Puppets ‘n Dummies | SeMeN SPeRmS SuPeR SiTe

Puppets ‘n Dummies


  • A gang of hackers known as SwagSec announced at the tail end of last week that they had hacked into Lady Gaga’s UK website and made off with a database of names and email addresses of fans. To prove their point, they published the stolen data online.
  • Ventriloquism creeps me out as it is, but these vaudeville era portraits of ventriloquists with their creepy dummies are, well, creepy. This first one is quite possibly the most unsettling thing I have ever seen. Enjoy the rest, including the random police booking photo of “The Great Lester”.
  • For decades, farmers had it relatively easy when it came to weeds infesting their soil: apply herbicides, wait for the weeds to die and grow more crops. Those salad days, alas, are coming to an end.

    A new series of studies released by Weed Science this month finds at least 21 weed species have become resistant to the popular herbicide glyphosate (sold as Monsanto’s Roundup), and a growing number survive multiple herbicides, so-called “super-weeds.” The same selection pressure creating bacteria resistant to multiple antibiotics is leading to the rapid evolution of plants that survive modern herbicides. If the trend continues, yields could drop and food costs climb as weeds grow more difficult to uproot.

  • NAMING your new bundle of joy Lucifer has been effectively banned by New Zealand’s names registrar after three parents had the odd request knocked back.

    The country’s Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages has been cracking down on mothers and fathers getting too creative with their children’s names, ruling out punctuation marks such as . (Full Stop), * (Asterisk) and / (presumably ”Slash”).

    The list of 102 names rejected in the past two years includes Baron, Bishop, Duke, General, Judge, Justice, King, Knight and Mr, all deemed too similar to titles.
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    Messiah was also turned down, as was 89, and the single letters, C, D, I and T, although Q and J were accepted after being queried.

  • RAGING pop star Roger Daltrey claims PM David Cameron does not have “the balls” to tackle mass immigration.

    The Who’s working class hero Roger Daltrey sparked a storm a fortnight ago when he blasted Labour for “screwing” Brits by opening the floodgates to foreigners.

    Yesterday he turned on the Tories, saying Mr Cameron and his team lacked the guts to deal with the issue.

    He also took a pop at leftie rocker Bono for claiming he is a socialist while dodging taxes in his homeland.

  • After getting a pie in the face, Rupert Murdoch inadvertently gets a pair of devil horns.
  • After “Dare to Dream” was put up on YouTube one of its early listeners was Jimmy Iovine, founder of Interscope records. Recognizing quality, Iovine had plans in his mind for Skepta’s track so, with help from parent company Universal, they had YouTube remove the song on copyright grounds.

    Armed with cash Interscope approached Boy Better Known, a group and record label founded in 2005 by Skepta and the team behind Dare to Dream.

    “Being in an industry where money talks, everybody involved in the ‘Dare To Dream’ project came to a conclusion to sign it to Interscope,” says Skepta.

    So who is the lucky recipient of the track? None other than Interscope giant Eminem.

  • For years, it has been a poorly-kept secret that some of the world’s largest wireless providers rely on caller ID information to verify that a call to check voicemail is made from the account holder’s mobile phone. Unfortunately, this means that if you haven’t set up your voicemail account to require a PIN for access, your messages may be vulnerable to snooping by anyone who has access to caller ID “spoofing” technology. Several companies offer caller ID spoofing services, and the tools needed to start your own spoofing operation are freely available online.
  • Last month, however, John Brennan, the White House’s top counterterrorism advisor broke this silence, telling reporters that “in the last year ‘there hasn’t been a single collateral death because of the exceptional proficiency, precision of the capabilities that we’ve been able to develop.'”

    Zero civilian casualties — during a period when there were more than 100 CIA drone strikes — sounded almost too good to be true. As it turns out, it was. According to a new report from the UK’s award-winning Bureau of Investigative Journalism, released last night, at least 45 civilians were killed in 10 strikes since August 2010. Among these, the Bureau reports that it has identified, by name, six children killed in drone strikes. More civilians are likely to have been killed in an additional 15 strikes for which precise information is not available.

  • The FBI has released its files on two famously controversial publishers, Paladin Press and Loompanics Unlimited, following a FOIA request filed by Government Attic. The files suggest that the booksellers’ huge libraries of books on drugs, guns and other ultra-libertarian issues only rarely drew the FBI’s attention.
  • A series of adverts for a range of women’s hygiene products by Summer’s Eve have sparked a massive backlash from viewers.

    The use of ‘talking’ hands of black, white and Latina women to represent female genitalia was always meant to be provocative, but have been branded racist by some.

    Hundreds of negative comments have been posted online, with some arguing that the distinctive voice-overs adhere to racial stereotypes.

    The commercials were made with the intention of promoting cleanliness, but for many women it’s the image of Summer’s Eve that needs a good scrub.

  • Seventeen people were indicted on Wednesday on charges of running a high-end prostitution ring that catered to Wall Street clients who often spent more than $10,000 in a night, authorities said.

    The ring pulled in more than $7 million over three years, Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes said at a news conference.

    “The business of high-end prostitution is enormously profitable,” Hynes said.

    The prostitution service, named High Class NY, was run 24 hours a day out of an office in Brooklyn and charged from $400 to $3,600 an hour for its services, according to the 144-count indictment. It also provided customers with cocaine and other narcotics, the indictment said.

    Hynes said clients often spent in excess of $10,000 in a single night.

    They were “all high-end customers coming from the financial markets. People with nothing but money,” he said.

  • Backers of Israel worried that a diminished Rupert Murdoch presence may mute the strongly pro-Israel voice of many of the publications he owns.
  • A bottled liter of water with a few teaspoons of bleach is proving to be a successful recipe for dwellers in the light-deprived slums of the Philippines. The simple technology is spreading sunlight in places where it has never been, and saving residents money at the same time.
  • Police in Nigeria are holding a goat on suspicion of attempted armed robbery.

    Vigilantes seized the black and white goat, saying it was an armed robber who had used black magic to transform himself into an animal to escape after trying to steal a Mazda 323.

    ‘The group of vigilante men came to report that while they were on patrol they saw some hoodlums attempting to rob a car. They pursued them.

  • The store owner quickly begins placing money in a robber’s backpack. As he does, his Chihuahua erupts into ferocious barking at the two men, who beat a hasty retreat, running out of the store with the backpack but taking less money than they could’ve gotten.

    At one point, one of the robbers even points his rifle at the diminutive but undaunted pooch, who chases the pair out of the store and down the street.

  • Pro-abortion activists from Holland who took a seaborne clinic to staunchly Catholic Poland have been forced to pull out after a fortnight of furious protests and official pressure.

    Women on Waves, a group of radical campaigners seeking to spread their doctrine of “free abortions” throughout Europe, had hoped to bypass Poland’s tough anti-abortion laws by ferrying women to international waters aboard a converted tug, the Langenort, to undergo abortions.

    Last week, however, they abandoned their efforts and left Polish waters after providing “counselling” to only 20 women. Rebecca Gomperts, a former Greenpeace activist who heads Women on Waves, refused to say whether they had performed any abortions.

    The arrival of the Langenort in the northern Polish port of Wladyslawowo provoked outrage from the Roman Catholic Church, and the vessel was met by furious demonstrators when it docked.

  • Japan’s science ministry says air above the ground about 150 kilometers from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is as radioactive as areas 50 kilometers from the source of radioactivity.

    The ministry on Wednesday released a map showing radiation levels at locations one meter above the ground in Miyagi Prefecture, north of Fukushima, based on the results of an aerial survey from June 22nd through 30th.

  • They looked like Apple products. It looked like an Apple store. It had the classic Apple store winding staircase and weird upstairs sitting area. The employees were even wearing those blue t-shirts with the chunky Apple name tags around their necks.
  • It might be among the hardest materials known, but place a diamond in a patch of sunlight and it will start to lose atoms, say a team of physicists in Australia. The rate of loss won’t significantly trouble tiara wearers or damage diamond rings, but the discovery could prove a boon for researchers working to tap diamond’s exceptional optical and electronic properties.
  • Certain species of Timema stick insects were known to reproduce asexually, with females producing young in “virgin births” without the need for egg fertilisation by males.

    The insects instead produce genetic clones of themselves.

  • A new doll, called the “Breast Milk Baby,” is slated to make a debut sometime this year in US toy stores. A sensation in Europe, the doll has already polarized many groups at odds over issues like breastfeeding in public and those who feel young girls are already growing up too fast.

    The doll comes with a halter which is worn by a young girl as she holds the baby up to a pair of rose petal “nipples” on the front. When the doll is placed near the petals, it begins to make suckling sounds.

    Naturally, when asked what they thought about a breast milk baby doll, some shoppers in NYC were astounded, even offended. But the company who makes it remains philosophical.

    “I think that it’s totally bizarre to teach a prepubescent child how to breastfeed,” said one Manhattanite woman. “Quite strange.”

  • With increasing frequency it seems agencies of the government are looking to tap into the public consciousness to gather information on everything from how you surf the Web to how they can use information generated by you to predict the future. It’s all a little creepy, really. Here we take a look at seven programs announced this year that in some cases really want to crawl into your brain to see what’s happening in the world.
  • New Yorkers have witnessed an urban solar phenomenon, with the Sun setting in alignment with the city’s skyscrapers and giving an effect fans say is reminiscent of Wiltshire’s Stonehenge. Welcome to Manhattanhenge.
  • A good journalist brings that depth of commitment to a story, along with the appropriate contextual information, public memory, and reportorial skill. When a reporter from the German magazine Der Spiegel told me in 2003 that Fox News reporters in Baghdad had borrowed sandbags from American soldiers and piled them on the roof of their hotel to stage an on-camera impression that they were reporting from a battle elsewhere, I was reminded that Murdoch’s News Corporation isn’t so interested in serious journalism.

    No large news organization in the world, in fact—at least none that’s as large as or larger than those influenced by Vladimir Putin in Russia or Silvio Berlusconi in Italy or the Communist Party in China—tries as brazenly as Murdoch’s globe-straddling News Corporation to generate and even fabricate news or to subvert good reporting of news so cynically and powerfully—and hurtfully, to both its subjects and its audiences.

  • Walter Bagdasarian was found guilty two years ago of making threats against a major presidential candidate in comments he posted on a Yahoo.com financial website after 1 a.m. on Oct. 22, 2008, as Obama’s impending victory in the race for the White House was becoming apparent. Bagdasarian told investigators he was drunk at the time.

    A divided panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned that conviction Tuesday, saying Bagdasarian’s comments were “particularly repugnant” because they endorsed violence but that a reasonable person wouldn’t have taken them as a genuine threat.

    The observation that Obama “will have a 50 cal in the head soon” and a call to “shoot the [racist slur]” weren’t violations of the law under which Bagdasarian was convicted because the statute doesn’t criminalize “predictions or exhortations to others to injure or kill the president,” said the majority opinion written by Judge Stephen Reinhardt.

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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on July 21, 2011

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