of full professorships, despite receiving 40 percent of doctoral degrees).  

Credit:

Fermilab/Lauren Biron [Public domain]/Wikimedia Commons
 

In fact, Meg Urry, the former president of the American Astronomical Society, and now a professor of astronomy and physics at Yale, points out that “every single one” of the major metrics considered in hiring, promoting or giving tenure to a scientist has been shown to be biased by gender. In her research, Cassidy Sugimoto has traced gender bias all the way down to how scientific labor is divided and performed. Teaching evaluations, even, the status of the publications, as was mentioned earlier. “What we found was that our results were very similar [for the geosciences], in that men … received more of these outstanding letters, and women were much less likely to receive them,” she says. “Not only does that show that this person really doesn’t know much about how implicit bias works, but these sorts of comments also give rise to a very damaging perspective — that there’s a trade-off between diversity and excellence. They found that female applicants are only half as likely as their male peers to receive “excellent” versus “good” letters of recommendation. Those tend to go more to men than to women.”
Another surprising finding of the study? “Whether it was a male writing the letter, or a female writing the letter, it was very similar.”
Dutt argues that the gender bias exhibited in preferentially glowing recommendation letters probably doesn’t come from a “conscious intent to harm someone.” It’s more likely the product of widespread cultural stereotypes, she says. But mounting evidence is painting a picture of just how deep-rooted those gender stereotypes are in the scientific community. “So in short, women were the hands of science, but men were choosing which questions to ask.”

Astronomer Meg Urry is shown here presenting   at Fermilab. “And when I say outstanding letters, I mean the ones that portray the applicant to be this top-notch scientist, this role model, this leader, this pioneer, this rising star. “In searches, we hear comments like, ‘Let’s not look at race or gender, let’s just look at merit,’” Kuheli Dutt says. But even then, their work receives fewer citations. We typically get a couple of Nobel prizes every season, and we have amazing discoveries that have fueled our economy. “And I think we need to continue to do research that brings light to these disparities, whether it’s about gender, race, social class, citizenship or other variables that impede our progress in terms of a healthy scientific system,” she says. They produce more, and their work is more highly cited.”
Sugimoto was the lead author on a 2013 study which found that papers with female lead authors receive fewer citations than those with male lead authors. “As you know, this is how we do our work, supposedly,” she says. Researchers recently determined that for nearly three decades, underrepresented minority scientists have consistently been awarded grants from the National Institutes of Health at lower rates than their white and mixed-race peers. In a Science Friday panel, scientists discussed how gender bias manifests in myriad ways over the course of a career — and what should be done to address it. “The gender of the letter writer didn’t seem to matter,” Dutt says. “I think we really have a problem here where we need to get people to understand they have biases that they don’t even realize,” she says. “They’re more likely to be in leading roles. This year, as she writes in a blog post, the telescope proposals did not include the name of the principal investigator. So all these things that that are how we measure excellence are systematically biased against women.”
But the bias can be subtle. “And so people are very resistant to the idea that they’re not objective.”
It’s a resistance that plays out across multiple forms of bias in the scientific community. “We found that men were more likely to be granted authorship for conceptual tasks like designing or writing the study, whereas women are granted authorship for technical tasks,” she says. “American science is extraordinarily successful. “Our studies have reconfirmed that men’s voices matter more in science,” says Cassidy Sugimoto, an associate professor of Informatics at Indiana University Bloomington. From Urry’s perspective, fighting entrenched bias in the sciences means facing one particularly stubborn issue: It’s difficult to get scientists to admit that they’re not objective in the first place. Kuheli Dutt, the study’s lead author and the assistant director of academic affairs and diversity at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, says that similar studies of recommendation letters have already been done in medicine, psychology, chemistry   and biochemistry. A series of high-profile sexual misconduct investigations have sent waves through the scientific academy this year.Player utilitiesPopout
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A manhunt is underway in Istanbul after an attack at a nightclub kills dozens

Many revelers threw themselves into the freezing waters of the Bosphorus in panic. The assailant “left the gun and went away from the scene of the incident,” he told reporters in Istanbul. The shooting spree at the waterside Reina nightclub was unleashed just 75 minutes into 2017, after a year of unprecedented bloodshed that saw hundreds of people die in strikes blamed on jihadists and Kurdish militants and a bloody failed coup. “Just as we were settling down, by the door there was a lot of dust and smoke. On December 10, 44 people were killed in a double bombing in Istanbul after a football match hosted by top side Besiktas, an attack claimed by the Kurdistan Freedom Falcons, seen as a radical offshoot of the outlawed PKK rebel group. Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu added that of 20 victims identified so far, 15 were foreigners and five were Turks. The bloodbath came as the Turkish army wages a four-month incursion in Syria to oust ISIS jihadists and Kurdish militants from the border area, suffering increasing casualties. In Istanbul, at least 17,000 police officers had been deployed and some, as is customary in Turkey, dressed themselves as Santa Claus as cover, according to television reports. Television pictures showed party-goers emerging from the Istanbul nightclub in a state of shock. Credit:

Huseyin Aldemir/Reuters

‘Walking on top of people’
From Sydney to Paris, Rio to London, security had been boosted over fears that the New Year festivities could be a target for violent extremists. But he denied earlier reports the person had used a Santa Claus costume as disguise. In June, 47 people were killed in a triple suicide bombing and gun attack at Istanbul’s Ataturk airport, with authorities blaming ISIS. Two weeks ago, an off-duty policeman assassinated Russia’s ambassador to Turkey in an Ankara art gallery. Another 65 people were being treated in hospital. “When I was walking, people were walking on top of people.”
Turkey in 2016 saw more attacks than any other year in the history of the country. France said a dual-national Tunisian-French woman had died along with her Tunisian husband, while India said it had lost two nationals. Istanbul governor Vasip Sahin said at the scene on the shores of the Bosphorus that the attacker “targeted innocent people who had only come here to celebrate the New Year and have fun.”
The attack evoked memories of the November 2015 carnage in Paris when ISIS militants went on a gun and bombing rampage on nightspots in the French capital, killing 130 people including 90 at the Bataclan concert hall. Erdogan said in a statement that with such attacks, “they are working to destroy our country’s morale and create chaos.”
Turkey would deploy every means to fight “terror organizations” and the countries supporting them, Erdogan said, without elaborating. “It was an armed terrorist.”
No-one has yet claimed responsibility for the bloodshed. German Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned “an inhumane, sneaky attack on people who wanted to celebrate” while Pope Francis condemned the shooting in his New Year message. Credit:

Reuters

‘Create chaos’
There were a number of Arabs among the dead and wounded, including Saudis, Jordanians and Tunisians. The assailant shot dead a policeman and a civilian at the club entrance and then turned his gun on partygoers inside where up to 700 people were ringing in the New Year. Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the gunman was still at large after slipping away unnoticed after the attack. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the carnage sought to sow chaos and undermine peace, but vowed that Turkey would never bow to the threat. The United States and France voiced outrage at Sunday’s attack and said they stood alongside their NATO ally in its fight against terror. A young Israeli woman, reportedly aged 19, was killed and another injured, Israel’s foreign ministry said. Gunshots rang out,” witness Sefa Boydas, a professional footballer, told AFP. A former employee of the Reina nightclub reacts outside following an attack by a gunman in Istanbul. Police in Turkey are searching on Sunday for gunman who killed at least 39 people at a nightclub Instanbul. Turkey is also spearheading a ceasefire plan with Russia aimed at creating a basis for peace talks to end the near six-year civil war. Soylu said the gunman had arrived with a gun concealed underneath an overcoat but subsequently exited the venue wearing a different garment. “It’s hard to imagine a crime more cynical than the killing of civilians during a New Year’s celebration,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a condolence message to Erdogan. by Stuart Williams with Raziye Akkoc/AFP ‘No crime more cynical’
Mainly Muslim Turkey’s religious affairs agency Diyanet condemned the attack, saying the fact it took place in a nightclub “was no different to it being in a market or place of worship.”
Turkey is still reeling from a failed July coup blamed by the government on the US-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen that has been followed by a relentless purge of his alleged supporters from state institutions.

Why the moons of Uranus are named after characters in Shakespeare

The audio story was made possible with support from the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and the Folger Shakespeare Library. So, there’s reason to believe that when his contemporary William Lassell   stumbled upon two more of Uranus’ moons in 1851, John Herschel may have had a hand in their naming, too. (Umbriel is a figure in an Alexander Pope poem, and Ariel turns up as a character in both Shakespeare’s and Pope’s works. “What’s in a name?” Shakespeare’s star-crossed Juliet famously wanted to know. But when it comes to Uranus’ moons, details are murky about who exactly began doling out Shakespearean monikers. This was really a big deal,” says Derek Sears, a scientist at NASA’s Ames Research Center, who’s writing a biography of Kuiper. And true to tradition, Kuiper named the new moon Miranda, after a character in “The Tempest.”
In the 1980s, NASA’s Voyager 2 probe found 10 new moons around Uranus. The craters on Mercury are artists and musicians, like Bach, John Lennon   and Disney.   
What is certain is this: Next to Titania and Oberon, the moons Lassell learned of became known as Ariel and Umbriel. He also named Saturn’s moons. “So you are now putting Kuiper among these prominent astronomers from the 19th and 18th centuries. But according to Sears, sometimes simple has nothing to do with it. Pope is the literary exception to Shakespeare’s claim on Uranus’ moons.)
Continuing the tradition  
Nevertheless, a   clear Shakespearean precedent had been set by 1948, when the American astronomer Gerard Kuiper discovered a fifth moon of Uranus. Belinda, named for a Pope heroine, rounds out the leading ladies. He never discovered any moons, but he was a three-time president of the Royal Astronomical Society and one of Britain’s most prominent scientists in the 1850s. For centuries, whoever discovered a celestial body usually had dibs on the naming rights. PRI.org

There are constellations and planets christened after Greek and Roman gods. To label them, members of the Outer Planets Task Group in the International Astronomical Union’s Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature went back to the source: They started with Puck, from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The remaining moons sound like a character list out of the “Complete Works of Shakespeare.” They include Cordelia, Ophelia, Bianca, Cressida, Desdemona, Juliet, Portia   and Rosalind. They named them Stephano and Trinculo, after the drunken butler and drunken jester in “The Tempest.”
It would, of course, be more practical to quit linking celestial discoveries with mythological heroes, rock stars   or the odd mix of characters from Shakespeare and Pope. “I’ve read a huge amount of what Herschel wrote. And as far as I know, he’d never heard of Shakespeare,” Hoskin says. But the Shakespeare references had to come from somewhere. Gladman and Kavelaars named the next moon Sycorax — in reference to “The Tempest,” but also because Kavelaars loved the television show “Doctor Who.” Several years later, they found two more moons, which had staggering, off-kilter orbits. The first two moons called Titania and Oberon, after the king and queen of the fairies in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,”   were discovered by William Herschel in 1787. (He was also a famous composer.) But Herschel simply referred to the satellites as “number one” and “number two,” according to Cambridge University historian Michael Hoskin. In 1899, William Lassell’s daughter   Jane Lassell told a reporter that the moons’ names were given by Sir John Herschel, “to whom my father applied.” What that means for sure, we’ll never know — she also said she lost their letters in a move — and Herschel never took the credit. And the moons of the planet Uranus — there are, impressively, 27 altogether — have literary ties — 25 of them relate to characters in Shakespeare’s plays. And when the question of what to name the moons was raised, Gladman — who knew his Shakespeare — had a ready answer. The images were created using a technique that made faint celestial bodies more visible. So Caliban leaped out right away, as you know, a creature emerging out of the dark,” Sears says. And for those of us peering skyward, it’s a question for the ages: Where do celestial bodies get their names from?Player utilitiesPopout
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downloadListen to the Story. One clue: Herschel’s son, John Herschel, also became an astronomer. Two young astronomers, Brett Gladman and JJ Kavelaars, found two more moons in the mid-1990s, as they pored over images taken at the Palomar Observatory in San Diego. “What’s a Shakespearean character that lives in the dark? “It’s just something about the right side of the brain of the astronomers that says, ‘Let’s give them all names,’ you know — totally unnecessary, but we kind of like it.”
This article is based on a story that aired on PRI’s   Studio 360. “I do think most astronomers have some sort of a huge romantic streak,” he says.