Antimicrobial | SeMeN SPeRmS SuPeR SiTe

‘Love?! That’s soft stuff!’

✰ Girl Removes Make-up after Two Years
For the last two years, the young girl never used make-up removers, so her mother, exasperated by Bae’s behaviour, contacted a TV station and told them Bae’s incredible story. During a variety show, dermatologists managed to convince Bae Dal-mi to finally remove the layers of make-up, and after a specialized check-up they found her skin was two times older than her actual age. All because of an obsession with beauty
✰ Electric Cigarette Explodes In US Man’s Mouth
A faulty battery caused an electronic cigarette to explode in a man’s mouth, taking out some of his front teeth, a chunk of his tongue and severely burning his face, fire officials said.
✰ Seattle woman sets underwear world record
The Guinness World record was 250. Janine Keblish topped that by two pairs of underwear. Why? Keblish wanted to bring attention to a cause she’s involved with, Days for Girls. A few years ago Keblish and Celeste Mergens discovered a shameful secret on a trip to an orphanage in Kenya – a total lack of feminine hygiene products for young women. “Millions of women all over the world go without, resulting in infection and exploitation and even girls being sold into slavery. They also miss three months of education each year, just for lack of hygiene,” says Mergens. “And you wonder, how could this be happening in this day and age? The truth is, it’s taboo to talk about.”
✰ India, Bihar: Poo Highway
The high incidence of open defecation in the Indian state of Bihar is not due to a lack awareness about toilets, according to this new Water for People video. In their view, it’s more of a supply chain, marketing problem. The toilets on offer are not particularly good.
✰ $23.60 – The Most Expensive Starbucks Drink Possible (in the World)
It’s not every day that you receive a coupon for one of the priciest beverage chains in the world! Armed with my Starbucks Rewards card, I decided to take the opportunity to find out just how much money I could pour into a Trenta—Starbucks’ whopping 31 ounce cup! After about a half-hour with a laughing barista, we created the most expensive drink possible: one Java Chip Frappuccino in a Trenta cup, 16 shots of espresso, a shot of soy milk, caramel flavoring, banana puree, strawberry puree, vanilla beans, Matcha powder, protein powder, and a drizzle of caramel and mocha. Price: $23.60. The resulting beverage contains 1400mg of caffeine. According to Erowid, a widely respected drug catalog, a heavy caffeine dose is 400+mg. This drink has 3 times that. If I drank this all at once, it would put me in the hospital. Two of these would kill me.
✰ Top 10 Bizarre & Controversial Archeological Discoveries
Many strange archeological discoveries have been made in modern history. Hundreds of artifacts have been unearthed that have baffled scientists and challenged modern man’s view of history. Many of these objects have been labeled out of place artifacts or anachronisms. These archeological discoveries are always controversial and the scientific community is extremely selective in what they accept as fact. Every object on this list has been accused of being an elaborate hoax. In many cases, a conspiracy is the only explanation, without an extensive rewriting of the world’s history books. These artifacts tell a story of ancient civilizations, Pre-Columbian trans-oceanic contracts, and mysterious technological advancements. Many of these archeological discoveries challenge the scientific theory of evolution, as well as many religious beliefs.
✰ Elderly junkies find ‘freedom’ at Dutch old-age home
In a tiny fourth-floor room overlooking The Hague’s city centre, a grey-haired man carefully plugged a small pipe with a ball of cocaine, lit up and drew a deep breath. “This is real freedom,” said 65-year-old William as a billow of white smoke poured from his nostrils and wafted through his apartment at Woodstock, the only Dutch home for elderly junkies and other addicts. The apartment block, flanked by a canal and a tram line, takes a unique approach to drug abuse by helping to keep ageing homeless people off the city’s streets and out of trouble with the law. “I like it here. Here there is no police watching you,” William told AFP as he rearranged the paraphernalia of his addiction on a small table: a pipe, a lighter, a mirror with traces of cocaine lines and an old credit card. “I can do what I want to do.”
✰ NH town to vote on whether to change name of pond at bishop’s urging
Voters in a small New Hampshire town will have the final say on whether to change the controversial name of a local pond. The small pond near the middle of Mont Vernon is known as Jew Pond. Town officials say it got its name back in the 1920s because the operators of a hotel that once stood next to it were Jewish. The name recently got the attention of New Hampshire Bishop Peter Libasci. He wrote a letter to the local newspaper saying the name conveyed contempt and urged townspeople to change it. Residents will decide in the March 13 election. Some residents told WMUR-TV that they don’t find the name offensive and that it’s part of the town’s history.
✰ Exposing the Severity of the Fukushima Disaster (Video)
Fukushima has had 5 major meltdowns now, in a disaster that is making experts say that it is larger than Chernobyl. Aljazeera reported in September that the radiation emitted from Fukushima would rival or surpass Chernobyl in only the weeks following the disaster. According to Aljazeera: “Experts say that the total radiation leaked will eventually exceed the amounts released from the Chernobyl disaster that the Ukraine in April 1986. This amount would make Fukushima the worst nuclear disaster in history.” This news was from 2011, but the current news isn’t much better. After officials said they were going to perform a ‘cold shutdown’ to prevent any further issues, its now come out that the Fukushima reactor temperature now surpasses 752 degrees — whereas 100 degrees celsius was required for the cold shutdown. Tepco, the operators of the plant, say the thermometer is conveniently broken, but they have been known to conceal the truth from the public in the past.
✰ Indian Man Killed for Public Toilet Time
The fight occurred between residents of a tenement with shared facilities, a common situation in India’s densely populated financial matrix. The incident brings India’s sanitation problems and the lack of proper facilities sharply into focus. Simon Lingeree was killed last month when he got into a heated argument with Santosh Kargutkar while using a public toilet. The latter became highly impatient while waiting his turn. When Mr. Lingeree exited the toilet, he was physically assaulted. There were no weapons involved, just fists, but the young man was struck a fatal blow to the crotch. The killer quickly fled the scene and was later arrested.
✰ Marijuana Odor Overpowers Police Station
The strong odor of marijuana from the evidence room at a local police station in Florida seems to be a real problem for some whiny cops. “The biggest complaint is how strong the odor is,” said Atlantic Beach Police Commander Victor Gualillo, reports ActionNewsJax.com. All seized dope collected during busts is stored in a 200-square-foot evidence room at the station. “Anytime you store that much marijuana it’s rather pungent,” Commander Gualillo complained. But it seems you count on this bunch of overwrought weenies to dramatize the situation way beyond just the smell. They’re talking about “doing something” before “somebody gets hurt.” “I’m told there are serious health concerns,” claimed Atlantic Beach City Manager Jim Hanson about all the collected drugs in the evidence room. “There are other evidence technicians who have gotten sick,” Hanson claimed.
✰ Addict was smoking 15 joints a day
Adrian Watson, 41, was arrested by police after neighbours complained of a strong smell of gas coming from a house in Huddersfield Road, Elland. Bradford Crown Court heard how officers at first thought there may have been a leak, but after entering the property found 24 cannabis plants and growing equipment. They also found documents in the house with Watson’s name on and another address in Dewsbury Road, Elland, where they later found Watson as well as more cannabis. A total of 2.24kg of the drug was found, with a street value of around £19,000. Police experts believe there was enough cannabis to last up to 594 days, but Watson told police that his habit of 15 joints a day meant he would have got through the drug much quicker. He admitted producing cannabis for personal use.
✰ Dolphins Reported Talking Whale in Their Sleep
News has come from France that some captive-born dolphins there have been recorded “talking in their sleep” — and talking in Whale, no less, not Dolphinese. The scientists involved say this would be the first time that dolphins have been recorded mimicking sounds a significant period of time after hearing them. But there’s also the intriguing possibility that these sounds — virtually identical to sounds made by the humpback whale — may, if the dolphins are really asleep and not just resting, be direct expression of something the dolphins are dreaming.
✰ Youngsters get high on cobra venom
“The sale of drugs (like K-72 and K-76) which have cobra venom is increasing at rave parties and in discos. These drugs enhance sensation and boost energy so that revellers can dance for longer hours,” a senior officer of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) told IANS on condition of anonymity. “The sales increase a week before Valentine’s Day in Delhi and NCR (National Capital Region) and are consumed at hushed-up parties,” he added.
✰ Morgellons: Static Electricity or Moving Nano-Machines? You Decide
Contrary to what the CDC says, Morgellons is not a delusion. I have personally felt and seen my hair move by itself, I’ve had strange fibres come out of my skin, I constantly feel like there are bugs crawling over my body. I have witnessed many of my fresh organic vegetables, fruits and meat moving by itself, causing me to have to throw out the majority of the food I’ve bought. I have had to stop wearing a lot of my clothes because even those seem to be comprised of moving fibres. Some might say the fibres in the video below are moving because of static electricity, however I find that very hard to believe.
✰ Sick: Young, Undercover Cops Flirted With Students to Trick Them Into Selling Pot
Last year in three high schools in Florida, several undercover police officers posed as students. The undercover cops went to classes, became Facebook friends and flirted with the other students. One 18-year-old honor student named Justin fell in love with an attractive 25-year-old undercover cop after spending weeks sharing stories about their lives, texting and flirting with each other. One day she asked Justin if he smoked pot. Even though he didn’t smoke marijuana, the love-struck teen promised to help find some for her. Every couple of days she would text him asking if he had the marijuana. Finally, Justin was able to get it to her. She tried to give him $25 for the marijuana and he said he didn’t want the money — he got it for her as a present. A short while later, the police did a big sweep and arrest 31 students — including Justin. Almost all were charged with selling a small amount of marijuana to the undercover cops. Now Justin has a felony hanging over his head.
✰ The Disappearing Face of New York
‘During the eight years it took James and Karla Murray to complete this project, one third of the stores they featured have closed’
✰ Congrats, US Government: You’re Scaring Web Businesses Into Moving Out Of The US
The federal government has been paying lip service to the idea that it wants to encourage new businesses and startups in the US. And this is truly important to the economy, as studies have shown that almost all of the net job growth in this country is coming from internet startups. Thankfully some politicians recognize this, but the federal government seems to be going in the other direction. With the JotForm situation unfolding, where the US government shut down an entire website with no notice or explanation, people are beginning to recognize that the US is not safe for internet startups.
✰ Facebook hacking student Glenn Mangham jailed
A software development student from York who hacked into Facebook has been jailed for eight months. Glenn Mangham, 26, had earlier admitted infiltrating the social networking website between April and May 2011. Mangham, of Cornlands Road, York, had shown search engine Yahoo how it could improve security and said he wanted to do the same for Facebook. Sentencing Mangham, Judge Alistair McCreath said his actions could have been “utterly disastrous” for Facebook. Alison Saunders, from the Crown Prosecution Service, described the case as “the most extensive and flagrant incidence of social media hacking to be brought before British courts”. Prosecutor Sandip Patel rejected Mangham’s claims, saying: “He acted with determination, undoubted ingenuity and it was sophisticated, it was calculating.” Facebook spent $200,000 (£126,400) dealing with Mangham’s crime, which triggered a “concerted, time-consuming and costly investigation” by the FBI and British law enforcement, Mr Patel said.
✰ A medical study of the Haitian zombie
We hear a lot about zombies these days – in films, in music and even in philosophy – but many are unaware that in 1997 The Lancet published a medical study of three genuine Haitian zombies. The cases studies were reported by British anthropologist Roland Littlewood and Haitian doctor Chavannes Douyon and concerned three individuals identified as zombies after they had apparently passed away. The Haitian explanation for how zombies are created involves the distinction between different elements of the human being – including the body, the gwobon anj (the animating principle) and the ti-bon anj, which represents something akin to agency, awareness, and memory.
✰ Musicians Wage War Against Robots
After the release of The Jazz Singer in 1927, all bets were off for live musicians who played in movie theaters. Thanks to synchronized sound, the use of live musicians was unnecessary — and perhaps a larger sin, old-fashioned. In 1930 the American Federation of Musicians formed a new organization called the Music Defense League and launched a scathing ad campaign to fight the advance of this terrible menace known as recorded sound. The evil face of that campaign was the dastardly, maniacal robot. The Music Defense League spent over $500,000, running ads in newspapers throughout the United States and Canada. The ads pleaded with the public to demand humans play their music (be it in movie or stage theaters), rather than some cold, unseen machine.
✰ Italy confiscates $6 trillion in fake US bonds
Swiss authorities have confiscated $6 trillion in counterfeit U.S. bonds at the request of Italian prosecutors, authorities in Italy said Friday. Eight people were arrested in Italy and placed under investigation for fraud and other crimes. The bonds, carrying the false date of issue of 1934, had been transported in 2007 from Hong Kong to Zurich, where they were transferred to a Swiss trust, according to prosecutors in the southern Italian city of Potenza. Authorities said that U.S. officials had confirmed the bonds were counterfeit. Prosecutors said the fraud had not been completed, but it appeared that the suspects intended to try to sell the fake bonds to a developing nation, directly or through an intermediary bank.
✰ FBI Foils Own Terror Plot (Again)
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has once again proven that the only thing Americans need fear, is their own government, with the latest “terror attack” foiled being one entirely of their own design. USA Today reports that a suspect had been arrested by the FBI who was “en route to the U.S. Capitol allegedly to detonate a suicide bomb.” While initial reports portrayed the incident as a narrowly averted terrorist attack, CBS would report that a “high ranking source told CBS News the man was “never a real threat.”” The explosives the would-be bomber carried were provided to him by the FBI during what they described as a “lengthy and extensive operation.” The only contact the suspect had with “Al Qaeda” was with FBI officials posing as associates of the elusive, omnipresent, bearded terror conglomerate. The FBI, much like their MI5 counterparts in England, have a propensity for recruiting likely candidates from mosques they covertly run.
✰ Lawmakers riled by Google iPhone tracking
Three U.S. lawmakers urged the Federal Trade Commission to grill Google after it admitted secretly tracking millions of people’s iPhone and Mac Web browsing. Reps. Edward Markey, D-Mass., Joe Barton, R-Texas, and Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., said they want to know whether Google’s behavior “constitutes a violation” of a privacy settlement Google Inc. and the commission worked out last year. Google pledged at the time not to “misrepresent” its privacy practices to consumers. The fine for violating the agreement is $16,000 for every violation each day. Google and three other advertising companies used special computer code that tricks Apple Inc.’s Safari Web-browsing software into letting them monitor users’ Internet habits — even though Safari, the most-widely used smartphone Web browser, is designed to block such tracking by default.
✰ Virginia Poised To Enact ‘State-Sponsored Rape’ Law Forcing Women To Be Vaginally Probed Before Abortions
Simply put, it is difficult to distinguish a law requiring women to be vaginally penetrated by a long metal object from state-sponsored rape. Worse, discussions among lawmakers leave little doubt that its supporters understood just what they were trying to write into law — they just didn’t care. As an unnamed lawmaker told a fellow Virginia delegate, a woman already consented to being “vaginally penetrated when they got pregnant.”
✰ Big Greenwashing 101
John Muir must be rolling over in his grave. The organization he founded in 1892, the Sierra Club, America’s oldest and largest environmental group, have been in cahoots with the worst of the worst corporations in recent years. They’ve been paid tens of millions of dollars by the fossil fuel industry, tyrannical billionaire mayors and Wall Street in exchange for cleaning (and greening) up their public images. Not only have they acted as a green public relations firm for the bastions of wealth and power, but have also sold out frontline communities most impacted by extractive industry.
✰ Cellphone use linked to selfish behavior
Marketing professors Anastasiya Pocheptsova and Rosellina Ferraro, with graduate student, Ajay T. Abraham, conducted a series of experiments on test groups of cellphone users. The findings appear in their working paper, “The Effect of Mobile Phone Use on Prosocial Behavior.” Prosocial behavior, as defined in the study, is action intended to benefit another person or society as a whole. The researchers found that after a short period of cellphone use the subjects were less inclined to volunteer for a community service activity when asked, compared to the control-group counterparts. The cell phone users were also less persistent in solving word problems — even though they knew their answers would translate to a monetary donation to charity. The decreased focus on others held true even when participants were merely asked to draw a picture of their cellphones and think about how they used them.
✰ Poachers slaughter 200 elephants in Cameroon; ivory profits fueling regional conflicts
Poachers have slaughtered at least 200 elephants in the past five weeks in a patch of Africa where they are more dangerously endangered than anywhere else on Earth, wildlife activists said. The money made from selling elephant tusks is fueling misery throughout the continent, the International Fund for Animal Welfare warned. Many elephant calves orphaned by the recent killings have been spotted in Cameroon’s Bouba Ndjida National Park, and activists fear the animals may soon die of hunger and thirst. “Their deaths will only compound the impact of the poaching spree on the Cameroon’s threatened elephant populations,” the organization said Thursday in a statement. It is not known how many elephants remain in the West African nation. The latest figures from the International Union for Conservation of Nature estimated there were only 1,000 to 5,000 left in 2007.
✰ Let’s Kill the Internet and Start Over
The internet is broken – we need to start over … Last year, the level and ferocity of cyber-attacks on the internet reached such a horrendous level that some are now thinking the unthinkable: to let the internet wither on the vine and start up a new more robust one instead. On being asked if we should start again, many – maybe most – immediately argue that the internet is such an integral part of our social and economic fabric that even considering a change in its fundamental structure is inconceivable and rather frivolous. I was one of those. However, recently the evidence suggests that our efforts to secure the internet are becoming less and less effective, and so the idea of a radical alternative suddenly starts to look less laughable.
✰ Loop Geography as Defensive Tactic
The existence of these clusters is so little known that most people don’t realize when they’re nearing the epicenter of Fort Meade’s, even when the GPS on their car dashboard suddenly begins giving incorrect directions, trapping the driver in a series of U-turns, because the government is jamming all nearby signals. It’s an experiential trap street—an infinite loop—a deliberate cartographic error introduced into the mapping of the world so as to sow detour and digression. A kind of digital baffling, or recursive geography as state defensive tactic. I’m also curious when we might see this privatized and domesticated—gated communities, for instance, blocking the GPS navigation of their streets in the misguided belief that this will help protect them from future burglary, effectively delisting themselves from public cartographic records. Perhaps the future of neighborhood security lies in the privatized repurposing of advanced signal-jamming technology
✰ Pa. man’s Facebook ‘surfer’ page lured teens
A married father used phony Facebook profiles to pose as two different Florida surfers to solicit sexually graphic messages and photos from seven teenage girls in western Pennsylvania, and two of the girls eventually agreed to meet for sex with the surfers’ middle-aged “friend” — yet another fake persona he used, the state attorney general said Friday. William R. Ainsworth, 53, of Mars, was charged Thursday with 68 counts, including involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and multiple counts of charges that include attempted unlawful contact with a minor, possession of child pornography and criminal use of a computer.
✰ Mobile Apps Take Data Without Permission
The address book in smartphones — where some of the user’s most personal data is carried — is free for app developers to take at will, often without the phone owner’s knowledge. Companies that make many of the most popular smartphone apps for Apple and Android devices — Twitter, Foursquare and Instagram among them — routinely gather the information in personal address books on the phone and in some cases store it on their own computers. The practice came under scrutiny Wednesday by members of Congress who saw news reports that taking such data was an “industry best practice.” Apple, which approves all apps that appear in its iTunes store, addressed the controversy on Wednesday after lawmakers sent the company a letter asking how approved apps were allowed to take address book data without users’ permission. Apple’s published rules on apps expressly prohibit that practice.
✰ ‘Piggyback Bandit’ puzzles high school sports officials in Northwest
The stocky man showed up in a basketball uniform for a game at Century High School in North Dakota. Players and coaches assumed he was a fan who had come with another team, so nobody objected when he began to pitch in around the bench. “He helped lay out uniforms, got water. He even gave a couple of kids shoulder massages. Creepy stuff like that,” said Jim Haussler, activities director for the Bismarck Public School District. After the game was over, the man joined the winning team on the court and asked if he could get a piggyback ride. One bemused player gave it to him. “He makes himself appear as if he’s limited or handicapped. I think he plays an empathy card, so to speak,” Haussler said. “We didn’t realize what we were dealing with until several days later.”
✰ Paul McCartney says he’ll quit cannabis in Rolling Stone interview
Sir Paul has a self-confessed passion for marijuana. He has also been in trouble for drugs more times than bandmate John Lennon ever was, despite Lennon’s reputation as a heavy user. Sir Paul, 69, was introduced to cannabis by Bob Dylan, who was stunned to learn he was a ‘pot virgin’ – in the mid-Sixties. After that came heroin, cocaine, LSD and a range of other psychedelics which inspired some of the Beatles’ best known songs. Sir Paul’s rap sheet for drugs is almost as long as his list of hits. He was arrested for cannabis possession in Sweden and at his Scottish farm in 1972.
✰ Calif. Woman Wins Suit Over Honda Hybrid’s Mileage Claim
It says that “a Los Angeles Superior Court commissioner has awarded Heather Peters $9,867.” As was discussed last month on All Things Considered, “Peters decided to opt out of a class-action settlement that would have given her as little as $100 and awarded the attorneys $8.5 million. The 46-year-old Los Angeles resident, who is also a lawyer, decided to even the playing field by filing her suit in a small claims court, which doesn’t allow the parties to retain lawyers.” Her case: Peters showed that ads had claimed her Honda Civic hybrid would get 50 miles per gallon. In court, as Eyder previously wrote, “she came armed with hundreds of pictures of her dashboard showing that she got at best 42 miles per gallon and after a software update that number dropped to fewer than 30 miles per gallon.”
✰ Man Killed in Dog Poop Dispute
A neighborly dispute over dog poop turned deadly in the Tacony section of Philadelphia. It happened just after 4 p.m. Tuesday on the 6500 block of Torresdale Avenue. Tyrirk Harris, 27, is accused of killing his 47-year-old neighbor Franklin Manuel Santana, according to Philadelphia Police. Cops say Santana walked a couple doors down Torresdale to confront Harris over his dogs. “A German Shepherd and a Chihuahua — these dogs were running free,” said Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small. “There were dog feces on several of the neighbor’s yards. That’s what led to this particular confrontation.” Police say Harris then pulled out a 9-mm handgun and shot his neighbor several times, striking Santana in his face and chest.
✰ Anonymous Hacked Documents Reveal Law Enforcement Spied on Occupy and Shared Information with Private Intelligence Company, STRATFOR
Computer hackers known as Anonymous leaked information obtained by hacking into private intelligence firm Stratfor’s computer network. The documents – what Anonymous is calling a teaser – suggest that from at least October to November 2011 Stratfor worked with Texas law enforcement to infiltrate the Occupy movement and spy on the Deep Green Resistance movement. The document contains emails in which Stratfor employees discuss Occupy Austin and Deep Green Resistance. Stratfor “Watch Officer” Marc Lanthemann writes about receiving information on Occupy Austin and DGR from a “Texas DPS agent.” The Texas Department of Public Safety is a statewide law enforcement agency that includes an Intelligence and Counterterrorism Division.
✰ Dawn of the Drones: The Realization of the Total Surveillance State
“To be governed is to be watched, inspected, spied upon, directed, law-driven, numbered, regulated, enrolled, indoctrinated, preached at, controlled, checked, estimated, valued, censured, commanded, by creatures who have neither the right nor the wisdom nor the virtue to do so. It is, under pretext of public utility, and in the name of the general interest, to be placed under contribution, drilled, fleeced, exploited, monopolized, extorted from, squeezed, hoaxed, robbed; then, at the slightest resistance, the first word of complaint, to be repressed, fined, vilified, harassed, hunted down, abused, clubbed, disarmed, bound, choked, imprisoned, judged, condemned, shot, deported, sacrificed, sold, betrayed; and to crown all, mocked, ridiculed, derided, outraged, dishonoured. That is government; that is it’s justice; that is it’s morality.” – Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, 19th century French philosopher
✰ David Choe Takes Barbara Walters To Paint Graffiti
David Choe has received a world wind of media attention after the story broke that he is holding $200 million worth of Facebook stock after painting their offices in 2005. Barbara Walters recently met up with Choe for an interview, and to hit the streets. Check out the hilarious video.
✰ 300k farmers hope for lawsuit against Monsanto
Not only were the smaller farms concerned over how the manufactured seeds had been carried by wind and creature alike onto their own plantations, but the biggest problem perhaps was that Monsanto was filing lawsuits themselves against farmers. Monsanto went after hundreds of farmers for infringing on their patented seed after audits revealed that their farms had contained their product — as a result of routine pollination by animals and acts of nature. Unable to afford a proper defense, competing small farms have been bought out by the company in droves. As a result, Monsanto saw their profits increase by the hundreds of millions over the last few years as a result. Between 1997 and 2010, Monsanto tackled 144 organic farms with lawsuits and investigated roughly 500 plantations annually during that span with a so-called “seed police.”
✰ Is Agriculture Sucking Fresh Water Dry?
The average American uses enough water each year to fill an Olympic-sized swimming pool, and global agriculture consumes a whopping 92% of all fresh water used annually. Those are the conclusions of the most comprehensive analysis to date of global water use, which also finds that one-fifth of humankind’s water consumption flows across international borders as “virtual water”—the water needed to produce a commodity, such as meat or electronics, if the ultimate consumers were to make it themselves rather than outsource its growth or manufacture.
✰ Female Passengers Say They’re Targeted By TSA
When Ellen Terrell and her husband, Charlie, flew out of DFW Airport several months ago, Terrell says she was surprised by a question a female TSA agent asked her. “She says to me, ‘Do you play tennis?’ And I said, ‘Why?’ She said, ‘You just have such a cute figure.’” Terrell says she walked into the body scanner which creates an image that a TSA agent in another room reviews. Terrell says she tried to leave, but the female agent stopped her. “She says, ‘Wait, we didn’t get it,’” recalls Terrell, who claims the TSA agent sent her back a second time and even a third. But that wasn’t good enough. After the third time, Terrell says even the agent seemed frustrated with her co-workers in the other room. “She’s talking into her microphone and she says, ‘Guys, it is not blurry, I’m letting her go. Come on out.’” When TSA agents do a pat down on a traveler, only female agents are allowed to touch female passengers. But the TSA allows male agents to view the images of female passengers.
✰ CDC Warns Untreatable Gonorrhea is On the Way
Gonorrhea, one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases in the United States, is increasingly showing resistance to one of the last known effective antibiotic treatments, leading researchers from the Centers for Disease Control to “sound the alarm” about potentially untreatable forms of the disease. “During the past three years, the wily gonococcus has become less susceptible to our last line of antimicrobial defense, threatening our ability to cure gonorrhea,” Gail Bolan, director of the CDC’s sexually transmitted disease prevention program, wrote in The New England Journal of Medicine last week.
✰ Darpa’s Magic Plan: ‘Battlefield Illusions’ to Mess With Enemy Minds
Arthur C. Clarke once famously quipped that “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” So perhaps it was inevitable that the Pentagon’s extreme technology arm would eventually start acting like magicians — and try to create illusions on the front lines. In its new budget, unveiled on Monday, Darpa introduced a new $4 million investigation into technologies that will “manage the adversary’s sensory perception” in order to “confuse, delay, inhibit, or misdirect [his] actions.” Darpa calls the project “Battlefield Illusion.” Of course. “The current operational art of human-sensory battlefield deception is largely an ad-hoc practice,” the agency sighs as it lays out the project’s goals. But if researchers can better understand “how humans use their brains to process sensory inputs,” the military should be able to develop “auditory and visual” hallucinations that will “provide tactical advantage for our forces.”
✰ ‘Black’ hurricane names brewing swirl of dissent
Do devastating hurricanes need help from affirmative action? A member of Congress apparently thinks so, and is demanding the storms be given names that sound “black.” The congressional newspaper the Hill reported this week that Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, feels that the current names are too “lily white,” and is seeking to have better representation for names reflecting African-Americans and other ethnic groups. “All racial groups should be represented,” Lee said, according to the Hill. She hoped federal weather officials “would try to be inclusive of African-American names.” A sampling of popular names that could be used include Keisha, Jamal and Deshawn, according to the paper.

 

 

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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on February 21, 2012

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Get Prehistoric

  • But in recent days, “Operation Sony” morphed from a standard website attack into something a bit more personal, as some Anons formed a separate “Sony Recon” mission and began tracking down corporate executives, their wives, the schools their children attend, and the shops at which they buy their flowers. And the way they obtain that information can be ingenious—and disquieting.

    Gathering this sort of information is referred to as “doxing” or collecting “dox” on targets, and such data is usually collected and distributed so that others can use it “for the lulz”—amusement, legitimate protest, or harassment.
    Jack Tretton

    Public information sources, if properly collated, can supply a wealth of detail. For instance, when a Sony exec’s address was located, it was the work of a few moments on local government websites to find out what he pays in taxes, how large the house is, and who lives next door.

  • When you don‘t like what someone’s wearing you a) kindly suggest she change b) make a joke about it so she gets the hint, or c) get a posse to jump her in a bodega, beat her repeatedly, and slash her face. The girls in the following video chose option c
  • Swimming pools are one way of surviving Arizona’s sky-high temperatures, which hit triple digits in a recent uncharacteristically early burst of heat. But Dennis McClung’s pool, in the Phoenix suburb of Mesa, has been redesigned into a survivalist refuge of an entirely different sort.

    Mr. McClung has installed a subterranean garden in his pool along with a fish pond and chicken coop. The chicken droppings feed the tilapia, which swim in water that is pumped up through the blackberry, cherry tomato, bell pepper and chili plants. The ecosystem is designed to feed his family with minimal trips to the supermarket.

  • On the second floor of the downtown campus, a motley group of students listens to a lecture titled “Palliative and Curative Relief Through a Safe and Effective Herbal Medicine.” Not the sexiest of topics on the face of it, but there’s a catch: this is Oaksterdam University, and the medicine being discussed is marijuana. At “America’s first cannabis college,” in Oakland, Calif., the sallow-faced hippy-skater types that one expects to find sit beside middle-aged professionals in business attire, united in their zeal for the pungent green leaf. No one dares speak out of turn, until instructor Paul Armentano, a marijuana-policy expert, cites a news report that U.S. antidrug authorities plan to legalize pot’s active ingredient exclusively for drug companies’ use. “More stinking profits for Big Business,” mumbles a young man wearing a baseball cap. His classmates groan in agreement.
  • That’s what startup Cloud Girlfriend promises, although your friends on Facebook will never know it. The new Internet company helps guys who aren’t ready to admit, at least online, that they don’t have a significant other.

    The new service allows users to create the perfect girlfriend who will write on your Facebook wall and otherwise make her ghostly presence known through social media.

  • “More African American men are in prison or jail, on probation or parole than were enslaved in 1850, before the Civil War began,” Michelle Alexander told a standing room only house at the Pasadena Main Library this past Wednesday, the first of many jarring points she made in a riveting presentation.
  • An unexpected side-effect of the flooding in parts of Pakistan has been that millions of spiders climbed up into the trees to escape the rising flood waters.

    Because of the scale of the flooding and the fact that the water has taken so long to recede, many trees have become cocooned in spiders webs. People in this part of Sindh have never seen this phenonemon before – but they also report that there are now less mosquitos than they would expect, given the amoungt of stagnant, standing water that is around.

  • Kamila Remisova Vesinova and her team of researchers from the Czech Archeological Society believe they have unearthed the remains of an early homosexual man. The remains date from around 2900-2500 B.C., on the outskirts of Prague.

    That claim stems from the fact the 5,000-year old skeleton was buried in a manner reserved for women in the Corded Ware culture: its head was pointed east rather than west, and its remains were surrounded by domestic jugs rather than by hammers, flint knives and weapons that typically accompany male remains.

    “From history and ethnology, we know that people from this period took funeral rites very seriously so it is highly unlikely that this positioning was a mistake,” Vesinova said at a press conference. “Far more likely is that he was a man with a different sexual orientation, homosexual or transsexual.”

  • Embryonic stem cells from mice have been transformed into a rudimentary eye, raising hopes of growing parts of the human eye to investigate and treat blindness
  • The link between media exposure and adolescent emotional health continues to be a hot research area. In a new study, researchers found that teens who spend more time listening to music, rather than reading books, are more likely to be depressed.
  • Are we about to start going backwards, to a pre-antibiotic era in which things like hip replacements, chemotherapy and intensive care are simply impossible? It’s a big enough fear for the World Health Organization to devote this year’s World Health Day on April 7 to antimicrobial resistance in a bid to safeguard these drugs for future generations.

    “Modern medicine can’t function without effective antibiotics,” says Derek Butler, chairman of the MRSA Action UK charity for which the Owens are raising money. “If we lose these magic bullets, medicine will be set back over 80 years.

  • With all sorts of the funding cuts hitting orchestras during the recent recession, there is still one aspect of classical music that local governments find valuable — the music’s unfailing ability to disperse loitering teenagers from public areas.

    Whether its Handel piped into New York’s Port Authority or Tchaikovsky at a public library in London, the sound of classical music is apparently so repellent to teenagers that it sends them scurrying away like frightened mice. Private institutions also find it useful: chains such as McDonald’s and 7-Eleven, not to mention countless shopping malls around the world, have relied on classical music to shoo away potentially troublesome kids.

  • In Japan, rescue teams are continuing to search for the bodies of those killed by the earthquake and tsunami.
    Twelve days on, just over 9,000 people are now known to have died but more than 13,000 others are still missing and nearly 270,000 people have lost their homes or been forced out by contamination.
  • A pill to enhance moral behaviour, a treatment for racist thoughts, a therapy to increase your empathy for people in other countries – these may sound like the stuff of science fiction but with medicine getting closer to altering our moral state, society should be preparing for the consequences, according to a book that reviews scientific developments in the field.
  • A massive fight at an East St. Louis nightclub involving dozens of people was caught on camera. At least one man, a security guard, was shot. Now police are trying to identify everyone in the video to determine who was hurt, who was responsible, and who broke the law.

    One man was body slammed to the ground by what appears to be a security guard. Another man was blindsided by a punch. And then, More.. just seconds later, there’s a gunshot. The bullet, apparently fired by a security guard, hits another guard in the hand.

  • According to one leading anarchist protester, plans are being drawn up for a demonstration using “shock and awe” tactics to disrupt Prince William’s marriage to Kate Middleton on April 29.

    Charlie Veitch, a former City banker who was made redundant during the financial crisis, heads a group of colorful protesters called the “Love Police Academy.” He says that anarchists will put on a “disruption spectacular.”

  • The ads are for chunks of meteorites, bits of asteroids that have fallen from the sky and are as prized by scientists as they are by collectors. As more meteorites have been discovered in recent years, interest in them has flourished and an illegal sales market has boomed — much to the dismay of the people who want to study them and the countries that consider them national treasures.

    “It’s a black market,” said Ralph P. Harvey, a geologist at Case Western Reserve University who directs the federal search for meteorites in Antarctica. “It’s as organized as any drug trade and just as illegal.”

  • The Former CIA Counter-terrorism analyst Michael Scheuer strongly opposed the Obama’s administration actions in Libya on CNN this morning. Scheuer believes that there isn’t a strong case for America’s intervention especially at a time when the country hasn’t even recovered from the recession. Also, Scheuer had doubts if the rebels that we are arming would really be any better than the Gadaffi regime: “I’m not sure that that the opposition, if it takes power, is going to be much better than was Gadaffi.” Moreover, Scheuer argues that the US involvement in Libya would serve as a recruitment tool for extremists. “In the muslim world, this is Americans killing Muslims again, and it looks like its for oil.”
  • So, with heavy heart, the proprietor, Matthew Maher, 70, climbed up a small ladder. With curatorial care, he took down the two-dozen dust-cocooned wishbones dangling on an old gas lamp above the storied bar counter. He removed the clouds of gray from each bone. Then he placed every one of the bones, save for those that crumbled at his touch, back onto the gas lamp — where, in the context of this dark and wonderful establishment, they are not merely the scrap remains of poultry, but holy relics.
  • The chief of police for a small New Mexico town who was arrested for allegedly aiding in a gun running operation covered up the fact that his co-defendants Manuel Ortega, Ignacio Villalobos and village Councilman Jose Blas Gutierrez “were drinking and partying with 9 or 10 young girls, some of whom were in high school,” federal prosecutors said in a recent court filing.
  • The scientists have successfully introduced human genes into 300 dairy cows to produce milk with the same properties as human breast milk.

    Human milk contains high quantities of key nutrients that can help to boost the immune system of babies and reduce the risk of infections.

  • The Obama administration is urging Congress not to adopt legislation that would impose constitutional safeguards on Americans’ e-mail stored in the cloud.
  • About 70 percent of the 400 fuel rods in the No. 1 reactor at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant are damaged, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) has revealed.

    In addition, some 30 percent of the 548 fuel rods in the No. 2 reactor core and 25 percent of those in the No. 3 reactor core are also thought to be damaged, the power company stated on April 6. The figures are based on analysis of radiation data collected from the side of the reactor pressure vessel between the March 11 earthquake and tsunami and March 15.

  • Unlike the US, there isn’t even a formal process with a judge rubber stamping the requests. Instead, the police ask, and Nominet is compelled to suspend the domain. In fact, some law enforcement officials are claiming that if Nominet refused their requests, then it would automatically become liable. In other words, police have a fantastic tool for censorship of any website if they want to use it that way.
  • Screen shots of computers in movies
  • Entire country loses internet for five hours after woman, 75, slices through cable while scavenging for copper

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