Ethan Explains Creating Humans 5/16/16

You’ve heard of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) relating to food? Well now scientists are talking about completely creating humans through synthetic DNA, a human GMO. No sperm or ovum required at all. There can’t be any possible bad outcomes a la science fiction right?

From the Washington Post “Secret Harvard meeting on synthetic human genomes incites ethics debate“:

About 150 scientists assembled at Harvard on Tuesday for an off-the-record, no-media-allowed discussion of how to create, from scratch, an intact genome, including the genetic code of a human being. 
The idea is to go beyond "reading" genetic material to actively "writing" it, George Church, a Harvard Medical School researcher who helped organized the event, told The Post in an interview Friday morning.

Scientists can synthesize DNA chemically, and these techniques could ultimately lead to complete genomes that could be implanted in cells for research purposes. 
No one should panic just yet about mad scientists running amok: The researchers are not talking about making synthetic human beings. 
But the gathering drew a rebuke from two academics who heard about the event and didn't think it should have been held behind closed doors.

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Ethan Explains Darwin Award Selfies 5/12/16

 

So many additions for the Darwin Award list as selfie deaths in 2016 are well ahead of 2015’s pace. Put your phone down and look around!

From the CBS News article on selfie deaths:

Last year, more people died from selfies than shark attacks. And many more have been injured by taking their own picture.
Deaths have been caused by distracted photo-takers falling off cliffs, crashing cars, being hit by trains and shooting themselves while posing with guns.

Apparently, guns don't kill people -- selfies do.

Things have gotten so bad that Mumbai has outlawed selfies after 19 deaths in India. Pamplona officials have banned them during the annual Running of the Bulls.

And New York just became the first state to ix-nay "tiger selfies," for obvious reasons.

Tune in to KGO 810 today from noon to 2pm Pacific Time AM 810 – www.kgoraKGO810dio.com , I’ll interview Ewan McGregor about his new film and speak with Judy Joo, Iron Chef and Korean food restauranteur.

Ethan Explains Compromise 5/11/16

Presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont told the editorial board of the San Francisco Chronicle yesterday that he won’t even attempt to compromise with the Republicans. Is this what we’ve become, children throwing tantrums when we don’t get our way?

From the article at sfgate.com:

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders says he learned from the mistakes President Obama made in his first term — they taught him that if he wins the White House, he won’t be able to compromise with Republicans in Congress.

“I think a keen mistake that the president made is that he refused to recognize that reality — that these guys (Republicans) were never serious about compromise,” the presidential candidate said in a meeting with The Chronicle’s editorial board Tuesday.

“He kept extending an olive branch, and he kept getting his hand slapped,” Sanders said. 
“I do not believe that right-wing Republicans are prepared to work with a progressive president.”

The way to break that logjam, he said, is for people who support Sanders’ “political revolution” to contact their members of Congress directly.

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Ethan Explains College Student Loans 5/9/16

57% of Millenials regret their college student loans and 50% have no plan for paying back the seemingly overwhelming amount of debt. What are we doing wrong and what can we do differently? I have some ideas like deemphasizing the four year liberal arts degree (which many get done in five to seven years) and focus on well paying blue collar jobs with a two year degree or less.

From Citizens Financial Group’s  survey on student loan debt:

In light of this, some Millennials now express buyer’s remorse regarding their college investment, with 57 percent saying they regret taking out as many student loans as they did. 
More than one-third (36%) of Millennial graduates with student loans said they would not have gone to college if they had known how much it was going to cost them.

“Unfortunately, the long-term cost of college is leading some graduates to question the value of their investment – in many cases, before they have fully explored their opportunities to significantly reduce their payments,” Coughlin said. 
“Similar to our approach to working with student borrowers and their families at the front end of the college journey, we are committed to helping graduates understand their options and manage their debt in a way that complements their broader financial goals.”

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Ethan Explains TSA Government Spending 5/6/16

The Transportation Security Administration, better known as the TSA, is claiming they need yet more money or you’re going to suffer at the airport waiting in lines this summer. Do the government spending problems reflect your personal financial situation?

From The Hill:

“As we look ahead to the surge in summer travel, we will continue to consider a number of other steps to ensure enhanced aviation security while also maximizing efficiency at check points,” Johnson said in a statement.

But he emphasized that some of these steps are going to require money. 
He called on Congress to reallocate fiscal 2016 funding to pay for overtime for security officers and fulfill other “critical short-term needs.” 

“These funds will allow TSA to expand the work hours of screening officers in peak periods at high volume airports,” Johnson said.

Congress may be reluctant to pump more money into the agency, which has come under fire for high-profile security lapses and been plagued by reports of mismanagement at the senior level.

But with constituents spending as long as three hours in security lines and 600 passengersmissing flights in one day, lawmakers — who fly regularly themselves — may be nudged to address the issue in some capacity.

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Ethan Explains Vote Your Conscience 5/4/16

Ted Cruz drops out of the race after Donald J. Trump won Indiana. Bernie Sanders beat Hillary Clinton in Indiana, yet Sec. Clinton is still the presumptive nominee. I say vote your conscience in the primary, regardless of what everyone else is saying who will win.

From Nate Silver‘s FiveThirtyEight:

The Democratic race remains fundamentally unchanged after tonight’s win by Sanders. 
Yes, his victory was somewhat surprising, given that all of the polls had Clinton winning and by an average of 7 percentage points. 
And yes, Sanders has promised to fight on in the primary until perhaps the convention. 
The problem for the Sanders campaign remains delegate math and demographics.

And

The psychology of Democratic voters continues to look detached from the reality of delegate math. 
Trump and Clinton are both pretty much presumptive nominees at this point, but Trump is winning Indiana with about 51 percent of the vote tonight while Clinton is taking only 47 percent and could end up even lower. 
As Trump consolidates Republican support, it’s more apparent than ever that Clinton needs a strong Sanders endorsement to unite the Democratic base.

Tune in to my daily KGO Ethan Bearman Show noon to 2pm Pacific (3 to 5 pm Eastern) on AM 810 on online at www.kgoradio.com

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Ethan Explains First Impressions 5/2/16

How you present yourself to the world matters. People judge based on appearance/first impression. What first impressions are you presenting to the world?

From Leonard Mlodinow in Psychology Today “How We Are Judged by Our Appearance

We all know that looks matter. 
What most of us don’t understand is just how much looks matter, and how difficult it is for us to ignore a person’s appearance when making a social judgment. 
I’m not talking just about romantic relationships, I’m talking about all our human interactions. 
And by appearance, I’m not speaking simply of the “beauty,” dimension, but also of many other qualities of one’s appearance.
As I wrote in a recent Op Ed piece for the New York Times, recent research suggests that we may need to adopt a more cynical attitude. 
It turns out that a candidate’s appearance — not beauty, but a look of competence — can generate a significant vote swing. 
Furthermore, this effect is not only powerful but also subliminal. 
Few of us realize that appearance determines our vote, yet for a significant number of us, it may.

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Ethan Explains Click Bait 4/29/16

Admit it, we all fall for click bait. I know I do and regret it the majority of the tim. Why do we do it and what is wrong with it? I cite a specific problem with our reliance on click bait for getting our so called news.

Here is what Jeffrey Dvorkin said about click bait for PBS NewsHour

Journalism is also being Uber-ized.
Increasingly, content isn’t created by journalists once employed by legacy media.
It comes from freelancers, citizen journalists, bloggers and vloggers.
Freelancers are being hired while experienced, older journalists are laid off.
In the rush to return to the once-rich profit margins of the early 2000s, media organizations are being urged by their shareholders to dispense with expensive ventures like international reporting.
Newspapers have closed or been downsized, broadcasters have cut their more expensive (and more labor-intensive) content.
News consultants like Frank N. Magid Associates are hired to tell their news clients that weather, traffic and crime, or WTC, are what most audiences prefer.

Not coincidentally, WTC also happens to be the cheapest and most readily available content.
And all three bits of low-hanging journalistic fruit originate from government sources: weather from the National Weather Service (Environment Canada based in Ottawa), traffic reports from various Department of Transportations at the state and provincial levels and, of course, crime from local police forces.
(The last of these may have a financial incentive to make sure that the media reports as much criminal activity as possible, even when crime rates are declining.)

Be sure to tune in to KGO 810 today noon to 2pm Pacific time (2-4 Central) as I interview Gov. Gary Johnson, and have Professor Jessica Levinson on to discuss a major court ruling regarding your kids and grandkids 529 college savings plan – www.kgoradio.com

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Ethan Explains Puppy People 4/28/16

Meet the newest member of the #Bearman family – #havanese #dog #puppy #adorable

A photo posted by Ethan Bearman (@ethanbearman) on

There is a new puppy in my family. We love her dearly, but puppies are a lot of work, like a newborn baby. Why people fail with puppies is a microcosm of many of humanity’s ills. What do you think?

Here is what Cesar Milan says about your new puppy:

New puppy owners often make the mistake of endlessly worrying about finding the right accessories, puppy treats, or bed. 
They spend little or no time thinking about how or what they will teach their new puppy. 
Yes, a puppy needs nutritious food and a safe, warm place to live, but another equally powerful and important biological necessity is the need for a strong pack leader.

Puppies are naturally hard-wired to follow a pack leader. 
A pack leader is, by definition, strong, stable, and consistent; traits many new puppy owners forget. 
Many of my clients are strong leaders in their jobs, but when they come home, they turn to mush with their dogs. 
Then they come to me puzzled as to why their dog won't behave.

Puppies sense our confidence levels and will take control if they perceive us as weak. 
When this happens, bad behaviors, such as excessive barking, chewing, leash-pulling, or anxiety, will develop.

The most important thing you can do is become your puppy’s pack leader. 
This role doesn’t begin when your dog is six months old or when he’s bad; it should be maintained throughout the entire dog training experience. 
For your new puppy to grow into a healthy, balanced dog, you must demonstrate leadership from day one!

You’ll want to tune in to my KGO 810 show weekdays noon to 2pm Pacific Time (3-5pm Eastern) on AM 810 or online at www.kgoradio.com

Ethan Explains Apple’s Drop 4/27/16

Apple announced their first drop in sales since 2003 and revenue fell 13%. Why does this happen and who will be the tech visionary in Silicon Valley to replace Steve Jobs?

From Fortune:

Along with confirming a widely predicted decline in iPhones sales during the first three months of the year, Apple on Tuesday reported its first drop in quarterly revenue on an annual basis since 2003. But the whole point of quarterly earnings is to glean information we didn’t already know.

So here are a few pieces of new information that are worth pondering as investors try to decide whether the most valuable U.S. public company is headed for a torturous decline or about to emerge triumphant again.

CEO Tim Cook didn’t sound worried on the company’s call with analysts. “The future of Apple is very bright,” he said while alluding to exciting but unspecified new products.
In recent years, most of Apple’s sales growth has come from China, but that engine too has greatly slowed. Apple said its China sales shrunk by more than a quarter to $12.5 billion. The rate of growth had already slipped to 14% last quarter’s from jumps of 99%, 112%, and 71% in the three prior quarter. Further, the challenges are increasing after China forced Apple to shut downits iBooks store and iTunes movie service last week after just six months in operation, reducing the appeal of the iOS ecosystem there.

Tune in to The Ethan Bearman Show on KGO 810 in San Francisco noon to 2pm Pacific Time (1-3pm Mountain Time) each weekday – www.kgoradio.com