As y’all know my aunt and uncle have been heavily involved with the fight against asbestos in this country. Their latest endeavor has been assisting with consumer product testing. The results were released to the press this week. Seattle PI ran an exclusive article last Tuesday. Some highlights are below:
Asbestos has been found in a variety of consumer products, including one of this season’s biggest-selling Christmas toys, according to the nation’s largest asbestos victims organizations.
The CSI Fingerprint Examination Kit, two brands of children’s play clay, powdered cleanser, roof sealers, duct tapes, window glazing, spackling paste and small appliances were among the products in which asbestos was found by at least two of three labs hired by the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization . . .
. . . The kit, made in China, is one of several items licensed by CBS after its popular “CSI” science-crime shows. This model has an extensive array of plastic tools, inks and three types of very fine powders — white, black and glow-in-the-dark. The analysis done for the victim’s organization found high levels of two types of asbestos in the white and the glow powder
Physicians are especially concerned because of the significant likelihood of children breathing in asbestos fibers as they hunt for fingerprints and use a soft-bristled brush to move the powder around.
When Michael Moore made his recent documentary “Sicko”, he left out a segment because he thought no one would believe it. Now, through the power of the Internets, you can watch for yourself and discover the amazing infrastructure and services in Norway.
Now that’s what secret groups of talented artists and technicians should be doing! According to a Guardian article, a “cultural guerilla” group called Untergunther was recently cleared of charges related to breaking into a Paris monument and fixing its antique clock:
For a year from September 2005, under the nose of the Panthéon’s unsuspecting security officials, a group of intrepid “illegal restorers” set up a secret workshop and lounge in a cavity under the building’s famous dome. Under the supervision of group member Jean-Baptiste Viot, a professional clockmaker, they pieced apart and repaired the antique clock that had been left to rust in the building since the 1960s. Only when their clandestine revamp of the elaborate timepiece had been completed did they reveal themselves.
Can you picture that story as a heist film, something smart like “Sneakers”? It would be so cool…
This is a cute article about how Hollywood gets it wrong yet again. This time with the world of insects and how, well, the social ones are really all female. I mean, must we anthropomorphize even our sexist gender assumptions?
This is probably old news to all of you, but it’s good to get confirmation from developmental psychologists that electronic “educational toys” aren’t so educational after all:
Old-fashioned retro toys, such as red rubber balls, simple building blocks, clay and crayons, that don’t cost so much and are usually hidden in the back shelves are usually much healthier for children than the electronic educational toys, says Temple University developmental psychologist Kathy Hirsh-Pasek.