Beastie Boys | SeMeN SPeRmS SuPeR SiTe

Rick Rubin & The Beastie Boys Radio City Music Hall

File under Music, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on April 11, 2015

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Beastie Boys x Stromboli Pizza

File under SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on October 16, 2014

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Beastie Boys & Rick Rubin Radio City Music Hall Opening for Madonna 1985

File under Music, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on November 27, 2013

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Super Zeros

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1970s NY Graffiti Artists Still Have Urge to Tag
Witten and a generation of urban latchkey kids who spray-painted their initials all over Manhattan in the 1970s and ’80s and landed in the city’s street art scene are coming of age — middle age, that is.
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1% Rappers
#20 Rick Ross – Net Worth $25 Million #19 Tie between T-Pain and T.I – Net Worth $30 Million #18 Nelly – Net Worth $55 Million #17 Busta Rhymes – Net Worth $60 Million #16 Ludacris – Net Worth $65 Million #15 Beastie Boys – Net Worth $75 Million Each #14 Timbaland – Net Worth $75 Million #13 Pharrell Williams – Net Worth $77.5 Million #12 Tie between LL Cool J and Akon – Net Worth $80 Million #11 Kanye West – Net Worth $90 Million #10 Lil Wayne – Net Worth $95 Million #9 Ice Cube – Net Worth $100 Million #8 Snoop Dogg – Net Worth $110 Million #7 Birdman – Net Worth $115 Million #6 Eminem – Net Worth $120 Million #5 50 Cent – Net Worth $250 Million #4 Dr. Dre – Net Worth $260 Million #3 Master P – Net Worth $350 Million #2 Jay-Z – Net Worth $475 Million #1 Diddy – Net Worth $500 Million
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It’s raining heroin on Indo-Pak border
On an average, more than a kilogram of heroin was seized every day on the Indo-Pak border adjoining Punjab for the first six months of this year. Records with the Border Security Force (BSF) show that in the first half of 2012, the force has seized a record 197 kilograms of heroin worth nearly Rs 1,000 crore. This is nearly three times more than 68 kgs seized last year. It is also the highest amount of the drug seized in the past five years.
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The Shining finally gets a second movie
Warner Bros have confirmed that they are working on a prequel to the Jack Nicholson thriller – which contained the famous line, “Heeere’s Johnny.”
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Heroin drug targets middle school students
Cheese is the slang name for a mixture of black tar heroin and Tylenol PM. The substances are combined and come out looking much like parmesan cheese. The resulting product is sold for as little as $2 per hit. Kids in the Dallas-area are buying “cheese” with their lunch money, according to media reports. They’re snorting the stuff up their noses – often at school – and dying in alarming numbers, according to the Dallas County medical office. A recent study by the Dallas Independent School district determined that more than 5,000 kids have tried cheese. More than two dozen have died of overdoses. Most, like Mariela, first take the drug in middle school. That’s shocking. Middle school students are being targeted by drug dealers and turned into heroin addicts before they reach high school.
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TSA Checkpoints Exposed: Journalist Tracked, Targeted and Harassed for Filming
Luke Rudkowski of WeAreChange breaks down WRC Correspondent Julio Rausseo’s experience at the Chicago Union Station, 1 week after releasing a video exposing TSA checkpoints being setup there.
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The Aleppo Codex Mystery
One day this spring, on the condition that I not reveal any details of its location nor the stringent security measures in place to protect its contents, I entered a hidden vault at the Israel Museum and gazed upon the Aleppo Codex — the oldest, most complete, most accurate text of the Hebrew Bible. The story of how it arrived here, in Jerusalem, is a tale of ancient fears and modern prejudices, one that touches on one of the rawest nerves in Israeli society: the clash of cultures between Jews from Arab countries and the European Jews, or Ashkenazim, who controlled the country during its formative years. And the story of how some 200 pages of the codex went missing — and to this day remain the object of searches carried out around the globe by biblical scholars, private investigators, shadowy businessmen and the Mossad, Israel’s intelligence agency — is one of the great mysteries in Jewish history.
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Just a face in a crowd? Scans pick up ID, personal data
As you scan the face on that giant billboard, it may just be scanning your face right back. Increasingly sophisticated digital facial-recognition technology is opening new possibilities in business, marketing, advertising and law enforcement while exacerbating fears about the loss of privacy and the violation of civil liberties. Businesses foresee a day when signs and billboards with face-recognition technology can instantly scan your face and track what other ads you’ve seen recently, adjust their message to your tastes and buying history and even track your birthday or recent home purchase. The FBI and other U.S. law enforcement agencies already are exploring facial-recognition tools to track suspects, quickly single out dangerous people in a crowd or match a grainy security-camera image against a vast database to look for matches.
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Palestinians Rip Romney’s ‘Racist’ Praise for Israel – Candidate again steps in it, says Israel has better ‘culture’ for business
Mitt Romney offended Palestinians again today, saying that Israel was more prosperous than Palestine because of its superior culture and the will of God. “You notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality” between Israel and Palestine, Romney said at a fundraiser in Jerusalem today, citing each nation’s per-capita GDP, the AP reports. He went on to say that in considering Israel’s accomplishments “I recognize the power of at least culture and a few other things” including the “hand of providence.”
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30 Global News Events The Batman Massacre Allows The American Media To Ignore
The essence of the infor­ma­tion war is the timely inter­jec­tion, dis­tor­tion or omis­sion of news events. Reports can min­i­mize, omit or basi­cally bury key news sto­ries that require analy­sis while mag­ni­fy­ing oth­ers which are of lesser impor­tance to the keen, ana­lyt­i­cal mind. While the Bat­man mas­sacre is tragic, the buzz in the so called alter­na­tive media cir­cle is cen­tered around the litany of ongo­ing sto­ries that will be sti­fled in the week to come by the main­stream media’s focus on the Aurora, CO shoot­ing. Beyond that, the analy­sis you read here is not all pre­sented as 100% fact, some con­clu­sions are pre­sented in light of other evi­dence, and where noted, some are spec­u­la­tive based on edu­cated the­ory. In this era of total media bom­bard­ment, to the point of over­load, some events have to be con­sid­ered beyond just what is con­firmed in print or on video and must be eval­u­ated in the full con­text of pos­si­ble human behav­ior.
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Feds Sue Telecom for Fighting Warrantless Search
The Justice Department is suing a telecommunications company for challenging a request from the Federal Bureau of Investigation for customer information — despite the fact that the law authorizing the request explicitly permits such challenges. According to documents provided by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), which is representing the telecom, the company (whose name is one of the many redacted details in the documents) received a national security letter (NSL) in 2011. An NSL is essentially a self-issued search warrant whereby the FBI bypasses the Fourth Amendment and demands information about an individual without bothering to obtain a judge’s consent — and forces the recipient of the letter to keep mum about it because disclosure would allegedly harm national security. NSLs were employed somewhat sparingly prior to 2001 but became widely used — and abused, as the Justice Department’s inspector general reported in 2007 — after the misnamed Patriot Act loosened the require
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Feeling bad about your life? Well, at least you’re not this guy!
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American fast food diet unleashes disease epidemic sweeping across Asia
Though increasingly looked down upon here in the U.S. as a sign of slothfulness and low socioeconomic status, routine fast food consumption in some parts of the world is actually considered to be culturally desirable. But as foreigners progressively adopt the American fast-food lifestyle in place of their own native foods, rates of chronic disease are skyrocketing, including in East and Southeast Asia where diabetes and heart disease rates are off the charts. According to a recent study published in the journal Circulation, globalization continues to usher U.S.-style fast food into East Asian countries like Singapore, Malaysia, and Cambodia, where natives, especially those from the younger generations, are quickly adopting things like hamburgers and fries in place of their traditional fare. And based on the data, this Western fast food craze is responsible for a significant uptick in cases of diabetes and heart disease.
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Scientists Read Monkeys’ Minds, See What They’re Planning to Do Before They Do it
Neurologists working with monkeys at Washington University in St. Louis to decode brain activity have stumbled upon a rather surprising result. While working to demonstrate that multiple parameters can be seen in the firing rate of a single neuron (and that certain parameters are embedded in neurons only if they are needed to solve the immediate task), they also found that they could read their monkeys’ minds. This isn’t exactly ESP, but it is really interesting. The researchers came to find out that by analyzing the activity of large populations of neurons, they could discover what actions the monkeys were planning before they made a single motor movement. By monitoring neural activity, the researchers could essentially see what the monkey was thinking about doing next.
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CIA “Manages” Drug Trade, Mexican Official Says
In a recent interview, Chihuahua state spokesman Guillermo Terrazas Villanueva told Al Jazeera that the CIA and other international “security” outfits “don’t fight drug traffickers.” Instead, Villanueva argued, they try to control and manage the illegal drug market for their own benefit. “It’s like pest control companies, they only control,” Villanueva told the Qatar-based media outlet last month at his office in Juarez. “If you finish off the pests, you are out of a job. If they finish the drug business, they finish their jobs.” Another Mexican official, apparently a mid-level officer with Mexico’s equivalent of the U.S. Department of “Homeland Security,” echoed those remarks, saying he knew that the allegations against the CIA were correct based on talks with American agents in Mexico. “It’s true, they want to control it,” the official told Al Jazeera on condition of anonymity.
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Is There Too Much Pressure to Engage in Crazy, Kinky Sex?
What those trying to aggressively market an ever more “exotic sex life” fail to realize is that sexual preferences aren’t shaped by artifice. Buying a leather slapper won’t suddenly give you a penchant for spanking—and let’s face it, if you were really into the idea in the first place, you probably would have gone DIY and just picked up a hairbrush long before now. Making people feel shitty about their vanilla-ness is mainly a capitalist calculation. As any marketing exec knows, the moment people become satisfied is the moment they stop buying stuff.
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Black Hat presentation shows iris-scanning breach
A research team from Universidad Autonoma de Madrid and West Virginia University have troubling findings for those who think iris scanning is one of the safest methods of biometric security. Their reverse-engineered, “replicated eye” image was able to bypass iris scanning, fooled into thinking the synthetic image was real and correct. Javier Galbally and his team printed out synthetic images of irises taken from codes of real irises stored in security databases to test iris-scanning vulnerabilities. An iris code is the data stored by recognition systems when they scan a person’s eye. This is information that the researchers could replicate in their synthetic images. A commercial iris system only looks for the iris code and not an actual eye, Galbally noted. He and his team tested their fake irises against a leading commercial-recognition system. In 80 percent of attempts, the scanner believed that the attempt was a real eye.
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Was the “Batman Shooting” a Ritualistic Murder Carried Out by Mind Controlled Patsy?
Shooter James Holmes even went as far as to take Vicodin, a drug found in Heath Ledger at the time of his death. Vicodin is a powerful pain-killer with morphine-like effects that is used in mind control to “dull out” victims. Is there some kind of ritualistic connection between The Dark Knight, the sacrificial death of Heath Ledger and this new installment of a Batman movie that was “launched” with a mass murder? Is there a reason why this mass-murder, which occurred during the midnight screening of a movie called Dark Knight RISING took place in a city called Aurora, the name Roman goddess of dawn (dawn being the time where the sun begins to rise)? Another interesting fact: Aurora is considered to be the mother of the morning star, also know as the Light Bringer, or Lucifer.
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Social Scientists Might Gain Access to Facebook’s Data on User Behavior
Social scientists hungry for Facebook’s data may be about to get a taste of it. Nature has learned that the social-networking website is considering giving researchers limited access to the petabytes of data that it has amassed on the preferences and behaviour of its almost one billion users. Outsiders will not get a free run of the data, but the move could quell criticism from social scientists who have complained that the company’s own research on its users cannot be verified. Facebook’s in-house scientists have been involved in publishing more than 30 papers since 2009, covering topics from what drives the spread of information and ideas to the relationship between social-networking activity and loneliness. However, because the company fears breaching its users’ privacy, it does not release the underlying raw data.
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With A Chemical Injection, Blind Mice Can See
Two of the most common causes of blindness are retinitis pigmentosa, a genetic disease, and macular degeneration, an age-related disorder. Both are characterized by damage to the rod and cone cells in the retina, which robs the eye of its photoreceptors. Treatments for these forms of blindness focuses on restoring the retina’s abilities, and we’ve seen a few examples — stem cell injections, implantations of light-sensitive compounds using viruses, and a whole host of electronic devices and artificial retinas. A chemical called AAQ can also make these damaged cells sensitive to light again, and it wouldn’t require any foreign substances or stem cells.
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How Much Is Your Gmail Account Worth?
The cloud backup guys over at Backupify put together a calculator to help folks estimate the value of their cloud-based Google Gmail web mail accounts. So what’s the average account’s worth? $3,588.85, Backupify’s Jay Garmon writes in a blog post. That’s the value of the time invested in the average Gmail account, given how many emails the average Gmail user has written (5,768), how long it takes to write the average email (one minute, 43 seconds), and the most recent U.S. Depart of Labor statistics on average annual salary ($45,230). In other words, if the average Gmail user were paid to recreate all the Gmail messages he or she’s ever written, it would cost $3,588.85.
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Honey buns sweeten life for Florida prisoners
They are a lowly, sturdy food designed for desperate cravings and vending machine convenience. They can endure weeks of neglect and even a mild mashing in a coat pocket or backpack. They are, it should come as no surprise, especially beloved by a similarly hardy but disrespected population: Florida’s prison inmates. Inmates in the Florida prison system buy 270,000 honey buns a month. Across the state, they sell more than tobacco, envelopes and cans of Coke. And they’re just as popular among Tampa Bay’s county jails. In Pasco’s Land O’Lakes Detention Center, they’re outsold only by freeze-dried coffee and ramen noodles. Not only that, these honey buns — so puffy! — have taken on lives of their own among the criminal class: as currency for trades, as bribes for favors, as relievers for stress and substitutes for addiction. They’ve become birthday cakes, hooch wines, last meals — even ingredients in a massive tax fraud. Thanks Jasmine
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Texas woman jailed for stabbing husband: Was it Facebook or PCP use?
Rhonda Roshell Washington, 33, told police her husband was high on PCP when they got into an argument about his drug use at their home in Bryan early Thursday, the Bryan-College Station paper reports. The fight turned physical, she said, and she jabbed him in the hand with her keys. Her husband, however, claimed she became upset about something on his Facebook page and chased him with a knife, stabbing him in the hand.
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UK’s largest skateboard unveiled ahead of Olympics
This isn’t a story about a skateboarding giant, the UK’s largest skateboard has been created to mark the fact two thirds of children think the Olympics will only be worth watching when more extreme sports like skateboarding are included, obviously. Measuring a staggering seven metres in length, two and half metres in width and at a metre high, the oversized board weighs as much as a baby African elephant – so any ‘ollies’ or ‘kick flips’ are probably out of the question.
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The Joke’s on You
Our lazy embrace of Stewart and Colbert is a testament to our own impoverished comic standards. We have come to accept coy mockery as genuine subversion and snarky mimesis as originality. It would be more accurate to describe our golden age of political comedy as the peak output of a lucrative corporate plantation whose chief export is a cheap and powerful opiate for progressive angst and rage.
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Google: we failed to delete all Streetview data
Despite repeated assurances in public and to the Information Commissioner, Google has admitted that it did not in fact delete all the data, which could include passwords and emails, collected over open WiFi networks by its Streetview mapping cars in 2010 in a number of countries around the world. The news means that Britain’s recently reopened investigation into the so-called WiFi snooping could be bolstered by an opportunity to re-examine evidence that the ICO had asked to be destroyed. The ICO has demanded to examine the data “immediately” to look for evidence that it is in fact more extensive than Google had originally claimed, as authorities in America had discovered for data collected there.
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Tim Geithner Admits Banks Bailed Out With Rigged Libor, Costing Taxpayers Huge Amount
But he also said that, months later, when it came time to set bailout terms for the Too Big To Fail Set, the government just had no other choice but to use Libor. Sure, that’s one way to look at it. Another, less charitable way to look at it is that the Fed was fully aware that Libor was being manipulated lower, and was fine charging an artificially low rate to lend money to banks and to AIG, in what amounted to yet another kind of bailout. Why make life harder for them, right? They had enough problems dealing with the crisis they had created. Raising red flags about Libor might have only made the crisis worse, making it harder for banks to borrow money. But in the process, the government left untold mountains of cash on the table for U.S. taxpayers. Even if Libor was only manipulated a tiny bit lower, these small breaks add up.
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Woman Claims Watching 3D Film Made Her Pregnant
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What Terrorizes Americans Most: Guns or Sexual Freedom?
America treats sex, not violence, as the biggest threat to families and the nation, starting with Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) ratings bestowing action flicks that brutalize half-naked nymphets a PG-13, but anything suggesting female pleasure the deathly NC-17, as happened with the marital cunnilingus scene between Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams in Blue Valentine. A common argument against gay marriage or condom commercials is, “What would I say to my kids,” as if sex talk destroys childhood innocence.
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19 Examples Of How Control Freaks Are Killing America With Their Completely Ridiculous Regulations
The control freaks are winning, and they are absolutely killing America. Our founding fathers intended to establish a nation where Americans would be free to pursue “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” in an environment where freedom was maximized and government interference was minimized. Unfortunately, our nation has turned away from those principles and is now running 180 degrees in the other direction. For some reason, our political system tends to attract psychotic control freaks that want to micromanage our lives and make most of our decisions for us. These control freaks are actually convinced that freedom and liberty are “dangerous” and that there should be a rule or a regulation for just about everything. This is not just happening on the federal level either. The truth is that the control freaks are often the worst on the local level. When you add up the red tape on all levels of government, we literally have millions of laws, rules and regulations in America
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Iran nuclear energy facility hit with malware that plays AC/DC at full volume
An email to F-Secure — allegedly sent from an AEOI scientist — detailed the attack, noting that the malware has shut down some of the facility’s automated processes. The rather vague wording of the email leaves a few unanswered questions as to just what parts of the AEOI are in danger, but one piece of information was very clear: The insidious software prompted several of the group’s computers to begin playing the song “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC in the middle of the night, and at full volume.
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600-year-old linen bras found in Austrian castle
A revolutionary discovery is rewriting the history of underwear: Some 600 years ago, women wore bras. The University of Innsbruck said Wednesday that archeologists found four linen bras dating from the Middle Ages in an Austrian castle. Fashion experts describe the find as surprising because the bra had commonly been thought to be only little more than 100 years old as women abandoned the tight corset.
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Skydiver Fearless Felix jumps from 18 miles up
On Wednesday, Baumgartner took another stratospheric leap, this time from an altitude of more than 18 miles — an estimated 96,640 feet, nearly three times higher than cruising jetliners. He landed safely near Roswell, N.M. His top speed was an estimated 536 mph, said Brian Utley, an official observer on site. It’s the second test jump for Baumgartner from such extreme heights and a personal best. He’s aiming for a record-breaking jump from 125,000 feet, or 23 miles, in another month. He hopes to go supersonic then, breaking the speed of sound with just his body.
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62,000 pennies used to pay off mortgage
What started out as a joke 35 years ago ended with a Massachusetts man paying off his mortgage using 62,000 pennies. “I’ve never saved anything other than pennies. And it started out as a whim. You know, a penny for the mortgage,” Thomas Daigle told NBC affiliate WHDH-TV of Boston. Daigle, from Milford, Mass., recalled how, after signing the mortgage papers 35 years ago, he found a penny on the ground. He and his wife then joked about collecting pennies to pay off the loan — and the rest is history. Over the next 35 years, Daigle would roll pennies, 50 cents at a time. His bank found out the hard way just how much work that was — it reportedly took tellers two days to unroll the penny cases.
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More odd-colored lobsters turning up in the catch – but why?
Reports of odd-colored lobsters used to be rare in the lobster fishing grounds of New England and Atlantic Canada. Normal lobsters are a mottled greenish-brown. But in recent years, accounts of bright blue, orange, yellow, calico, white and even split lobsters – one color on one side, another on the other – have jumped. It’s now common to hear several stories a month of a lobsterman bringing one of the quirky crustaceans to shore.
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Did the NYPD Break International Law in Suppressing Protest?
A report by a group of civil and human rights attorneys released Wednesday morning paints the clearest picture yet of the New York City police department’s aggressive tactics and over-policing, all of which resulted in the systemic suppression of the basic rights of Occupy protesters. The report, which chronicles events from late September 2011 up to July of 2012, extensively documents numerous ways in which the NYPD acted with excessive force, attempted to intimidate and harass members of the press, expelled activists from public space due to the content of their speech, and ultimately concludes that authorities broke international law in their handling of Occupy Wall Street.
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Mayor Bloomberg Says Cops Should Go On Strike Until Americans Give Up Their Guns
In 2008, ten times more civilians regular people were killed by cops than cops were killed by perps. In 2011, 72 cops were shot and killed in the entire U.S.; in L.A. County alone, cops shot and killed 54 suspects the same year–22 percent of those people were unarmed. As Scott Reeder reported at Reason this morning, “Farmers, ranchers, commercial fishermen, loggers, garbage collectors, truck drivers, construction workers, pilots, steel workers, roofers, and others are far more likely to face death on the jobs than police or firefighters, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.” And as Choire Sicha wrote earlier this year, “2008 was the ten-year low for police officers being killed, and 2012 is, so far, year-to-date, down 49% from last year.”
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Batman Shooter James Holmes on Hardcore Pharmaceutical Drugs
Like virtually all massacre shooters before him, the notorious Batman shooter James Holmes is now reported to have been taking hardcore pharmaceutical drugs. In Holmes’ case, they happen to be the very same drugs that ultimately led to the early death of actor Heath Ledger. With a fix for ‘altering his state of mind’, the ‘Batman shooter’ was heavily hooked on the prescription painkiller Vicodin. Holmes even reportedly dosed up on a pharmaceutical cocktail just before the shooting. Side effects of Vicodin use, even at ‘recommended’ levels which Holmes likely far exceeded, include ‘altered mental states’ and ‘unusual thoughts or behavior’.
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The New Domain Awareness System Will Be Used To Track Potential Criminals And Terrorists
The New York Police Department will soon launch an all-seeing “Domain Awareness System” that combines several streams of information to track both criminals and potential terrorists. New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly says the city developed the software with Microsoft. Kelly says the program combines city-wide video surveillance with law enforcement databases. He says it will be officially unveiled by New York’s mayor as soon as next week.
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Two Texas Pre-Teens Create a Fake Facebook Account, Texas Cops Charge Them With Felonies and Lock Them Up
According to the Student Press Law Center, which investigated the girls’ arrest, officials in Hood County, Texas, are refusing to say whether the girls (who were arrested July 16) are still being detained. The center’s reporting suggests that the girls have been behind bars for more than a week for the crime of pranking a fellow student on Facebook
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File under Comedy, Culture, Fashion, Graffiti, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG, Sex, Skateboarding

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on July 30, 2012

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Sex A Go Go

  • Meet Patrick Brooks.

    The 21-year-old Californian was arrested today for burglary, forgery, and receiving stolen property. Not to mention violating parole from a prior case.

    Collared by the Redding Police Department, Brooks is being held without bail in the Shasta County lockup. Where that forehead greeting will no doubt endear him to fellow inmates.

  • “What makes this discovery especially significant is that the 2X background radioactivity detected in these peaches was likely significantly attenuated by their water content; when eaten the exposure rate may be significantly higher. Even worse, it is likely that the detected radioactivity is from a longer half life radionuclide; which when eaten, would irradiate a person from the inside out for potential years to come.”
  • A Monterey Park assemblyman is accusing a Westwood food delivery service of denigrating Asians by using the name Ching Chong Ling Long Gourmet Take-out.

    The Pasadena Star-News reports the name is a reference to a racist rant posted to YouTube by former UCLA student Alexandra Wallace.

    In the video, Wallace said “ching chong ling long” in her imitation of how Asians sound.

    On its website, the takeout service calls itself “C2L2 Gourmet delivery” and says the best way to combat intolerance is through positive cultural experiences and humor.

  • When Danielle Steinmann’s daughter got an email saying she’d been chosen for a 2-day photo shoot with Teen Vogue magazine, she was excited for the 17 year old.

    “At first I was like go for it!” said Steinmann.

    Then she read the e-mails her daughter received after posting a profile on a modeling website.

    “They just wanted her specific size, hair color and whatnot,” said Steinmann.

    But they also wanted a lot of personal information including her phone number, street address, and date of birth.

    “That’s when this whole thing with payment started,” said Steinmann.

    The email stated the girl would receive a check she should cash. They asked her to keep $500 and wire the remaining amount to a supervisor in Ohio.

    When the check arrived, it was for $2900 from an insurance company in Utah.

  • An Austrian atheist has won the right to be shown on his driving-licence photo wearing a pasta strainer as “religious headgear”.

    Niko Alm first applied for the licence three years ago after reading that headgear was allowed in official pictures only for confessional reasons.

    Mr Alm said the sieve was a requirement of his religion, pastafarianism.

  • Black men are half as likely to die at any given time if they’re in prison than if they aren’t, suggests a new study of North Carolina inmates.

    The black prisoners seemed to be especially protected against alcohol- and drug-related deaths, as well as lethal accidents and certain chronic diseases.

    But that pattern didn’t hold for white men, who on the whole were slightly more likely to die in prison than outside, according to findings published in Annals of Epidemiology.

  • On June 7, 2011, Earth-orbiting satellites detected a flash of X-rays coming from the western edge of the solar disk. Registering only “M” (for medium) on the Richter scale of solar flares, the blast at first appeared to be a run-of-the-mill eruption–that is, until researchers looked at the movies.

    “We’d never seen anything like it,” says Alex Young, a solar physicist at the Goddard Space Flight Center. “Half of the sun appeared to be blowing itself to bits.”

    “In terms of raw power, this really was just a medium-sized eruption,” says Young, “but it had a uniquely dramatic appearance caused by all the inky-dark material. We don’t usually see that.”

    Solar physicist Angelos Vourlidas of the Naval Research Lab in Washington DC calls it a case of “dark fireworks.”

  • And so began my quest to hire a rapist. I started by reviewing hustlers’ profiles through escort websites, but I was totally turned off. Even when they said they only serviced women, they all looked like total homos. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against gay dudes. I just don’t want to get raped by one. I knew they wouldn’t be “up” for the job, har har har. I actually had a lot more luck in the “erotic services” section of Craigslist. I didn’t have to go through a middleman, and all the dudes I corresponded with were more than happy to send me cock shots, free of charge.
  • Starting July 16, McDain’s, a Pittsburgh-area restaurant, will ban children under the age of 6 from its dining area. Restaurant owner Mike Vuick said the policy came in response to complaints he’d received from older customers about kids causing a ruckus. In an email to his clientele, Vuick wrote, “We feel that McDain’s is a not a place for young children … and many, many times they have disturbed other customers.”

    A few weeks ago, Malaysia Airlines announced that it would ban infants from flying in the first-class cabin because other passengers had complained about squalling babies. And last February it was rumored that Virgin Atlantic and British Airways had been pressured to consider child-free zones and even child-free planes to appease business travelers who, according to a travel survey, listed unruly children as their No. 1 travel-related complaint.

  • Headphones on, everyone. The moaning mouth ‘bot is back, this time to sing you a Japanese nursery rhyme. (Freaking you out is a side effect, not the main goal.) Hideyuki Sawada of Kagawa University in Japan brought the mouthbot to Robotech 2011 to demonstrate its new powers. You can watch it below singing “Kagome Kagome,” a children’s song.

    The robot, which first started freaking us out last spring, is designed to help hearing-impaired people improve their speech. It’s the most mechanically accurate robot mouth ever, with an air pump to simulate lungs, artificial vocal chords, a resonance tube, a nasal cavity, and a microphone attached to a sound analyzer. It listens to itself and uses a learning algorithm to better mimic the sounds of human speech.

  • A two-headed snake has gone on display at a zoo in southern Ukraine. The “Skazka” (Fairy Tale) zoo in the Crimean city of Yalta on the Black Sea said on Wednesday that the albino California Kingsnake has two heads that think, react and eat separately, though one is more passive than the other. The head of the zoo, Oleh Zubkov, said that the two heads sometimes compete with each other for food. Zoo workers have to put a barrier between the heads when feeding the snake. The zoo said that healthy serpents of this kind are extremely rare, appearing once in 50 years. The snake will be on display at the zoo until mid-September
  • “Being an ex-terrorist myself is to understand the mindset of a terrorist,” Shoebat told CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360.”

    But CNN reporters in the United States, Israel and the Palestinian territories found no evidence that would support that biography. Neither Shoebat nor his business partner provided any proof of Shoebat’s involvement in terrorism, despite repeated requests.

  • Restaurant employees in suburban Cleveland told police that the group tried to make off with a painting valued at $157 that was hanging on a wall in the fast-food joint.
  • A Colorado teen is recovering from serious burns he suffered when the fireworks he was attempting to mix in a coffee grinder exploded.

    Police say the incident happened Monday when 19-year-old Sean Michael Ogden of Durango was trying to break down fireworks he had purchased so he could turn them into larger fireworks. The blast shook the house of a fire inspector who lives about a quarter-mile away.

    Fire marshal Tom Kaufman told The Durango Herald that the friction from the electric grinder could have ignited the mixture.

  • Thai authorities have arrested an Iranian man who allegedly tried to smuggle more than 50 million baht ($1.6 million) worth of crystal methamphetamine into the country disguised as handicraft art.

    The Customs Department said 28-year-old Safi Zadeh Hossein was carrying two plaque-shaped sculptures when he was arrested Tuesday on arrival at Suvarnabhumi International Airport from Damascus, Syria.

    Customs officials demonstrated to reporters Wednesday how the sculptures were pressed and molded from the illegal stimulant.

  • Troy Moross of Madison Heights was already dead of a blow to the head when someone removed his genitalia in a “precise surgical fashion,” a medical examiner testified Monday in the first-degree murder trial of Robert Nowak.

    Nowak, 51, is accused of killing 26-year-old Moross in February 2001 and leaving his body in a parking lot in Madison Heights.

    Investigators linked Nowak to Moross in 2010, after Nowak was arrested in California on a theft charge and his DNA matched that taken from Moross’ body.

    But Nowak’s defense attorney, Lawrence Kaluzny, said Moross likely was a victim of a bizarre sexual cult operating in a home in Rochester, where men were mutilated and tortured in the basement of the home.

  • Remember our story last week, discussing the copyright issues of monkeys taking photographs of themselves using a photographer’s camera that he had left alone? The whole post was about whether or not anyone had a legitimate copyright claim on the photos, noting that the photographer, David Slater, almost certainly did not have a claim, seeing as he did not take the photos, and even admits that the images were an accident from monkeys who found the camera (i.e., he has stated publicly that he did not “set up” the shot and let the monkeys take it). And yet, Caters News Agency has a copyright notice on two of the images, claiming to hold the rights to them. We doubted that the monkeys — who might have the best “claim” to copyright on these photos, if there is one, had licensed the images.
  • Court documents said neighbors checked on Mendoza’s son, Angelo Jr., after they noticed the father acting nervously and fleeing from his east Bakersfield apartment in his wheelchair. Inside, they found little Angelo naked and bleeding. Police said the boy had numerous bites to his hands and his eyes were swollen shut. Doctors said the boy’s left eye and muscle were completely missing. His other eye was mutilated beyond repair. The boy told them, “My daddy ate my eyes out.” Rodriguez said meanwhile Mendoza approached him at a neighbor’s vacant house down the street.
    Thanks Patrick Nybakken
  • Mexican soldiers discovered the biggest marijuana plantation ever found in the country in a remote desert surrounded by cactuses, a top army officer said on Thursday.

    Soldiers patrolling the area found 300 acres of marijuana plants being tended by dozens of men this week, said General Alfonso Duarte.

    He said the crop, which was found in the state of Baja California, about 200 miles/320 km south of San Diego, California, would have yielded about 120 tonnes and was worth about $160 million.

    “This is the biggest marijuana plantation we have found in the country,” Duarte said.

  • The Department of Homeland Security plans to spend more than $300 million over the next four years on radiation-detection equipment that has not been fully tested and may not work, according to a budget request and an unreleased report by the Government Accountability Office.

    The department’s plan is the latest in a series of efforts involving the troubled Advanced Spectroscopic Portal machine, which was touted by the George W. Bush administration as an advanced way to prevent the importation of radioactive materials that could be used in a nuclear or dirty bomb.

  • He said: ‘I thought it was worthless.

    ‘I didn’t it know it was valuable. That’s why I painted over it. I really am sorry if people are upset.’

    He is now exploring ways of recovering the painting and has enlisted the help of Richard Pelter the director and head conservator of the International Fine Art Conservation Studios.

    Mr Pelter has previously carried out major restoration work on buildings including Kensington Palace and Westminster Cathedral and now he is doing his best to restore the popular gorilla image.

  • The sea area polluted in an oil spill in China’s Bohai Bay was five times as large as Beijing previously announced. A probe conducted by the Chinese State Oceanic Administration found that some 4,240 sq.km of water, or seven times the size of Seoul, were polluted by oil leaks from the Peng Lai 19-3 oilfield in Bohai Bay, the daily Xin Jing Bao reported Wednesday.

    Beijing admitted the oil spill for the first time on July 5, a month after two oil leaks occurred at China’s largest marine oilfield on June 4 and 17, saying only 840 sq.km were polluted. But the water quality of a 3,400 sq.km area nearby dropped from Grade 1 to Grade 3.

  • Fox News host Eric Bolling pulled a Rudy Giuliani on Wednesday, asserting that there were no terrorist attacks on “American soil” during President Bush’s term in office.

    Giuliani famously made a similar assertion in early 2010, saying, “we had no domestic attacks under Bush.” Of course, the 9/11 attacks happened under Bush.

  • Before they were apologizing to women, trying to save Tibet and getting the head cancers, the Beastie Boys were three Jewish kids who took drugs and sometimes rapped. But mostly, they took drugs.

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