Which is sadder, factory-farmed animals or the carnivores who eat them? The Onion weighs in

Originally posted on Grist:

We’ve all heard about the graphic, stomach-turning violence of animal flesh being ripped apart by … people’s teeth? That’s the point of an Onion piece that totally nails the grossness of being carnivorous in the language of a factory farming expose:

[M]any [are] voicing their revulsion at images of spare ribs having their muscle tissue noisily yanked from the bone, cold cuts being ingested whole, and one particularly chilling episode in which a pulled pork sandwich is jarringly pulverized by slashing incisors as a combination of grease, saliva, and tangy St. Louis-style barbecue sauce oozes out and collects in sizable pools on a chin and shirtfront.

With the same vocabulary activists use to shame industrial meat, The Onion expresses faux dismay at dimly lit, unsanitary living rooms and the killing floor that constitutes your neighborhood Arby’s. Meanwhile, an accompanying video apes the suffering of factory animals by “exposing” the pain…

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Peep popular bike routes in this hella-detailed national map

Originally posted on Grist:

People use Strava to map their jogs, bike rides — even proposals . Now you can check out more than 77 million bike routes around the country.

For instance, according to Strava, Seattleites love cycling downtown and even over to Redmond. And a few brave souls even circled Mount Rainier. Most of Washington hasn’t been biked, at least not using the route-mapping site, so it’s cool to see bright spots near Spokane and Bellingham. (Here’s Manhattan, if that’s more your speed.)

Downtown Seattle bike routes

Strava Downtown Seattle bike routes.

One snarky Gizmodo commenter noted, “Nobody exercises in the Midwest.” It’s true that the Dakotas have barely any blue spots indicating bike routes. But we’re betting that’s due to lack of bike paths and ways of baking cyclists into infrastructure, rather than laziness.

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Canada’s middle class is now the world’s richest

Originally posted on Quartz:

America’s middle class has been richest in the world for decades, but as David Leonhardt and Kevin Quealy write in the  Times ‘ new site The Upshot, they’ve lost that distinction to  their neighbors from the north .

Canada is officially home to the richest middle class on the planet, according to figures crunched from the Luxembourg Income Study Database. Here’s the last 30 years of America’s dwindling income advantage in a handy chart.

Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 9.06.29 AM

How did the US lose the lead? The authors blame three broad factors: (1) Canada’s education attainment is outpacing the US and most of the world; (2) American middle-class market wages aren’t keeping up with overall economic growth; and (3) Other governments are doing more to redistribute income to poorer families in other countries, particularly in western and northern Europe.

One word that doesn’t appear in the article, however, is housing. The US is emerging from a catastrophic…

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The FCC doesn’t want to destroy net neutrality, but it’s going to anyway

Originally posted on Gigaom:

The Federal Communications Commission doesn’t want companies like Netflix or Viacom to have to pay to get their content to end users of broadband networks, but it doesn’t see a way (or maybe even a reason) to ban the practice. In a call with reporters on Thursday, FCC officials laid out the agency’s thinking on new network neutrality rules and tried to address concerns that the internet as we know it is broken.

The agency’s hope is to have new rules in place by the end of this year, and it plans to release a public document called a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) outlining its thinking and asking questions about the new rules. It plans to release this NPRM in three weeks at its May 15 open meeting. Once the documents are released, the public will have a chance to comment on them.

What was once unreasonable…

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Apple is ready for its closeup on clean energy

Originally posted on Gigaom:

Apple is celebrating Earth Day this week by shining a spotlight on its clean energy and carbon footprint reduction initiatives. While Apple has been working on having 100 percent of its data centers run on renewable energy sources for a couple years, the company on Monday is showing off an environmentally-themed video narrated by CEO Tim Cook, accompanied by some awesome solar photos on Apple.com , and a long feature in Wired on its clean power projects.

Why now (beyond the somewhat contrived Earth Day event)? When I published this investigative piece last November on Apple’s solar projects, it was difficult to get information from Apple on the projects. Now about six months later, Apple is ready to talk.

Apple's solar farm in North Carolina

Apple’s solar farm in North Carolina

One of the reasons for Apple’s new willingness to talk is that many of Apple’s clean power projects are now far beyond the experimental phase.

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2013 Income Taxes: Didn’t Meet the 4/15 Deadline?

Didn’t File or Pay on Time?

INDIANAPOLIS (April 21, 2014) –Taxpayers who missed the April 15 individual income tax filing deadline should still file and pay their taxes to minimize penalty and interest.

Taxpayers filing and paying after the deadline should consider doing so electronically. Electronic returns and payments are processed quickly, while paper returns with payments can take up to 12 weeks to process.

INfreefile, the department’s free online filing program, is still available for qualified taxpayers to file federal and state taxes at www.freefile.dor.in.gov. Visit www.freefile.dor.in.gov to see if you qualify based on the vendors’ options.

Taxpayers can pay tax owed online through the department’s secure ePay site at www.epay.in.gov.

If you cannot pay your taxes due, pay as much as possible to minimize penalty and interest charges. The department will send a bill for the remainder of the amount due, which will include penalty and current interest. After receiving the bill, go to www.intaxpay.in.gov to see if you qualify for a payment plan. Taxpayers will qualify if they owe more than $100 and can pay at least 20 percent down.

If you need assistance, or have any questions about your return, please contact the department at (317) 232-2240.

Five children’s books with the best leadership lessons for adults

Originally posted on Quartz:

Managers may rely on a multitude of tropes but seldom do we hear them encouraging their teams to “ride the wise eagle.”

Yet their workers could chase away evil worms and cultivate courage by reading and sharing Neil Gaiman‘s Instructions (2010)a 40-page children’s book that may resonate with leaders or anyone steering their business into unknown territories.

Every year, authors produce a sea of business and leadership books with titles such as Rita Gunther McGrath’s The End of Competitive Advantage and Lois Frankel’s Nice Girls Still Don’t Get the Corner Office. They share strategy and corporate stories and may be useful in leadership development or managing change.

Yet few are as compelling, as concise or magical, as a simple journey into a child’s picture book.

“People can chose easily to get stuck in the known and lose sight of the potential,” said Pam Rogers

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