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Spiders Prey on Fish Everywhere Except Antarctica

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Spider Eating Fish

New scientific research shows that spiders not only enjoy bugs, but there are at least two dozen spider species that eat freshwater fish.

Remarkably, the fish they catch may be even bigger than the spiders themselves, especially in the case of spiders that can swim, say researchers documenting the spiders.

Typically, the fish spiders catch are between two to six centimeters in length, more than double the length of the spiders themselves.

Arachnologist Martin Nyffeler, of the University of Basel in Switzerland, and fish ecologist Brad Pusey, of the University of Western Australia, studied scientific papers, citizen reports and photos from around the world and collected 89 such instances of spiders eating fish.

“Our evidence suggests that fish might be an occasional prey item of substantial nutritional importance,” said zoologist Martin Nyffeler, of the University of Basel in Switzerland, who led the study.

“Fish meat is high-quality prey regarding protein content and caloric value. Feeding on fish may be particularly advantageous during the mating period when the elevated energy and protein requirements of gravid (pregnant) female spiders require increased food intake, or at times of limited availability of invertebrate prey,” he adds.

The researchers found that spiders prey for fish at the edges of shallow freshwater streams, rivers, lakes, ponds, swamps, and fens, mainly in the warmer areas of the world.

The Florida wetlands and neighboring regions are a particular hot spot for spiders to prey on fish. Although, these fish eating spiders are on every continent with the exception of Antarctica.

The spiders that prey on fish don’t use webs, they’re all in the category of hunters, which employ potent neurotoxins and enzymes to kill and then to digest fish.

“It takes a spider usually many hours to devour a fish until nothing is left but bones and scales,” Nyffeler said.

Their review was published June 18, 2014 in the journal PLOS ONE.

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Environmentalist. Consumer Tech Journalist. Science Explorer. And, a dreamer. I've been contributing informative news content since 2010. Follow me on all socials!

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Will KylieSkin Be Kylie Jenner’s Next Billion-Dollar Business?

Kylie Jenner is releasing 6 new products under a new skincare company, KylieSkin and sells out moments after release despite the online backlash. Click To Tweet

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Kylie Skin | Photo From KylieSkin

The world’s youngest self-made billionaire, Kylie Jenner, launched her new company, KylieSkin, which features a range of skin care products made and tested by the makeup mogul herself.

It’s a Barbie wonderland as Kylie Jenner threw her launch party the other night for KylieSkin and everything was adorned with pink (even the food and drinks were pink!) To top it all off, Kylie asked all her guests, which majority are Instagram and YouTube influencers, to wear pink.

In attendance were all of the youngest Jenner’s sisters and momager, Kris Jenner, except Kendall who wasn’t able to make it to the event. Also, Nikita Dragun, James Charles, Patrick Starrr, and other YouTube beauty influencers were present at the event along with many others. They spent the night roller skating and probably some drinking.

Kylie Cosmetics, who set waves in the beauty industry, made a mouth dropping success after all of her first 300,00 lip kits were sold out in minutes. Four years and a billion dollars later, Kylie Cosmetics is a brand to be reckoned with.

KylieSkin, which is entirely dedicated to skincare, includes two different types of face washes: a foaming cleanser and a walnut scrub, a vanilla-scented toner, an eye cream, a vitamin-C serum, and a moisturizer which individually doesn’t cost more than $30. Or, you can get the bundle for $125.

KylieSkin brand follows the minimalist theme of KKW (Kim Kardashian’s makeup brand) and is all wrapped up in baby pink packaging.

Though, as they say, with great clout comes opinions coming from left and right. Is that a thing or are we the only ones saying that? But anyways, KylieSkin has received major social media marketing from the Kardashian-Jenner clan and most of YouTube and Instagram’s top influencers, which most brands could only wish for. However, it also brought in a lot of mixed opinions regarding Jenner’s new products.

First of which, based on the ingredients and price point of KylieSkin, there’s nothing special to it other than it has Kylie plastered all over it. But she does nail the basics down. By purchasing the bundle, any novice (when it comes to the world of skin care) would find this useful as it contains all the essentials and a few skincare hacks from Kylie Jenner herself.

Second, the Walnut Face Scrub included in the line received heavy criticism online, accusing Kylie of not doing enough research and is only just pushing products in the name of making money.

Nut scrubs have been related to resulting more acne and irritation, but the worst part, it’s also associated with overtime skin damage as the scrub becomes too abrasive for the face and causes micro-scars that would eventually do permanent damage. For a company that’s intended to take care of your skin, this isn’t the kind of news you would want to hear.

And third, some people are pointing out that Kylie might not be the perfect face to represent the brand. With her flawless, glowing, and acne-free face, people were quick to point out that her face wasn’t a result of her skincare line. Moreover, it was more of an outcome of having tons of money since she was born where she could afford facials on a daily and a team of dermatologists at her disposal.

Through it all, Kylie didn’t bat an eye and proceeded with her launch. Watching her Instagram stories and several others, she seemed to have enjoyed the whole event as she was seen laughing, being quirky with others, all the while roller skating.

No matter how much hate people are throwing at her, diehard fans are bound to drop the dollar and might even purchase the whole bundle the moment it goes live on the website.

To make it clearer, here is Kylie’s Instagram story hours after the products went live. Obviously, a restock means she’s sold out. We’re not really surprised, though.

Based on the success of her first line of products and how it still performed the way it did despite the early backlash, KylieSkin is heading towards a very bright future. On the question, if will it be another billion-dollar business, it still depends on how her products play out with consumers and how many times a year Kylie will be launching products considering this is a whole lot different from makeup.

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Education

#CancelMyDebt Trends On Twitter As Debtors Urge Student Loan Default

Twitter erupts with #CancelMyDebt sentiments after Sen. Elizabeth Warren asked netizens to share their student loan stories. Click To Tweet

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Twitter erupts with #CancelMyDebt sentiments after Sen. Elizabeth Warren asked netizens to share their student loan stories.
Approximately, there are 45 million Americans who have outstanding student loan. Photo: mancaalberto | CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

#CancelMyDebt trends on Twitter as emotional student loan debtors took to the popular micro-blogging website their frustrations on the debts they are still paying and urged the government to pay off their student loans.

Twitter erupts with poignant posts of Americans paying off their student loans and how their debts affected their lives following their graduation. The angered netizens expressed their opinions on the tax plan that granted America’s 1% with a $1.5 trillion tax cuts while the government turns blind eyes over the student loan problem that the youth has been facing.

The apparent hashtag came after U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren encouraged students and graduates to share their stories using the #CancelMyVote hashtag to support her plan to cancel student loan debts of 95% of Americans currently paying for it. Warren’s policy to cover the student loan repayment from an additional tax on top of the top 0.1%.

“I paid off my student loans after 10 years, but it took me getting a six-figure book deal to do it. Folks shouldn’t have to hope for the equivalent of winning the lottery to have a future. #CancelMyDebt” wrote @nkjemisin on Twitter.

President Donald Trump signed the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” into law on December 2017 and have brought significant tax reforms. “For the wealthy, banks and other corporations, the tax reform package can be considered a lopsided victory given its significant and permanent tax cuts to corporate profits, investment income, estate tax, and more. Financial services companies stand to see huge gains based on the new, lower corporate rate (21%) as well as preferential tax treatment of pass-through companies. Some banks have said that their effective tax rate will drop under 21%.,” Investopedia explained.

As the current tax plan consistently accommodates the rich, student loan debtors remain in limbo as the increasing interest rates and the piling debt are crippling their financial presents and even their futures. Student loans are a form of financial aid used to help students access higher education. Student loan debt in the United States has been snowballing since 2006, rising to nearly $1.56 trillion by 2019. Shockingly, the entire total loan debt of American equals 7.5% of the country’s GDP.

There are approximately 45 million Americans who have an outstanding student loan of $37,172 on average at the time of graduation. On top of that, student loan also appears not to be evenly distributed and is disproportionately concentrated on the for-profit college sector.

Now, student loan debtors are calling for the government to default their debts. They argue that as the outstanding student loan debt totals 1.5 trillion and the tax cut equals the same, the government can afford to pay off all of student loan debts.

People tweeting #CancelMyDebt clarifies, however, that they are not asking for a loan default because they did not owe anything. They said that call was intended for the government to take actions to destroy the systems that allow student loan companies to exploit people with dreams.

“My reality is paying $1200 a month for my student debt ALONE and working 7 days a week over 4 different jobs. I’m not asking for a “hand out,” I’m asking that we as a country address the insane cost those who are not wealthy have to pay to get higher education #CancelMyDebt,” said @steeltoejilly on a Twitter post.

Another Twitter user also chimed in saying that interest hikes have ballooned her student loan debt even if she’s paying them religiously. “I have four jobs in the education field right now. I graduated in 2005 with $100,000 in student loans. After a decade of payments, undergrad debt is over $200,000 bc of interest rates. I can’t lease a car to get to work, so I walk. I don’t own a bed. #cancelmydebt.”

However, sentiments are polarized. A huge chunk of posts bearing the hashtag talks about their disagreement to Warren’s plans. Most of them argued that student loans are student’s decisions, and the government should not be burdened to pay for their obligations.

“#CancelMyDebt? Uh, no. Nobody forced you to take out student loans. Nobody forced you to major in something that won’t land you a good job. Nobody else is responsible for your debt. It’s your debt; it’s your responsibility.” Joe Walsh tweeted Wednesday.

Kurt Schlichter, a veteran, chimed in saying that Americans can serve in the military and reap the benefits of GI Bill as he did. “Well, you could have served your country and earned GI Bill benefits like I did. But you didn’t. So I’m kind of unclear why you think I owe you anything.#CancelMyDebt? Nah. How about you #PayYourOwnDebt?” /apr

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Automotive

Nissan-Renault’s Ghosn: From Hero To Zero

The once-famed Nissan leader has fallen with allegations relating to financial misconduct and dragging the company along with him. Click To Tweet

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Renault-Nissan Alliance. Photo from: Nissan-Global.com

In a time when Nissan was on the brink of declaring bankruptcy, Carlos Ghosn stepped in not only to save the company but help it to rise back as one of the world’s top car manufacturers. Today, Nissan is facing a similar financial crisis, but this time around, the Japanese carmaker had Ghosn removed from the company.

Through Ghosn’s efforts of restructuring and eventually, reintroducing innovations to Nissan, the company rose significantly within the last two decades under Ghosn’s lead. He also made the Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi agreement possible that made them one of the leading car companies in the world.

The company had a good track record. But, CNN reported last Tuesday, May 14, that Nissan posted a significant drop in profits where operating profits plunged to 45% at 318 billion yen ($2.9 billion) in the fiscal year that ended in March and revenue fell 3% to about 11.6 trillion yen ($105 billion), while vehicle sales were down 4.4% to 5.5 million.

This is “rock bottom,” Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa said during the earnings presentation.

Moreover, analysts also expect Nissan to plunge at decade-low numbers in the coming year. Nissan forecasts operating profit for the fiscal year to March 2020 would fall to 230 billion ($2.1 billion). Also, Nissan shares closed down at 3% in Tokyo.

On Friday, May 17, the Japanese carmaker proposed plans to make changes within its executive board as a reaction to Ghosn’s fallout from the company.

The firm told shareholders that they would start implementing a new board structure composed of 11 members, which 6 of whom would be external.

“With the lessons from the recent executive misconduct still fresh, Nissan resolves to rigorously pursue the separation of supervisory and executive functions,” said the firm.

Thierry Bollore, Renault’s chief executive and chairman Jean-Dominique Senard will both be included in the proposed board.

Nissan conceded to allowing Senard into the board though Bollore’s urges. The Japanese firm isn’t too happy about Senard siding with Ghosn during his arrest.

On the other hand, Nissan’s current CEO Hiroto Saikawa has also been reported to be pressured from vacating his position in the company for doubts that he is capable of turning things around for the company and his close relations with Ghosn.

Saikawa responded that he wishes to stay on the company until he sees it return to profitability and will consider the idea of stepping down “at the appropriate time.”

Additionally, Saikawa told reporters that Renault chairman Senard “has one idea in mind, which is integration or merger.” He also added that “what we’ve told Mr. Senard is this is not the right timing to discuss this matter.”

Regarding the topic of a possible merger between Renault and Nissan, the Japanese company seems to be against the idea since Nissan brings in a lot more profitable compared to the two. But, ironically, Renault holds more stake in the company.

Obviously, the Japanese brand has been struggling to manage internal structures with Ghosn leaving its ranks for multiple cases alleging financial misconduct.

Allegedly, Ghosn is accused of abusing and taking advantage of his power and position in the company to meet personal gains. Specifically, Ghosn allegedly used a Nissan subsidiary to send millions of dollars of payments to a business partner of the company abroad, which then sent money to a third company that he controlled. The actions were taken for the purpose of obtaining a “personal profit,” The New York Times reports.

Prosecutors accused Ghosn of using the method on three occasions from December 2015 to July 2018, resulting in a total of $5 million in losses to Nissan.

As of date, Ghosn has been arrested on four separate occasions including the first arrest in November on charges of underreporting his compensation. The second when he was rearrested on related charges and then a third time on suspicion that he had shifted his personal financial losses onto Nissan’s books.

However, Ghosn and his team of lawyers have consistently denied all allegations about him. In a video Ghosn posted before his fourth arrest, he told that the allegations made against him “is about a plot, this is about conspiracy, this is about backstabbing.”

Meanwhile, the French carmaker, Renault also made new allegations against Ghosn, claiming that there were “questionable and concealed practices” regarding the expenses made under Ghosn. Moreover, Renault also announced Ghosn’s resignation from its board.

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