Tan skin, blonde hair, and black lungs: your new mental picture of the typical Los Angeles resident.
Based on the American Lung Association's "State of the Air 2014" report, which examined ozone and particle pollution data from 2010, 2011, and 2012, the Los Angeles-Long Beach metropolitan area is home to the most polluted ozone air in the entire country. That's right, Angelenos — despite the juice cleanses and hot yoga, your health mission is being thwarted by the very air you breathe while riding in your top-down convertible in December.
Los Angeles' infamous smog line. (David Butow/Redux/CORBIS)
And it's not just Los Angeles' infamous smog line that is bringing down California's air quality — the top five most polluted cities by ozone are located in the Golden State, with a sixth placing in the top 10.
As for the cleanest ozone air in the country? That belongs to Anchorage, Alaska, though the title changes depending on whether you're measuring by year-round particle pollution or short-term particle pollution.
Now, if you'll excuse me, my native Angeleno lungs and I are off to buy an air purifier. Kimberly Alters
Archaeologists working at the site of the ancient city of Stagira in Central Macedonia claim to have discovered the tomb of the great philosopher Aristotle, according to multiple reports by the Greek media. An official announcement is expected to be made by the team at the Aristotle 2400 Years World Congress.
"I have no hard proof, but strong indications lead me to almost certainty," archaeologist Kostas Sismanidis told Sigmalive of the discovery.
Aristotle was born in Stagira in 384 BC and died in 322 BC in Chalcis, where many believed he was buried. However, two literary sources pointed archaeologists to Stagira, where Aristotle's ashes may have later been transferred.
The 2,400-year-old tomb stands in the middle of Stagira with 360-degree views:
The top of the dome is at 10 meters and there is a square floor surrounding a Byzantine tower. A semi-circle wall stands at two meters in height. A pathway leads to the tomb's entrance for those that wished to pay their respects. Other findings included ceramics from the royal pottery workshops and fifty coins dated to the time of Alexander the Great. [Greek Reporter]
The Byzantines later destroyed the tomb and constructed a tower in its place.
Aristotle was a student of Plato, and later tutored Alexander the Great. His work on the natural sciences and metaphysics as well as ethics, government, and the arts have a lasting impact to this day. Jeva Lange
Just hours after seemingly accepting Sen. Bernie Sanders' challenge for a debate, Donald Trump has already backed out, CBS News reports. On Thursday morning, Trump reportedly said he was just kidding when he agreed on Wednesday night's Jimmy Kimmel Live to face off against Sanders.
Trump initially seemed keen on the idea because "it would have such high ratings," and he figured Sanders "would be easier to beat" than Hillary Clinton. Sanders had already agreed to the debate, tweeting he "look[s] forward to debating Donald Trump in California before the June 7 primary." Becca Stanek
The federal government is spending the great bulk of its technology budget maintaining old — indeed, sometimes wildly outdated — computer systems instead of staying up to date with current advances, finds a new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
"Specifically, 5,233 of the government's approximately 7,000 IT investments are spending all of their funds" on running old systems, the GAO said, many of which are considered "moderate to high risk" or outright "obsolete."
Perhaps the most egregious example is the use of eight-inch floppy disks to control nukes. The Pentagon's Strategic Automated Command and Control System, which "coordinates the operational functions of the United States' nuclear forces, such as intercontinental ballistic missiles, nuclear bombers, and tanker support aircrafts," operates on pre-1970s computers that still store data on giant floppy disks whose contents can be wiped with a magnet.
Some politicians are painters. Others, the muses.
Bernie Sanders evidently falls in the latter category, as an entire pop-up installation of Sanders-themed media has temporarily taken over a famous vacant L.A. fixture, Johnie's Coffee Shop Restaurant:
"We view this as an art piece," said Howard Gold, who was busy on Wednesday afternoon painting and fixing at the former diner. It closed in 2000, but it is still available for film shoots.
The idea, said Mr. Gold, whose family owns the property, is to deck the place in Sanders murals, posters and diner-style logos — the Bernie Sanders chicken bucket faces Wilshire — then open on Thursday for a reception that is expected to draw artists, movie stars, and Sanders supporters. [The New York Times]
Anticipated attendees include actresses Shailene Woodley and Frances Fisher, as well as film producer and real-life inspiration for The Big Lebowski, Jeff Dowd. Kii Arens, who has done art for The Who and Radiohead, among other bands, is one of the contributing artists as well as Donny Miller.
Donald Trump has reached the required 1,237 delegates to clinch the GOP nomination, according to a count by The Associated Press. Trump was pushed to victory by his win in the Washington state primary on Tuesday, and now has 1,238 delegates; other reports, such as one by CNN on Wednesday, have Trump just short of the required number. Unbound delegates exclusively told the AP they would support Trump, thereby tipping him to victory.
Trump became the presumptive nominee earlier this month after a major win in Indiana when his only remaining competitors chose to suspend their campaigns. Jeva Lange
Presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump has a vision for the future of the Republican Party, and he is describing it in language Marxists would recognize.
In an an interview with Bloomberg this week in which he commented that his "views are what everybody else’s views are," Trump answered a question about his plans for the GOP. "Five, 10 years from now — different party," he said. "You’re going to have a workers' party."
"Workers' Party" is a common name worldwide for political groups of a Marxist, socialist, communist, Leninist, Maoist, and/or Trotskyite persuasion. The single governing party of North Korea, for instance, is called the "Workers' Party of Korea." And here in the United States, the Communist Party USA was originally called the "Workers Party of America." Bonnie Kristian
As Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders wrestle over the fate of the Democratic Party and their congratulatory calls to one another after primary victories fade to a thing of the past, it can be difficult to remember a time when the two actually liked each other.
Even as some say Sanders risks cleaving the party by staying in the race — with others murmuring that he is threatening to hand the White House to Donald Trump — it was not so long ago when the two candidates considered each other with admiration:
The pair had something of an intellectual rapport. In a photo signed "Hillary Rodham Clinton, 1993," she wrote to Sanders, "Thanks for your commitment to real healthcare access for all Americans." Television footage showed Sanders standing directly over Clinton's left shoulder as she spoke on the topic at Dartmouth College. Even after their campaigns started going in different directions last year, they remained amiable. They ran into each other in the Amtrak Acela waiting room in New York City's Penn Station in June. "Bernie!" Clinton shouted across the room as he walked over to greet her. Sanders said quietly to an aide as they walked away, "Maybe I shouldn't say this, but I like her." [Time]
Still, if Sanders in fact loses to Clinton at the Philadelphia convention, as it appears he likely will, the terms of his surrender could get ugly. "Let's all remember, there is far more that unites us than divides us," Clinton spokesman Jesse Ferguson told Time — but perhaps these days, that's only wishful thinking. Jeva Lange