Mary Roach, accidental science writer, comedian, and author of Bonk: the Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, reveals 10 things you probably don't know about orgasm in a talk at Long Beach, California. Actually,  regular readers of Canadian Family Physician may already know Fact #5, the nugget about hiccups, and pig farmers may know Fact #7 about, well, pig farmers....

Cape Breton's young, tech-savvy, music aficionados discuss the provincial election's impact on their favorite industry. Hint: fiddles haven't been mentioned....

In describing the uncertainty around the June 9 election this morning, CBC Radio's Jean LaRoche said many voters would abandon the Tories, and most of those votes would of course go to the Liberals. This is conventional wisdom, based on a left-right spectrum that runs from the NDP, through the Liberals, to the Tories. There's a good chance it's wrong.
north-korea-2 Curtis Melvin, a PhD candidate at George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia,  has harnessed a vast network of citizen spies who use Google Earth's mapping tools to fill in the geographical blanks in the world's most secretive nation. The palace pictured above is one of 73 elite compounds enjoyed by North Korea's Kim Jong Il and his inner circle. Melvin's contributors have mapped the country's railways and power lines, and tagged thousands of anti-aircraft installations, nuclear facilities, prisons, mass graves, hydro dams, restaurants, banks, churches, temples,  hotels, and elite playgrounds.
NDP leader Darrell Dexter today promised to provide 1,000 home insulation grants for low to modest income households. This is a much better idea than Dexter's plan to subsidize carbon production by removing the provincial share of HST from home electricity bills. Here's why:
  • Insulation grants will cut the province's CO2 emissions, while the carbon subsidy will increase them.
  • Insulation grants will target homeowners most in need, while the carbon subsidy will go disproportionately to the well-off, because they use more electricity.
  • Insulation grants will create jobs for carpenters, plumbers, electricians, and local businesses, while the carbon subsidy will have little or no employment impact.
  • Insulation grants will produce permanent reductions in home heating costs, while savings from the carbon subsidy will last only as long as the tax break is in place.

Don Connolly points out that Nova Scotia has two colorful seasons. Speaking Wednesday from Marshy Hope, Pictou County, home of legendary fall foliage, the CBC Radio host described the profusion of pale greens, pinks, yellows, and maroons on display this week. Contrarian concurs. This row of Saskatoonberries, flowering at the edge of Kay MacLean's front field in Ross Ferry, is a perennial favorite....

With 10 days to go, a Liberal friend sums it up: Everyone I talk to expects an NDP  government. Everyone. They say, "Darrell's a good leader." They say, "it's his turn." I haven't heard a single person say they expect someone else to form the government. He could win a majority....

Andrew Coyne thinks BC Premier Gordon Campbell's embrace of a "real" carbon tax (i.e., one in which every dollar of income raised by taxing carbon was returned in reduced income taxes) may have won him the election. He hopes it will serve as a template for a new conservative coalition.
Others have noted the discomfort Campbell’s embrace of the carbon tax caused the NDP, under attack throughout the campaign by its traditional environmentalist allies. Less commented upon was the degree to which he was able to draw those kinds of voters to his own party. Simply put, Campbell has reinvented the conservative coalition.