The appeal of conspiracy theories

And while we’re on the subject of conspiracy theories (via Jezebel):

Chobani—the Greek yogurt manufacturer owned by Hamdi Ulukaya—has filed a defamation lawsuit against right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and his inflammatory website InfoWars, claiming that Jones’s network (which includes a blog and YouTube channel) falsely connected the Chobani factory, which is based in Twin Falls, Idaho and makes a practice out of hiring refugees, to the sexual assault of a five-year-old girl.

The company says that Jones has repeatedly ignored requests to remove slanderous statements, which include blaming a child’s sexual assault on Chobani’s refugee employees and claiming that she was raped at knifepoint by a group of Syrian men. (A child was in fact sexually assaulted, though not raped by the legal definition, by two minors from Iraq and Sudan. The perpetrators were not refugees employed by Chobani.) InfoWars also asserted that Chobani employees were responsible for a “500 percent increase in tuberculosis in Twin Falls,” a claim with no merit.

Meanwhile, I believe Rupert Murdoch drinks the blood of virgins to stay alive. Makes as much sense as deadly yogurt companies.

Life in the solar system

From Gizmodo:

Saturn’s moon Enceladus features a warm subterranean ocean covered in ice. In an extraordinary new finding, scientists have confirmed the existence of a chemical energy source within this moon’s water that’s capable of sustaining living organisms here on Earth. Enceladus is now officially the best place beyond Earth to look for life.

Molecular hydrogen is being produced in the ocean of Enceladus, according to a new study published today in Science. The most plausible source of this hydrogen is hydrothermal reactions between hot rocks and water in the ocean beneath the moon’s icy surface. So in addition to warm water, organic molecules, and certain minerals, this moon is also producing an accessible source of energy that could conceivably support alien microbes.

Indeed, hydrothermal processes near volcanic vents are known to sustain complex ecosystems here on Earth. The new study marks an important development in our ability to assess the habitability of distant celestial objects, while setting the stage for future missions.

Hopefully, we are going to do future missions. But the way things are going, the “we” is a global “we” instead of an American “we”, since there’s an anti-science pathology in the pigmy fingered pinhead’s administration.