membrane | SeMeN SPeRmS SuPeR SiTe

For The Older People And The Kids

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✰ Why Privacy Matters Even if You Have ‘Nothing to Hide’
The deeper problem with the nothing-to-hide argument is that it myopically views privacy as a form of secrecy. In contrast, understanding privacy as a plurality of related issues demonstrates that the disclosure of bad things is just one among many difficulties caused by government security measures. To return to my discussion of literary metaphors, the problems are not just Orwellian but Kafkaesque. Government information-gathering programs are problematic even if no information that people want to hide is uncovered. In The Trial, the problem is not inhibited behavior but rather a suffocating powerlessness and vulnerability created by the court system’s use of personal data and its denial to the protagonist of any knowledge of or participation in the process. The harms are bureaucratic ones—indifference, error, abuse, frustration, and lack of transparency and accountability.
✰ Pure ecstasy can be ‘safe’ for adults, health official says
B.C.’s top health official says taking pure ecstasy can be “safe” when consumed responsibly by adults, but he says he is not advocating legalized recreational use of the drug. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Perry Kendall says while the pure form of the drug has been proven safe in controlled clinical trials by psychiatrists, the type of ecstasy sold on the street is laced with potentially dangerous impurities.
✰ Why Are Twinkies Cheaper Than Carrots?
Next week, the U.S. Senate will begin floor debate on the 2012 Farm Bill, which lays the groundwork for nearly $1 trillion in U.S. government spending over the next decade. Most of that spending goes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP — still sometimes referred to as food stamps), and to subsidies and incentives for farmers. Efforts to restrict SNAP spending to healthier foods have been fought bitterly, and successfully, by the junk food lobbies. Meanwhile, the current Senate proposal would give tens of billions of dollars in subsidies to Big Agribusiness, but would give next to nothing to programs benefiting the environment, organic food, nutrition, or small farmers. The food blog Civil Eats calls the proposal an “all-you-can-eat-buffet for the subsidy lobby.”
✰ Murder alleged after drug lab blast in Livermore
A man and woman who were critically burned in an explosion in Livermore were arrested Thursday on suspicion of murdering a third person who died in the blast, after authorities determined the three had been making hashish oil in an apartment. The explosion occurred on May 21, 2011 at 3624 Silver Oaks Way. It killed Paul Lom, 35, of San Jose, while critically injuring Lexie Miriyah Hutson, 23, who lived in the unventilated apartment, and her boyfriend, Evan Aviles, 22. An investigation determined that all three had been making hashish oil, a controlled substance, said police Sgt. John Hurd. The group had been using liquid butane, which is highly flammable, to extract the oil, Hurd said, and allowed an unknown amount of butane to pool on the floor. Hutson and Aviles were each booked Thursday on suspicion of murder and manufacturing a controlled substance. Both lost parts of their fingers and were severely burned as a result of the explosion, which left the structure uninhabitable.
✰ Family Claims Man Shot By Police Was Handcuffed
SELLERSVILLE, Pa. – The Bucks County District Attorney’s Office is now investigating Saturday’s shooting of a 26-year-old man during a confrontation with Perkasie police. Michael Marino was shot to death by an officer after he started acting strangely, cursing out neighbors and struggling violently with police. Friends and family claim Marino was unarmed and handcuffed at the time. The district attorney won’t comment further. Neighbors who saw Marino say they knew something was wrong. The three officers involved in the arrest are on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.
✰ Why the U.S. Media Barely Covered Brutal Right-Wing Race Riots in Tel Aviv
Several weeks back, Israel was rocked by a night of right-wing race-riots targeting African refugees in Tel Aviv. The thuggery was frightening – refugees were attacked, African-owned businesses and stores were vandalized and a community was forced to hunker down behind closed doors in fear for their lives. Perhaps more disturbing still was that the riots, which began with an anti-immigrant demonstration, were incited by Israeli politicians representing the increasingly influential hard-right. They fired up the crowd, calling the refugees “infiltrators,” and a “cancer,” and accusing them of violence and rape. It was a classic example of “othering” – eliminationist rhetoric that led directly to action by the xenophobic crowd.
✰ Parents Sue School Over Forced Shower
The complaint states that West berated and harassed the 8-year-old, third-grade younger brothers on Nov. 15. The parents claim West told the child he “smelled badly, was dirty and that he had bad hygiene,” and took him to see Van Rite. They both told the child to disrobe and take a shower in their presence and while another student was in the nurse’s office, the parents say. “While P.T. objecting to completely disrobing and taking a shower, defendants West and Van Rite forced P.T. to remove his clothing and began violently washing his body with a washcloth, scrubbing him over a large portion of his body, stuck cotton balls in his ears, all while ridiculing and harassing him about being ‘dirty,'” the complaint states. “P.T. was then forced to apply deodorant at the insistence of defendant West and Van Rite, who then told P.T. ‘if you ever come to school dirty again[,] we will strip you buck naked and throw you in the shower and scrub you down.'”
✰ Media Consolidation: The Illusion of Choice (Infographic) These 6 Corporations Control 90% Of The Media In America
As a dad (and blogger) I’m concerned with the integrity of the news and entertainment my family and I consume every day. Who really produces, owns and airs the shows my kids are glued to every evening and which companies select the stories I read with such loyalty each morning? I’ve always advocated for critical consumption, and what could be more important than an awareness of the sources of our families’ daily info and entertainment diets? And today, most of our media is controlled by one of six companies.
✰ Swedish Left Party Chapter Wants To Make Urinating While Standing Illegal For Men
Known as a socialist and feminist organization, the party claims that seated urination is more hygienic for men — the practice decreases the likelihood of puddles and other unwanted residue forming in the stall — in addition to being better for a man’s health by more effectively emptying one’s bladder, The Local reported. But not everyone agrees. “Men scatter urine not so much during the actual urination as during the ‘shaking off’ that follows,” John Gamel, a professor at the University of Louisville, wrote while addressing the issue in 2009. “As a result, forcing men to sit while emptying their bladders will serve little purpose, since no man wants to shake himself off while remaining seated on the toilet.”
✰ FBI Seizes NAMBLA List During Search
Following his May 23 arrest, Godek waived his Miranda rights and told agents that he had been “collecting pictures of teen boys for a very long time” and preferred “boys aged 14 and older,” according to Messineo’s affidavit. Godek admitted that he masturbated to these images, and “sent such pictures” to others via e-mail. With Godek’s consent, agents searched his vehicle (in which he had been living) and located the NAMBLA membership list and “articles about the arrests of NAMBLA members.” Investigators also seized “printed child pornography images,” a digital camera containing illicit images, and an “article about methods of enticing boys into sexual activity.” The FBI affidavit does not detail why Godek was in possession of the membership list, or what, if any, role he has with the secretive organization. NAMBLA claims it is a civil rights group dedicated to ending “the extreme oppression of men and boys in mutually consensual relationships.”
✰ Groupthink And The Elevator Experiment
Want to see how people will change to fit in? In 1962, groundbreaking social psychologist Solomon Asch teamed up with the television show Candid Camera to demonstrate how quickly a basic social norm (how people stand in an elevator) could be reversed using group conformity. Just imagine all the behaviors and beliefs you could get tricked into following, via the power of social pressure. (The elevator experiment was still effective when replicated in the present day on the University of South Florida campus.)
✰ It happens – athletes poop their pants
Exhausted and dangerously dehydrated, Moss was losing control of her body with every step. But she trudged on, pushing herself toward victory. The legs went first. A quarter mile after passing the Sizzler, Moss wobbled, then her knees buckled inward and she telescoped to the ground like a dynamited building. The moment she hit the pavement, her bowels cut loose, emptying against her will. The torrent breached her dainty, light-blue running shorts and moved down her legs, where the hot, acidic fecal matter stung her skin and the putrid stench tattooed the inside of her nostrils.
✰ Scores of N.C. inmates ‘innocent’ of gun charges, yet still imprisoned
A USA TODAY investigation, based on court records and interviews with government officials and attorneys, found more than 60 men who went to prison for violating federal gun possession laws, even though courts have since determined that it was not a federal crime for them to have a gun. Many of them don’t even know they’re innocent. The legal issues underlying their situation are complicated, and are unique to North Carolina. But the bottom line is that each of them went to prison for breaking a law that makes it a federal crime for convicted felons to possess a gun. The problem is that none of them had criminal records serious enough to make them felons under federal law. Still, the Justice Department has not attempted to identify the men, has made no effort to notify them, and, in a few cases in which the men have come forward on their own, has argued in court that they should not be released.
✰ Marx 1975 Toy Catalog
Featuring Jack Davis illustrations.
✰ The next consumerization revolution: Your personal data
You’re giving away what’s valuable about you Right now, users give away valuable information about themselves. Sometimes they get something of real value in return, but most online businesses give away worthless “value” dressed up using gamification techniques. Klout, I’m looking at you. As we see more data breaches and grosser levels of disrespect for user privacy, I suspect the public will start to realize they’re being had. And as they’ve learned they can do in other venues, they’ll take charge. The pieces are out there to create a data brokerage that pays you I fully expect to see services pop up that act as personal-data brokers, giving users a cut of the money made from their personal information — the data users explicitly choose to share, not what is gathered about them sneakily. Again, this business model has long existed, but not in a way that allows individuals to participate in the proceeds.
✰ Cop dies during 3-way sex; widow wins $3M lawsuit
A jury has awarded a Georgia woman $3 million over her husband’s heart attack, finding that his doctor should have warned the Atlanta cop against strenuous activity like the three-way sex he was having at the time he died, WXIA-TV reports. William Martinez, a 31-year-old Atlanta police officer, collapsed and died while he and a male friend were having sex with a woman who was not his wife at an Atlanta airport motel in 2009.
✰ Pervy Perp Again Busted For Sex With Teddy Bear
For the fourth time in the past two years, a Cincinnati man has been arrested for masturbating in public with the aid of a teddy bear, records show. Charles Marshall, 28, was arrested Wednesday evening after employees at a health clinic spotted him pleasuring himself in an alley. Marshall, pictured in the adjacent mug shot, was cited for disorderly conduct. Municipal Court records show that Marshall has already been convicted three times of engaging in public indecency/disorderly conduct with a teddy bear. The misdemeanor counts resulted in short jail sentences and small fines for Marshall. Marshall was first busted in February 2010 when witnesses spotted him engaged “with a teddy bear in mens bathroom” at a public library (which prompted a judge to order him to “stay away all Hamilton Co. public libraries”). He was again arrested in November 2010 and August 2011 for “masturbating w/a stuffed animal (teddy bear)” and “masturbating using a teddy bear in a public place where minors
✰ Human Microbiome Project Explores Our 100 Trillion Good Bacteria
Babies born by Caesarean section, Dr. Proctor added, start out with different microbiomes, but it is not yet known whether their microbiomes remain different after they mature. In adults, the body carries two to five pounds of bacteria, even though these cells are minuscule — one-tenth to one-hundredth the size of a human cell. The gut, in particular, is stuffed with them. “The gut is not jam-packed with food; it is jam-packed with microbes,” Dr. Proctor said. “Half of your stool is not leftover food. It is microbial biomass.” But bacteria multiply so quickly that they replenish their numbers as fast as they are excreted. The bacteria also help the immune system, Dr. Huttenhower said. The best example is in the vagina, where they secrete chemicals that can kill other bacteria and make the environment slightly acidic, which is unappealing to other microbes.
✰ Hitchhiker retracts claim he was victim of drive-by shooting
A hitchhiker, who says he is writing a memoir called Kindness in America and claimed he was victim of a drive-by shooting in Montana, admits he shot himself, according to Montana authorities.
✰ Parents arrested after police find children blindfolded and bound outside Walmart (video)
A suburban Chicago couple is behind bars and their five children are in protective custody after two of them were discovered blindfolded and with their limbs bound in the parking lot of a Walmart, police said. Adolfo Gomez, 52, and Deborah Gomez, 43, of Northlake, Illinois, were arrested after police visited the store in Lawrence, Kansas on Wednesday and spotted a 5-year-old boy sitting on the ground beside a large SUV with his hands tied behind his back, his legs bound and a blindfold covering his eyes. A 7-year-old girl was found inside the vehicle, also bound and blindfolded, along with three other children, ages 12, 13 and 15, who were not restrained. Thanks Jasmine
✰ More Women Were Likely Videotaped in Sears Dressing Room, Says Lawyer
Female customers who shopped at a Sears store in North Hollywood, Calif., over the past three years may have been videotaped in the dressing rooms and restrooms, according to an attorney representing 25 women suing the retail chain. The group is suing Sears and a former maintenance worker who allegedly videotaped them from 2009 to April 2012. Michael Alder, the attorney for the plaintiffs, said an unknown number of female customers were also likely videotaped in the store during that period. “There’s a lot of people who were patrons and don’t have any idea that they’ve been videotaped,” Alder said.
✰ Furry Child: Chinese Girl’s Body Covered by Black Spots & Fur
6-year-old Lili of Liuchang village of Qingzhen county city in Guizhou province, the left side of her face covered with black fur, with large and small black spots all over her body. When she was 2 years old, her mother left the family never to return, her father took her to a childcare nursery and disappeared without a trace, and it was kind-hearted distant relative Liu Mingying who brought her back from Guiyang to the village. She has now reached school age and though the school is right in front of her home, attending school is still something unattainable for Lili. Qianzhong Morning News/CFP Lili was born with these black spots, and when she was two years old, her mother could no longer stand this “fur child”, and in her frustration abandoned Lili, never to return. Her father, who had been working long-term in Guiyang brought her to a children’s nursery, and never reappeared.
✰ KeepTheWebOpen.com
But where can a digital citizen turn for protection against the powerful? This question lay at the heart of the fight to stop SOPA and PIPA and keep the web open. While I do not have all the answers, the remarkable cooperation we witnessed in defense of an open Internet showed me three things. First, government is flying blind, interfering and regulating without understanding even the basics. Second, we have a rare opportunity to give government marching orders on how to treat the Internet, those who use it and the innovation it supports. And third, we must get to work immediately because our opponents are not giving up.
✰ Bondage-Loving Swedish Mom Admits Building Sex Chamber In Abandoned Military Bunker
A Swedish mom has a face that is 50 shades of red ever since police came across a secret sex chamber she set up at an abandoned military bunker near the town of Nordmaling. Last Friday, two fisherman came across the old bunker and discovered what appeared to be either a garden of earthly delights complete with a silk-sheet laden bed, ropes, dildos and leather items — or a crime scene. The fishermen assumed it was a crime scene, according to Sweden’s The Local, especially since a similarly equipped dungeon was discovered in March 2011 in an abandoned farmhouse.
✰ Woman’s mouth ‘falls pregnant’ to twelve squid after biting into sea creature, scientists claim
When examined, the doctors found ‘baby cephalopods’ attached to her mouth. These are small pods, covered in a cement-like material to make them stick. Inside the pods is an ‘ejaculatory apparatus’ and sperm – with the apparatus expelling the sperm quite forcefully. After the victim of the ‘attack’ was hospitalised, doctors removed the baby cephalopods from her gums, tongue and cheek. It was only then that the pods were formally identified as ‘squid spermatophores.’ The Center’s paper says: ‘She did not swallow the portion, but spat it out immediately. She complained of a pricking and foreign-body sensation in the oral cavity. ‘Twelve small, white spindle-shaped, bug-like organisms stuck in the mucous membrane of the tongue, cheek, and gingiva [gums] were completely removed, along with the affected mucosa. ‘On the basis of their morphology and the presence of the sperm bag, the foreign bodies were identified as squid spermatophores.’
✰ He rigged his rig to beat toll
Now you see it, now you don’t. A Queens truck driver took a move from the magician’s playbook, making his license plate seemingly disappear as he drove through a toll plaza without paying the $40 fee, the Port Authority said Wednesday. Orlando Payano’s tractor-trailer had a cable running from the license plate to the dashboard cigarette lighter when PA police stopped it recently on the Staten Island side of the Goethals Bridge, authority spokesman Steve Coleman said
✰ Conspiracy Of Silence [Video]
Conspiracy of Silence is a powerful, disturbing documentary revealing a U.S. child sex abuse and pedophilia ring that leads to the highest levels of government. Featuring intrepid investigator John DeCamp, a highly decorated Vietnam war veteran and 16-year Nebraska state senator, Conspiracy of Silence reveals how rogue elements at all levels of government have been involved in systematic child sex abuse and pedophilia to feed the base desires of key politicians. Based on DeCamp’s riveting book, The Franklin Cover-up, Conspiracy of Silence begins with the shut-down of Nebraska’s Franklin Community Federal Credit Union after a raid by federal agencies in 1988 revealed that $40 million was missing. When the Nebraska legislature launched a probe into the affair, what initially looked like a financial swindle soon exploded into a startling tale of drugs, money laundering, and a nationwide child sex abuse ring. Nineteen months later, the legislative committee’s chief investigator died suddenly
✰ You know it’s an election year when… Barack Obama honors Israeli president with Medal of Freedom
US President Barack Obama has awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Israeli President Shimon Peres, the man who has overseen the killing of Palestinian women and children by Israeli forces in the occupied territories for decades.
✰ Jesse Ventura Explains Why Governments Are Like Gangs
“When you vote, you’re essentially choosing gang members — do you want the Crips to lead or the Bloods?” Ventura says, noting that the Bloods’ colors are red, like the Republicans, and the Crips’ color is blue, like the Democrats.
✰ Top 10 Most Incredible Prison Escapes
Every year, thousands of inmates escape from prisons around the world. Of these, most just walk away from minimum-security corrections facilities, but other inmates implement complex, ingenious, and often violent schemes in order to make their getaway. Whether the work of notorious outlaws, WWII G.I.s, or 18th century writers, the following are the top 10 most incredible prison escapes.
✰ Police: ‘Forest Boy’ story is a hoax
The story of the so-called Forest Boy — a riddle that has perplexed people in Germany and elsewhere for months — is a lie, police in Germany said Friday. The 20-year-old hoaxer, who claimed he was 17 and lived in the German woods for five years, is actually from Hengelo, in the Netherlands. He never lived in the forest and made his way to Berlin some time last year, police said. He had been declared missing in September when he was 19. But because he was an adult and could determine where he wanted to live, there was no further investigation by Dutch authorities, police in Germany said. Police say the man has admitted his story is a lie and confirmed his identity. He will have to leave a Berlin city youth home since he is not under age.
✰ NPIEE: The North Pole Inner Earth Expedition
The science is real. The story is more than 5,000 years old. The legend says that at a certain place above the Arctic Circle, there exists an oceanic depression or an entrance into the Earth. It’s a place where the maritime legend claims sea level isn’t level anymore. The discovery that the earth is hollow would forever shatter our long-held beliefs about how planets are formed. More importantly, however, discovering life beneath the earth’s crust could potentially provide us with new tools that would allow life on the surface to regain environmental balance, harmony, and possibly even peace. These prospects make the North Pole Inner Earth Expedition the greatest expedition in the history of the world.
✰ Living Stem Cells Discovered in 17-Day-Old Human Corpses
The cadavers in question had been kept at 39 degrees F (4 degrees C) to keep from rotting. The stem cells the researchers isolated give rise to skeletal muscle, the kind connected to the bones, as opposed to the kind in the heart or other internal organs. [The Science of Death: 10 Tales from the Crypt & Beyond] Apparently the stem cells were able survive in the total absence of oxygen. “These cells are so resistant to extreme and deleterious conditions that they stay alive up to 17 days after death,” Chrétien said. The researchers also recovered viable stem cellsfrom mice 14 days after death. These cells appeared to function properly after they were transplanted into living mice, helping regenerate damaged tissues.
✰ Officials investigating possible lungs found on South L.A. sidewalk
L.A. NOW Southern California — this just in Los Angeles County officials are investigating what appeared to be a pair of lungs found on a sidewalk in unincorporated South Los Angeles. A citizen called to report what she thought were the organs about 8:30 p.m. Sunday in the 13100 block of Avalon Boulevard, said Sgt. Robert Dean of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Deputies responded and called the coroner’s office to the scene. Additional testing will be done to determine if the remains are in fact lungs and whether they are human, Dean said. “We don’t know what they are,” Dean said. “It’s really weird.”
✰ Tennessee’s deadbeat dads: The three men who have 81 children by 46 different women… and they’re not paying child support to any of them
Three men in Tennessee have notched up a staggering 78 children by 46 different women between them – and are doing their best to squirm out of paying for a single one. Terry Turnage has 23 children with 17 different women, while Richard M. Colbert has 25 children with 18 women. But Desmond Hatchett takes the record with 30 children with 11 women. On rare occasions, they pay a few dollars to the long-suffering mothers but mostly leave the state to pick up the slack – while one eludes his responsibilities altogether thanks to a stint in prison. The latest deadbeat dad to emerge from the state is Turnage, who was summoned before a judge over child support payments for his 23 kids by 17 different women – but didn’t show up to court.
✰ Woman accused of castrating man with bare hands
Police in Shelby say they arrested a woman over the weekend after she squeezed a man’s testicles out of his scrotum. Joyce Maxine Gregory, 35, is charged with malicious castration and assault inflicting serious bodily injury, according to Shelby Police Chief Jeff Ledford. Police say Gregory got into an argument with an older man Saturday morning. When he went outside to call 911 she followed him and grabbed his scrotum.
✰ What Does It Mean To Be Cool? It May Not Be What You Think
“James Dean is no longer the epitome of cool,” Dar-Nimrod said. “The much darker version of what coolness is still there, but it is not the main focus. The main thing is: Do I like this person? Is this person nice to people, attractive, confident and successful? That’s cool today, at least among young mainstream individuals.”

 

 

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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on June 17, 2012

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Seventies Sidewalk Surfin’

► Scientists grow sperm in laboratory dish
The development opens up the possibility of infertile men being able to father their own children rather than using donor sperm. Researchers in Germany and Israel were able to grow mouse sperm from a few cells in a laboratory dish. In a world first a team headed by Professor Stefan Schlatt, at Muenster University in Germany, were able to grow sperm by using germ cells. These are the cells in testicles that are responsible for sperm production. Scientists grew the sperm by surrounding the germ cells in a special compound called agar jelly to create an environment similar to that found in testicles.
► How to fake the pledge of allegiance
“I pledge a lesson to queen’s frag and her United States of Hysteria, and to the wee puppet for witch’s hands. One Asian, under dog, invisible, with little tea and just rice for all.”
► Worlds earliest toy car and title deed on show at Mardin Museum
Archaeologist Mesut Alp said that the toy car, which is made out of stone, dates back to the late Stone Age and is thought to be 7,500 years old. The Culture and Tourism Director of Mardin, Davut Beliktay, said that the car is like a copy of cars today, adding that in its shape, the ancient toy also resembles a tractor. Beliktay also revealed that toy dolls and whistles, also made of stone, were found at sites in the area, “we believe that the whistles and dolls are 5,000 to 6,000 years old. The whistles are still in working condition,” he said.
► Death of man struck by train leads to bizarre civil case
Ruling in what it called a “tragically bizarre” case, an appeals court found that the estate of a man killed by a train while crossing the Edgebrook Metra station tracks can be held liable after a part of his body sent airborne by the collision struck and injured a bystander. In 2008, Hiroyuki Joho, 18, was hurrying in pouring rain with an umbrella over his head, trying to catch an inbound Metra train due to arrive in about five minutes when he was struck by a southbound Amtrak train traveling more than 70 mph. A large portion of his body was thrown about 100 feet on to the southbound platform, where it struck Gayane Zokhrabov, then 58, who was waiting to catch the 8:17 a.m. train to work. She was knocked to the ground, her leg and wrist broken and her shoulder injured.
► Gary Webb’s Drug War Reporting Vindicated
Douglas Farah was in El Salvador when the San Jose Mercury News broke a major story in the summer of 1996: The Nicaraguan Contras, a confederation of paramilitary rebels sponsored by the CIA, had been funding some of their operations by exporting cocaine to the United States. One of their best customers was a man nicknamed “Freeway Rick” — Ricky Donnell Ross, then a Southern California dealer who was running an operation the Los Angeles Times dubbed “the Wal-Mart of crack dealing.”
► New Year’s Resolution: Full Disk Encryption on Every Computer You Own
The New Year is upon us, and you might be partaking in the tradition of making a resolution for the coming year. This year, why not make a resolution to protect your data privacy with one of the most powerful tools available? Commit to full disk encryption on each of your computers. Many of us now have private information on our computers: personal records, business data, e-mails, web history, or information we have about our friends, family, or colleagues.  Encryption is a great way to ensure that your data will remain safe when you travel or if your laptop is lost or stolen. Best of all, it’s free. So don’t put off taking security steps that can help protect your private data. Join EFF in resolving to encrypt your disks 2012. Here’s some basic info about full disk encryption. You can read this and much more (including information on password security) in our recent whitepaper on protecting privacy at the border.
► The Perfect Score: Cheating on the SAT
For Sam Eshaghoff, getting a high score on the SAT college admissions exam was more than a point of pride. It was a lucrative business. As Alison Stewart reports, other students paid Eshaghoff up to $2,500 each to take their tests using easily manufactured fake IDs. His scam came crashing down in fall 2011, when he was arrested for criminal impersonation and fraud. Eshaghoff has since accepted a plea deal, but the case still raises major questions about the integrity of the test itself.
► Bad Teachers: Weird Education Crimes of 2011
Gang Bang Teacher: Cops Say She Had Sex With Five Students & Filmed It. Science Teacher Accused of Sex With 17-Year-Old Student. Caught in the Act: Cops Say Teacher Seen Having Sex With Student. Biology Teacher Accused of Sexy Lesson. Bad Teacher: Police Say Substitute Urinated in Front of Class. Cops: Teacher Caught Doing It With ‘Love Doll’ on School Property.
► Russian officials rattled by breach at rocket plant
Russia’s deputy prime minister vowed Thursday to punish “sleepy” security officials after bloggers posted dozens of photos of an apparently unguarded strategic military rocket motor factory near Moscow. Blogger Lana Sator said she and friends met not a soul, much less any security guards, as they roamed around state rocket-maker Energomash’s plant, snapping pictures, on five separate night-time excursions in recent months. She posted almost 100 pictures of decrepit-looking hardware from inside a rusted engine-fuel testing tower, the plant’s control room and even its roof at lana-sator.livejournal.com
► Facebook Responsible for A Third of Divorces in UK?
A recent survey conducted by a UK based divorce website disclosed that 33 per cent behaviour divorce petitions filed cite Facebook as a cause for filling for divorce in 2011. In 2009 this figure was 20 per cent. 5000 people were surveyed by Divorce-Online, the UK divorce website, during 2009 and 2011 covering Facebook as a means to check behaviour of spouse with the opposite sex and spouses using the social networking platform to comment about their exes post the separation.
► Faking It: How the Media Manipulates the World into War
As the drums of war begin to beat once again in Iran, Syria, the South China Sea, and other potential hotspots and flashpoints around the globe, concerned citizens are asking how a world so sick of bloodshed and a population so tired of conflict could be led to this spot once again. To understand this seeming paradox, we must first understand the centuries-long history of how media has been used to whip the nation into wartime frenzy, dehumanize the supposed enemies, and even to manipulate the public into believing in causes for war that, decades later, were admitted to be completely fictitious.
► U.S. double standard surfaces in Strait of Hormuz
What was truly comical was the manner in which numerous U.S. military pundits magnified the actual threat the primitive Iranian navy poses. Contrary to those gross exaggerations, the fact is that the most serious threat in Iran’s maritime arsenal is its three small, aging, Soviet-era Kilo-class submarines. It is believed that at best, only two of the vessels are even still seaworthy, and the shallow, narrow Strait of Hormuz would preclude the effective use of any submarines. As for its surface fleet, Iran does possess a few fast missile patrol boats and an additional ad hoc flotilla of designated suicide attack boats. The majority of these craft are little more than rigid-hulled inflatables mounted with a variety of light machine-guns, packed with explosives and crewed by militia zealots. Opposing this cockleshell Flintstones navy is the mighty U.S. Fifth Fleet. Consisting of more than 20 warships, including aircraft carriers and missile cruisers
► Lego Concentration Camp
“Each box contains a set of bricks, that can be used to build the element of a concentration camp as shown on the box. All elements in the sets as well as those depicted on the boxes have either been taken from the mass-produced sets of LEGO bricks, or have been slightly altered by the artist. The prisoners are played by smiling skeletons from the “Pirate” set, while slightly modified figurines from the “Police Station” set appear as tormenters. In the upper-left corner of each box we find the following statement: “This work by Zbigniew Libera has been sponsored by Lego” – as the project was made possible thanks to the bricks presented by the polish department of the Danish company. Upon its presentation in Denmark, LEGO headquarters has launched legal complaints against the artist, however as a result of a fierce press campaign it has decided to drop the lawsuit. The controversies concerning Libera’s LEGO also appeared in Poland, yet those where of a somewhat different character.
► This is What Happens When You Give Thousands of Stickers to Thousands of Kids
This December, in a surprisingly simple yet ridiculously amazing installation for the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, artist Yayoi Kusama constructed a large domestic environment, painting every wall, chair, table, piano, and household decoration a brilliant white, effectively serving as a giant white canvas. Over the course of two weeks, the museum’s smallest visitors were given thousands upon thousands of colored dot stickers and were invited to collaborate in the transformation of the space, turning the house into a vibrantly mottled explosion of color. How great is this? Given the opportunity my son could probably cover the entire piano alone in about fifteen minutes. The installation, entitled The Obliteration Room, is part of Kusama’s Look Now, See Forever exhibition that runs through March 12.
► DARPA’s New Spy Satellite Could Provide Real-Time Video From Anywhere on Earth
“It sees you when you’re sleeping and knows when you’re awake” could be the theme song for a new spy satellite being developed by DARPA. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s latest proof-of-concept project is called the Membrane Optical Imager for Real-Time Exploitation (MOIRE), and would provide real-time images and video of any place on Earth at any time — a capability that, so far, only exists in the realm of movies and science fiction. The details of this huge eye-in-the-sky look like something right out of science fiction, as well, and it would be interesting to determine if it could have applications for astronomy as well.
► Skateboard Songs Of The 70’s
“Skateboard” (as it is known in Brazil) is a sport that has emerged in the late 50 invented by surfers as a hobby in times of low tide. With the passage of time was the sportive will gain new fans and winning characteristics. In the mean time (years 50 and 60) there were a few musical recordings exploring the theme of skateboarding, such as “Skatebordin ‘Pt 1 & Pt 2” dual “Jan & Dean.” But the boom of skateboarding was only to give even in the late ’70s, when the sport received a veritable flood of newcomers, and soon to greatly increase the number of songs exploring this new market of skaters. The recordings ranging from power pop, bubble gum, glam, disco, funk or any musical style that could match the atmosphere that the young skate ever breathed, with a strong influence of surf music, especially the Beach Boys.

 

 

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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on January 3, 2012

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Bigg Nuttz

✪ E.F.A.: COMPLETE ‘VILLAGE VOICE MEDIA’ INTERVIEW WITH E.F.A. MEMBERS
My main reason for doing this interview is as a member of E.F.A., whose main tenet is “Equality For All”, meaning all creatures. This means that we have many activities and aims (visit www.equalityforall.net for details) including supporting “extreme” expressions of inter-species love. By “extreme” I mean including sexual expressions, but we have absolutely no tolerance for forced sexual interaction with any species, or inflicting pain of any sort. In that sense I support zoophilia with any animal – if done sensitively and painlessly.
✪ Family man Ben Affleck shows off his wild side by proudly displaying his tough guy tattoo…of a dolphin
The actor has body art in the form of a dolphin just below his right hip, perilously close to his bottom. He allegedly opted for the dolphin to cover up an ex-high school girlfriend’s name.
✪ Terminator-style contact lenses will keep you up to date with news
Imagine catching up with your texts, social networking and perhaps the news without having to log on to a computer or even glance at a smartphone. Messages and images would simply appear in front of your eyes, generated by a computerised contact lens. Of course, you may not always want to be bothered by such messages if you are doing anything so quaint as – for instance – reading a book or going out walking and enjoying the scenery. But until now the concept of info-vision – the ability to stream information across a person’s field of vision – had belonged to the realms of science fiction, featuring in films such as the Terminator series or TV shows such as Torchwood. However, scientists have developed a prototype lens that could one day provide the wearer with all kinds of hands-free information. It could also be used to display directions and TV programmes.
✪ Chemistry professor links feces and caffeine
Researchers led by Prof. Sébastien Sauvé of the University of Montreal’s Department of Chemistry have discovered that traces of caffeine are a useful indicator of the contamination of our water by sewers. “E coli bacteria is commonly used to evaluate and regulate the levels of fecal pollution of our water from storm water discharge, but because storm sewers systems collect surface runoff, non-human sources can contribute significantly to the levels that are observed,” Sauvé explained. “Our study has determined that there is a strong correlation between the levels of caffeine in water and the level of bacteria, and that chemists can therefore use caffeine levels as an indicator of pollution due to sewerage systems.”
✪ Legalization debate: first pot, now coke?
Legalization used to be the rallying cry of stoners alone. Not anymore. In Latin America, leaders seem to be reaching a new consensus about the drug war: it has failed, and it’s time for a new solution. Most say that foreign demand for cocaine and marijuana is the underlying problem. If American, Europeans and others stopped buying the drugs, the vast black-market for the trade wouldn’t exist. The drug traffickers wouldn’t be able to charge huge profits, and they wouldn’t be able to afford the massive weaponry and build the network of informants, enforcers, dealers and mules that allow them to sustain their production and distribution supply chain. But you can’t exactly presto demand away. Unless, the reasoning goes, you just legalize the drugs. Sell them over the counter for a reasonable price. Undercut the illegal market. Give the farmers who grow the stuff good jobs, free of fear, and give governments a share in the drug profits by taxing them.
✪ Opportunity in the Adderall Drought
Drug-dealing does not come naturally to me. But gradually, the opportunity created by the ongoing shortage of Adderall IR (and its generic equivalents) gets impossible to ignore. Strict limits govern the supply of the drug’s ingredients (chiefly, amphetamine), and a number of manufacturers have already hit their caps—a reality of which I’m made aware after trying a dozen city pharmacies and learning they’ll be sold out until next year. I finally track down some at the Hoboken Family Pharmacy and pay $155 for 120 tablets. On the PATH train back, I ponder my good fortune in finding a pharmacy with the drug available, and in being so overprescribed. The blue pills in my pocket practically scream, “Sell me!”
✪ The Young and the Lazy
Though the Bible says that rich people getting into heaven is as likely as squeezing a 1500-pound mammal through a tiny hole, it’s worth noting that the vast majority of billionaires made their fortunes from scratch. It’s also worth noting how unbelievably lazy today’s kids can be. I’ve been hiring twenty-somethings for about twenty years now, and though they are getting more tech-savvy, their productivity keeps plummeting. I believe this is due to their snowballing sense of entitlement. Here are ten lessons I’ve learned after watching kids in their early twenties acting hyper-entitled
✪ Man details sexual relationship with dolphin in book ‘Wet Goddess’
MB: She began raking her teeth lightly against my arms and legs which was indescribably erotic. Some might find it frightening, I found it erotic. DF: Now in your book, you talk about how that led on to you two having sex. A lot of people would say that’s wrong, what’s right in your mind about what you did? MB: What was right with it is that the dolphin initiated the whole sexual thing. As I mentioned, she was in isolation – she’d be using me to satisfy her sexual needs.
✪ Sleazy Aussie Landlord Caught Hiding In Air Vent To Spy On Naked Tenants
A sleazy 75-year-old Australian landlord was caught lurking in an air vent with a camera — filming his young tenants having sex, the Manly Daily reported Thursday. Bruno Silvolli, of Narrabeen in Sydney, also cut holes in the bathroom wall of his tenants’ apartment so he could spy on those inside. The married man is due for sentencing in January after pleading guilty in the Manly Court to several counts of filming and watching without consent, as well as indecently assaulting a female tenant. He first came to police attention last year when a young couple, who were renting the apartment below Silvolli’s home, reported the old man had groped the woman’s breast while she hung washing out and later exposed himself.
✪ Las Vegas man with 100-pound scrotum seeks $1 million for surgery
It sat in front of him, on top of a pillow that rested on a milk crate. He sprinkled baby powder on it — what looked like a huge watermelon encased in a compression bandage — but the unmistakable smell of urine couldn’t be completely smothered. “Hard to believe, isn’t it?” 47-year-old Wesley Warren Jr. said in the poorly lit apartment. “It’s freakish.” What sat in front of where Warren was seated in shorts — what is actually attached to him — was more than 100 pounds of scrotum, the protective sac of skin and muscle that contains his testicles.
✪ Sex with animals linked to penis cancer
Micro-injuries to the penis are a well-recognized risk factor for the development of penile cancer. Such physical trauma could explain how sex with animals causes the cancer. “We think that the intense and long-term SWA practice could produce micro-traumas in the human penile tissue,” Zequi said. “The genital mucus membranes of animals could have different characteristics from human genitalia, and the animals’ secretions are probably different from human fluids. Perhaps animal tissues are less soft than ours, and non-human secretions would be toxic for us,” he explained.
✪ Young drug users turn to ‘bubble’ for a cheap high
An increasing number of young adults were found to be buying a drug they refer to as “bubble”, once a street name for mephedrone but now a term for any white powder. Users are uncertain about what they are taking and any potential health risks. “We found that one in 10 of the young adults questioned had taken mephedrone within the past year and one in 20 within the past month,” said Dr Fiona Measham, who led the study. “In the case of the next generation of ‘legal highs’, no clear substitute for mephedrone has emerged. Instead, there was uncertainty, confusion and a degree of disinterest. In this vacuum, bubble has emerged and evolved as a generic term used in the north of England to refer to any unknown white powders which are synthetic stimulants.” Thanks Cat
✪ Rock Fan Kills Himself After Concert Left Him With Tinnitus
A British rock music fan stabbed himself to death after a night out watching U.S. band Them Crooked Vultures left him with severe tinnitus, a coroner’s investigation reported. Robert McIndoe, 52, was unable to sleep for three months after seeing the band – made up of former band members from Led Zeppelin, Foo Fighters and Queens of the Stone Age – at the Brixton Academy, south London. His psychiatrist, Dr. Helen Stinson, said, “He accepted death as a side-effect of stopping the noise,” the Daily Mirror reported Friday. The inquest heard he tried to commit suicide by taking an overdose at his home in south London in the same month that he fatally stabbed himself. McIndoe’s wife Shirley said, “He just wanted not to be suffering.”
✪ Joey Skaggs: World’s Largest Bra Record Should Be Mine (PHOTOS)
Back in 1969, Joey Skaggs, a famed conceptual artist and media prankster, created a bra that was reportedly 120 feet long — 50 feet for the cups alone — as a statement about America’s fixation on breasts.
✪ Miley Cyrus Admits She’s A Huge Stoner [VIDEO]
Here’s video of her at her 19th birthday party talking about her Bob Marley cake and how she smokes “way too much fucking weed.”

 

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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on November 28, 2011

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PHEW..!

  • If you don’t want to do the time, stay offline. Or at the very least, don’t “friend” your probation officer.

    Convicted of possessing methamphetamine and Ecstasy, Scott W. Roby learned that the hard way. The Louisville man had his probation revoked this month — and was sentenced to two years in prison — in part for violating conditions that required him to stay alcohol-free and out of bars and liquor stores.

    Roby had invited his probation officer to be his friend on Facebook, then Roby posted pictures of himself drinking — including one in which he was holding a beer while posed next to “Buddy Bat,” the mascot for the Louisville Bats, said prosecutor Dinah Koehler.

    In another Facebook post, according to court records, Roby asked: “Anyone wanna go get smashed tonight one last time before the end of the Earth?”

  • The change in Oxycontin formulation had a second, deadlier effect. Oxycodone is a lipid (fat)-soluble molecule, so the drug crosses nasal membranes quickly—almost as quickly as when the drug is injected. Most users of oxycodone were content to snort the drug, as the benefit of injecting was not worth dissolving the crushed tablets and using needles. But heroin burns when it is ‘insufflated’ or snorted, and the molecule crossed lipid membranes more slowly— providing reasons to inject the drug. Many patients tell me that they never considered using needles when Oxycontin was around, but that the only way to get similar effects from heroin was by injecting the drug. In other words, the change in formulation of Oxycontin resulted in an increase in intravenous drug abuse.
  • According to New Mexico state police, the mother of Velasquez’s nine-year-old son noticed unusual track marks on the boy’s neck and took him to the hospital. There, the youngster told investigators about how his dad would inject him with heroin sometimes. The police then arrested Velasquez, who’s now facing charges of child abuse and contributing to a delinquency of a minor.
  • The Ecuadorian government imposed a 72-hour nationwide ban on sales and consumption of alcohol after 21 people died from drinking homemade aguardiente made with methanol.

    The announcement was made Sunday during a press conference at which a number officials took part including Health Minister David Chiriboga and Security Minister Homero Arellano, and at which a national health emergency was declared.

    A source at Arellano’s office told Efe that the ban on booze is in force for all types of liquors, but only homemade alcohol will be subject to summary confiscation.

    Authorities had already declared the health emergency and alcohol ban in Los Rios province, where the deaths took place and where some 9,000 liters (2,400 gallons) of homemade liquor were seized.

  • UFOs and aliens beings have often been portrayed in mass media, whether it be movies or television shows. Most of these appearances were however heavily edited and calculated by the American government in order to communicate a specific attitude towards this mysterious phenomenon. What is the purpose of these efforts? This article looks at the fascinating history of government involvement in UFO-related movies and television shows.
  • Yes, she carved her initials in her desk on the floor of the state House, state Rep. Julia Hurley, R-Lenoir City, confirmed today.

    “It was like 1 in the morning on the last day of the session,” Hurley said of that late-night session in May. “I wasn’t thinking straight.”

    Hurley was responding to a recent report on a Nashville television station about the incident. The station reported several other desks also have marks on them, ranging from initials to a dollar sign.

  • MODERN civilisation may not be quite as safe as we thought. Britain’s security services have been privately warning their staff that western societies are just 48 hours from anarchy.

    MI5’s maxim is that society is “four meals away from anarchy”. In other words, the security agency believes that Britain could be quickly reduced to large-scale disorder, including looting and rioting in the event of a catastrophe that stops the supply of food.

  • Never Forget 9/11
    Religion was the cause.
  • Pollution in the Puget Sound is such a problem that a group trying to protect the ecosystem spent $27,000 in state money to make a catchy video, complete with dance steps, telling people how they can do something about it.

    Pick up dog poop.

  • He changed the menu at Polk County’s jail, directing cooks to dish up less-expensive food. He banned basketball, ordering inmates to uproot the jail’s hoops. And he changed the jail’s TV options to favor educational viewing rather than sports and violent programming.

    Now Polk Sheriff Grady Judd is taking on skivvies. His latest cost-saving measure: stop providing free underwear to male inmates.

    “There’s no state law; there’s no federal law that says we have to provide underwear in the county jail,” Judd said.

    The jail will sell white boxers for $4.48 a pair and white briefs for $2.54 a pair — to inmates who choose to wear underwear.

    Judd presented the idea to county commissioners Thursday, saying the plan would save $45,000 a year.

    “Why shouldn’t they pay like the rest of us pay?” the sheriff said. “We pay to maintain the county jail; to keep them there. Certainly they can pay their way as much as they can afford.”

    “This is the county jail; it’s not a welfare program,” he said.

  • A NASA video from a time of great optimism about space exploration. The Apollo missions were completed and the Space Shuttle program was underway. How soon before cheap and frequent flights to space would allow the construction of O’Neal colonies and mining camps on the Moon? This visionary approach calls for tiered greenhouses in space and unlimited solar power beamed back to Earth… all before the year 2000!
  • LulzSec, the group of hackers that said three weeks ago it was disbanding, claimed credit Monday for defacing Rupert Murdoch’s Sun newspaper website, while an allied group, Anonymous, claimed credit for a denial-of-service attack that brought down the website of The Times, another Murdoch paper. The Sunday Times and News International sites also appeared to be down Monday.

    “Tango down,” Anonymous said on its Twitter page about The Times. Meanwhile, late Monday, those who went to the Sun’s website were redirected to a website that looked like The Sun with a fake story that said Murdoch’s body had been found in his garden. Then they were taken to LulzSec’s Twitter page, where the group proclaimed:

    “TheSun.co.uk now redirects to our twitter feed. Hello, everyone that wanted to visit The Sun!,” then followed with this: “”We have joy, we have fun, we have messed up Murdoch’s Sun.”

  • And Los Angeles does not appear to be alone in grappling with a recent upsurge in graffiti, which is turning up in some unlikely places. A bumper crop of scrawls is blossoming in many modest-size communities across the country — in places like Florence, Ala.; Bernalillo County, N.M.; Taylors, S.C.; and in larger cities like Nashville and Portland, Ore. — even as major cities like Chicago, Denver, New York and Seattle say vigilant antigraffiti campaigns have spared them thus far.

    “It’s popped up all of a sudden in the last six months,” said Tim Sandrell, the owner of Safari Adventures in Hair in Florence. “I’ve been downtown for 10 years, and I’m really disappointed that we are seeing this kind of activity. We have a beautiful city and an historic city, and it’s really upsetting to me seeing this going on.”

  • On physical examination, the breasts were symmetrical having no nodes or retractions. In the plantar region of the patient’s left foot, there was a well-formed nipple was surrounded by areola and hair on the surface, measuring 4.0 cm in diameter, with no palpable nodes (Figs. 1 and 2). The remaining physical examination was normal, including the mammary line. Results of the following laboratory tests were normal: complete blood count, fasting serum glucose level, urine exam, electrolytes, serum urea and creatinine. No alterations were found during ultrasound of the lesion and urinary tract.
  • Ever get the heebie-jeebies at a wax museum? Feel uneasy with an anthropomorphic robot? What about playing a video game or watching an animated movie, where the human characters are pretty realistic but just not quite right and maybe a bit creepy? If yes, then you’ve probably been a visitor to what’s called the “uncanny valley.”

    The phenomenon has been described anecdotally for years, but how and why this happens is still a subject of debate in robotics, computer graphics and neuroscience. Now an international team of researchers, led by Ayse Pinar Saygin of the University of California, San Diego, has taken a peek inside the brains of people viewing videos of an uncanny android (compared to videos of a human and a robot-looking robot).

  • PRIMORDIAL instincts that drive animals to seek out salt may be governed by the same mechanism that drives drug addicts to hunt down their fix.

    Researchers deprived mice and rats of salt, then offered them salty water to drink. After killing the animals they examined gene activity in the hypothalamus, the brain’s “reward” centre. They found that gratification genes had been activated – the same genes that are active in cocaine and heroin addicts when their craving has been satisfied.

  • The cases are jarring and similar to those involving PCP in the 1970s. Some of the recent incidents include a man in Indiana who climbed a roadside flagpole and jumped into traffic, a man in Pennsylvania who broke into a monastery and stabbed a priest, and a woman in West Virginia who scratched herself “to pieces” over several days because she thought there was something under her skin.
  • In the ’60s, a lot of people were experimenting with hallucinogenic drugs including marijuana, LSD and everything in between. You had acid rock posters in San Francisco associated with the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane and groups like that.

    But my theory is that there were probably a lot of artists that didn’t necessarily want to do psychedelic-style art that were still influenced by the experience and created works that don’t necessarily look psychedelic in the stereotypical way, but may be conceptually psychedelic or have a kind of philosophical way of looking at the world.
    story.serra.maze.gi.jpg

    If you look at a lot of different styles in art of the past 50 years, you can see the influence of psychedelics, ranging from sculpture that looks very minimal like Richard Serra’s giant, spiral, mazelike structures, to something like Robert Smithson’s “Spiral Jetty,” there’s an interest in having art be experiential…

  • Jake and Dinos Chapman’s new two-part show at London’s White Cube galleries are presided over by a troupe of ghoulish Nazis with smiley-face armbands and a horde of schoolgirls with animal faces. Just two distinctive touches in an exhibition that makes a virtue of bad taste

    Warning: contains images that some people may find offensive

  • Authorities say a Colorado woman who allegedly groped a female Transportation Security Administration agent at Phoenix’s international airport is facing a felony count of sexual abuse.

    Phoenix police say 61-year-old Yukari Mihamae is accused of grabbing the left breast of the unidentified TSA agent Thursday afternoon at an airport checkpoint.

    TSA staff say Mihamae refused to be go through passenger screening and became argumentative before she squeezed and twisted the agent’s breast with both hands.

  • Your laptop, with all its sensitive data and/or ill-gotten gains, is about to be confiscated by the authorities, who are banging on the door. There’s no time to reformat it—you’ve got to destroy it, fast.

    This sticker will help you do just that, provided you’ve a drill by your side. (And which self-respecting cyber criminal wouldn’t?)

    Meant to be placed directly above your laptop’s hard disk, the sticker sports a crosshair with which you can accurately destroy any digital evidence the cops are after.

    Randy Sarafan, who created the stickers, advises to “research the build of your laptop and locate the position of your hard drive”.

  • While Congress and the President fight it out over the debt ceiling and all of America quietly shudders over whether our economy will completely default on itself, at least one industry still hums along without a care in the world. Amidst a fiscal crisis of apparently apocalyptic proportions, where the GOP demands dollar for dollar spending cuts from the budget in order to raise our debt limit, the Pentagon asked Congress for $264 million to cover part of a $771 million overrun on the F-35 program. The Hill reports Republican Senator John McCain let the news slip via Twitter, saying “Congress notified that first F-35 jets have cost overruns of $771M. Outrageous! Pentagon asking for $264M down payment now. Disgraceful.”
  • On Thursday, Defense Department extreme technology arm Darpa unveiled its Social Media in Strategic Communication (SMISC) program. It’s an attempt to get better at both detecting and conducting propaganda campaigns on social media. SMISC has two goals. First, the program needs to help the military better understand what’s going on in social media in real time — particularly in areas where troops are deployed. Second, Darpa wants SMISC to help the military play the social media propaganda game itself.

    This is more than just checking the trending topics on Twitter. The Defense Department wants to deeply grok social media dynamics. So SMISC algorithms will be aimed at discovering and tracking the “formation, development and spread of ideas and concepts (memes)” on social media, according to Darpa’s announcement.

  • Cut into the flesh with nails and makeshift blades, rubbed into the wounds with a mixture of melted black rubber seals, ground red brick, trash bins, batteries, and saliva — these tattoos are forbidden in the South African prison system. Despite the severe penalties and permanent stigma, tattooing persists. For her photo study Life After, Cape Town photographer Araminta de Clermont sought out former inmates of “Numbers” prison gangs who were struggling for acceptance and survival since being released after years, sometimes decades of incarceration and shot their portraits in their current environment. Faces. Signs. A sailor’s grave. A note to a deceased mother, inked across the forehead. These full body and facial tattoos serve as narratives of crime history and life struggle. See the compelling images in our gallery.
  • A bill that seeks to clamp down on online child pornography is raising some alarms in the tech and privacy communities because of a provision that would require Internet service providers to store users’ IP addresses for 18 months.

    The legislation, spearheaded by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), would require Internet providers and possibly other entities to retain that information to aid law enforcement investigations of child exploitation.

    The bill already has some notable support, namely from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

    However, it also faces tough criticism from tech companies and public interest groups, which believe the section on data retention is too broad, threatens Web users’ privacy and may not accomplish its stated goal of cracking down on child pornography.

  • Timothy McVeigh? The V-Tech Shooter? The Columbine Killers? John Hinkley Junior? Mark David Chapman? Sirhan Sirhan? Harvey Lee Oswald? These people have significantly impacted our lives, all MK Ultra victims.
  • Officials are pushing for a settlement with mortgage companies that, reports Shahien Nasiripour of The Huffington Post, “would broadly absolve the firms of wrongdoing in exchange for penalties reaching $30 billion and assurances that the firms will adhere to better practices.”

    Why the rush to settle? As far as I can tell, there are two principal arguments being made for letting the banks off easy. The first is the claim that resolving the mortgage mess quickly is the key to getting the housing market back on its feet. The second, less explicitly stated, is the claim that getting tough with the banks would undermine broader prospects for recovery.

    Neither of these arguments makes much sense.

  • Sean Hoare, the former News of the World showbiz reporter who was the first named journalist to allege Andy Coulson was aware of phone hacking by his staff, has been found dead, the Guardian has learned.

    Hoare, who worked on the Sun and the News of the World with Coulson before being dismissed for drink and drugs problems, is said to have been found dead at his Watford home.

    Hertfordshire police would not confirm his identity, but the force said in a statement: “At 10.40am today [Monday 18 July] police were called to Langley Road, Watford, following the concerns for the welfare of a man who lives at an address on the street. Upon police and ambulance arrival at a property, the body of a man was found. The man was pronounced dead at the scene shortly after.

    “The death is currently being treated as unexplained, but not thought to be suspicious. Police investigations into this incident are ongoing.”

  • Two men face animal cruelty charges after a call reporting crying coming from a car led officers to discover several animals inside.

    Miami police said officers were dispatched to Northwest 37th Avenue and Northwest Seventh Street on Monday after receiving a report that someone had heard what they thought was a baby crying in a car parked there.

    The officers found no child in the car, but they did find several animals, including goats, roosters, pigeons, guinea pigs and ducks.

    Police said one of the goats died later that day, but they did not elaborate on the animal’s cause of death.

  • Tokyo Electric Power Co. is rushing to install a cover over a building at its crippled Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant to shield it from wind and rain as Typhoon Ma-on approaches Japan’s coast from the south.
  • BP reported yet another pipeline leak at its Alaskan oilfields, frustrating the oil giant’s attempts to rebuild its reputation after the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

    BP said on Monday that a pipeline at its 30,000 barrel per day Lisburne field, which is currently closed for maintenance, ruptured during testing and spilled a mixture of methanol and oily water onto the tundra.

    The London-based company has a long history of oil spills at its Alaskan pipelines – accidents which have hurt its public image in the U.S., where around 40 percent of its assets are based.

  • AUTHORITIES are investigating the theft of 64 missile warheads from a train transporting military equipment to Bulgaria.

    Interior ministry spokesman Marius Militaru said Sunday the components are not dangerous on their own – only when integrated into missile systems. Prosecutors said on nday they are investigating the theft.

    Officials did not respond to inquiries regarding if the warheads contained explosives.

    Railway workers on Saturday noticed the seals on a carriage door were broken, and it was not properly closed when the train reached Giurgiu, a Danube port that borders Bulgaria.

  • The main stage at the Ottawa Bluefest came crashing down Sunday right in the middle of a Cheap Trick set, injuring 4 people including one in serious condition.

    Winds apparently picked up around 8 p.m. EDT, causing the stage to seemingly fold in on itself and sending the band members quickly off their feet. All members of the band reportedly emerged unharmed.

  • a Broward Sheriff’s Office deputy went to a townhouse at 738 SW 107th Ave. to serve an eviction notice about 11 a.m.

    The real estate agent for the property confirmed the man inside the home was Allen Gauntlett, 52, who had lost the home to foreclosure after owing $10,000 in homeowners’ dues and fees.

    Police officers said Gauntlett would not come out of the home, and the deputy called for backup.

    “As we were sending a unit to that location, the BSO deputy then called again and said that the subject was setting the house on fire,” said Sgt. John Gazzano, of the Pembroke Pines Police Department.

    “They said he put gasoline in his whole house and set it on fire, and the windows are all burned out, and the door has burnout around it,” said neighbor Kara Burbano.

    Police said Gauntlett walked out of the burning house and got into a fight with officers, so the officers shot him.

  • Holding the butcher knife, Bangs allegedly ordered the teen to take off his clothes and lie down. Bangs allegedly burned a rubber glove over the teen, letting it drip onto him and burning his abdomen, according to police.

    Bangs accused the teen of being “a snitch,” according to the police report.

    After dripping the burning rubber on the teen, Ismael then allegedly held a lighter close to the teen’s lips and told him not to blow it out or he would cut him. He also stuck paper up the teen’s nostrils and lit it, again telling him not to blow it out. The teen suffered burns on his lips, according to the report.

    Ismael then allegedly applied a large amount of glue to the teen’s lips, gluing them together. He also used a lighter to heat up the blade of a knife and applied it to the victim’s shoulder “numerous times,” causing several burn injuries.

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File under Graffiti, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG, SeMeN SPeRmS Links 'o Death, Sex

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on July 19, 2011

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Broke Dicks

  • Like everything these days, great care must be taken to ensure that as few people as possible are offended by anything. Google Instant is no exception. Somewhere within Google there exists a master list of “bad words” and evil concepts that Google Instant is programmed to not act upon, lest someone see something offensive in the instant results… even if that’s exactly what they typed into the search bar. We call it Google Blacklist.
  • Oh yes, they did!
  • More than 400 Norwin High School seniors got an eyeful Friday morning when pornographic photos appeared on a giant screen during a presentation on the importance of donating blood, triggering awkward laughter, a police investigation and an apology from school officials. The images — described by students as gay pornography — were on a flash drive belonging to a Central Blood Bank employee who was about to deliver a PowerPoint presentation to the entire senior class. Assistant Principal Tim Kotch plugged the drive into a computer, clicked on a file, and several photos appeared.
  • According to the Justice Department’s report, FBI officials, including the Pittsburgh office’s top lawyer, engaged in distinctly COINTELPRO-style tactics after the American Civil Liberties Union sued for the release of documents relating to the surveillance. Boiled down to their essence, those tactics involved officials generating post-dated “routing slips” and other paper to create a terrorism threat that didn’t exist. Or as the inspector general put it, the FBI’s elaborate, “after-the-fact reconstruction” of the Pittsburgh events, designed to fabricate a counter-terrorism rationale for the rookie’s surveillance mission, “was not corroborated by any witnesses or contemporaneous documents.” It was on the basis of their fabrication, moreover, that FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III gave “inaccurate and misleading” testimony to Congress, the IG said.
  • The better option, though, is to use a camera with networking capabilities. We’re increasingly seeing spy movies-come-to-life cameras like this Bluetooth device from Looxcie, which you wear over your ear and lets you instantly email video, but the same technology is also standard now in most smart phones. The ability to store audio or video off site—to email it to friends (or yourself), or to upload it to social networking sites—is becoming more and more accessible. And it’s a pretty powerful check on government, as shown by the Iran demonstrations, the Grant shooting, and the alleged police abuses shown in hundreds of videos uploaded to video sharing sites.
  • The anonymous pro-piracy group 4Chan this weekend propagated a series of denial-of-service attacks against a number of high-profile trade associations and anti-piracy groups in this country and abroad that succeeded in interrupting internet service for long periods of time. The attacks were in retribution for similar DDoS attacks perpetrated by Aiplex, an Indian anti-piracy group that admitted in early September that new, more aggressive tactics were being attempted on behalf of movie industry clients, which include many Bollywood studios but also Fox STAR Studios, which is owned by 20th Century Fox. Those attacks targeted The Pirate Bay and other file-sharing sites.
  • Case in point: evercookie, an open source JavaScript API by developer Samy Kamkar. When implemented by a website, evercookie stores a user ID and cookie data in not two, not three, but eight different places—with more on the way. Among them are your standard HTTP cookies, Flash cookies, RGB values of force-cached PNGs, your Web history, and a smattering of HTML5 storage features. In addition, Silverlight Storage and Java are apparently on the way. So, when you delete the cookie in one, three, or five places, evercookie can dip into one of its many other repositories to poll your user ID and restore the data tracking cookies. It works cross-browser, too—if the Local Shared Object cookie is intact, evercookie can spread to whatever other browsers you choose to use on the same machine. Since most users are barely aware of these storage methods, it’s unlikely that users will ever delete all of them.
  • What exactly is broken penis syndrome? It’s what we call penile fracture. It is a severe form of bending injury to the erect penis that occurs when a membrane called the tunica albuginea tears. The tunica albuginea surrounds the corpora cavernosa, specialized spongy tissue in the core of the penis that fills up with blood during an erection. When the tunica albuginea tears, the blood that is normally confined to this space leaks out into other tissues. You get bruising and swelling. What are the signs of penile fracture? Usually there will be a popping sound. If someone has severe pain (in the penis), especially associated with bruising, swelling and loss of erection, he should seek emergency care.
  • By the time I strolled into the emergency department, the young man’s member had come to resemble a hybridized sausage having the shiny, soft capsule of a fine Wisconsin bratwurst and the puffy corpus and purple coloration of a morcilla fresh from the Pampas. By the general standards of blunt penis trauma — from the superficial bruising from forcibly engaging a clarinet to the bleeding urethra of a pincing dresser drawer — this was somewhat unusual.
  • The modern West’s first recorded encounter with the Polynesian practice of tattowing dates from 1769, when Joseph Banks—a naturalist aboard the British ship Endeavour—watched a 12-year-old girl (the “patient,” he called her, though modern aficionados might prefer the term “collector”) being extensively adorned. Banks’ description is brief but harrowing: “It was done with a large instrument about 2 inches long containing about 30 teeth,” he wrote in his journal. “Every stroke…drew blood.” The girl wailed and writhed but two women held her down, occasionally beating her. The agony lasted more than an hour.
  • Rhodes noted that people fear the blast and radiation effects of atomic bombs, but it’s really the fires that are most destructive. The fireball ignites everything far beyond the blast effects. As a result, nuclear winter remains a threat. Former researchers of nuclear winter used sophisticated new climate models to assess what would happen if, say, there was an exchange of 100 Hiroshima-sized bombs (1.5 kilotons) between India and Pakistan. The smoke clouds would disrupt the weather long enough to collapse some agriculture, leading to starvation of as many as a bilion people.
  • Leonard Skinner, arguably the most influential high school gym teacher in American popular culture, whose enforcement of a draconian classroom policy against long hair inspired some of his students to name their Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, has died
  • Be on the lookout, warn the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Counterterrorism Center, for such “indicators of possible terrorist activity” as “behavior that could indicate participation in surveillance of potential targets,” “travel or interest in traveling overseas to attend violent extremist institutions or paramilitary camps,” or checking out “websites and reading materials that advocate violence and then initiating action in support of this activity.” See something? Say something!
  • As one Senator, Clarence Dill, noted in support of the ban: In his experience, the dial phone “could not be more awkward than it is. One has to use both hands to dial; he must be in a position where there is good light, day or night, in order to see the number; and if he happens to turn the dial not quite far enough, then he gets a wrong connection.” Is it any wonder that some of us think that it’s not a good idea for elected officials to determine the relative merits of technology?
  • When you’re shopping for stolen credit and debit cards online, there are so many choices these days. A glut of stolen data — combined with innovation and cutthroat competition among vendors — is conspiring to keep prices for stolen account numbers exceptionally low. Even so, many readers probably have no idea that their credit card information is worth only about $1.50 on the black market. Don’t you just hate it, though, when online stores nickel and dime you to death? I started to get that chintzy vibe when I opened an account at rock3d.cc, one of many sites where one can buy stolen Visa, MasterCard, Discover and Amex card information. The purloined card numbers — no doubt lifted from PCs infected with data-stealing malware like the ZeuS Trojan — fetch $1.50 for U.S. accounts, and $4 (USD) for accounts belonging to U.K. residents.
  • The folks over at Open Acta Mexico sent over their report on an open information meeting at the Ministry of the Economy in Mexico about ACTA last week. There were two oddities that they called attention to. The first is that there was an MPAA representative at the meeting, who apparently asked whether or not ACTA could be used to block access to “damaging” sites like Wikileaks. As the Open Acta Mexico people asked, what does Wikileaks have to do with movies? It seems like an interesting question, though, and I’m assuming that the MPAA is using Wikileaks as an example of a site they deem “dangerous” to get the idea across, so that later when they designate other sites (say… The Pirate Bay….) as dangerous, they can use this to make the case it should be blocked. Nice to see the MPAA is so blatant about using copyright for censorship…
  • As Mexicans celebrate the 200th anniversary of their independence from Spain, evoking a history of resistance against colonialism, a disturbing development unfolds on the country’s northern border: a fleet of US Predator B drones has been deployed on constant patrol.
  • Ridge Meadows RCMP today admitted they were helpless in attempting to get a video removed from the internet of what investigators called the appalling gang rape of a 16-year-old girl by seven males at a rave early Saturday.
  • Jews throughout Williamsburg snapped up caffeine suppositories today, hours before the start of the Yom Kippur fast that would deprive them of the jolt — and hunger suppression — that coffee typically provides. The day-long fast is the centerpiece of the holiest day on the Jewish calendar — but some religious Jews see a Talmudic loophole that allows them to ingest their daily dose of caffeine, albeit through a different orifice.
  • The scientists looked for the residue these drugs leave behind in human urine after they have been taken, and which end up in the water. The results showed the presence of eight kinds of drugs, particularly cocaine and ecstasy, SINC said. “The results confirm the presence of drugs such as cocaine, amphetamines, codeine, morphine and cannabis in the surface waters … at levels ranging between 0.06 and 78.78 nanogrammes per litre,” said Yolanda Pico, lead author of the study.
  • Italian monetary authorities said Tuesday that they had impounded $30 million from the Vatican bank and placed its top two officers under investigation in connection with a money-laundering inquiry. The announcement amounted to another potential storm confronting the papacy of Benedict XVI, who is struggling with the effects of a priestly abuse scandal.
  • A UN probe said Wednesday there was “clear evidence to support prosecutions” against Israel for “willful killing” and torture committed when its troops stormed a Gaza-bound aid flotilla in May. In a scathing report, it also threw out Israel’s argument that activists on the aid ship were violent thereby justifying the decision by Israeli soldiers to open fire, adding that some were the victim of actions “consistent with…summary execution.”

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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on September 23, 2010

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Smoke ‘Em If You Got ‘Em

  • Onionskin Cloud Marble Sold At Auction For $4,025.00
  • On average, victims spent between three and eight hours a day occupied with the perceived smells, with 80 percent sniffing themselves, 68 percent excessively showering and 50 percent changing clothes multiple times. Sufferers trying to quell the scents turned to perfume (90 percent), gum (60 percent) and deodorant or mints (55 percent each), to no avail.
  • University of Reading researcher Mark Gasson has become the first human known to be infected by a computer virus. The virus, infecting a chip implanted in Gasson’s hand, passed into a laboratory computer. From there, the infection could have spread into other computer chips found in building access cards.
  • The words are actually some borrowed lyrics from the Detroit-based Electric Six rock band and its song “Danger! High Voltage.”
  • The world faces the nightmare possibility of fishless oceans by 2050 without fundamental restructuring of the fishing industry, UN experts said Monday. “If the various estimates we have received… come true, then we are in the situation where 40 years down the line we, effectively, are out of fish,” Pavan Sukhdev, head of the UN Environment Program’s green economy initiative, told journalists in New York.
  • A landmark case that pushed through laws banning the drug mephedrone – popularly known as “miaow miaow” – has come under strong criticism. A toxicology report of the two teenagers thought to have died from the drug showed neither had actually taken it. “Legal high kills two teens,” cried the Daily Express earlier this year. There followed a steady stream of stories in the UK media of the dangers of the then little known “legal high”. The government subsequently rushed through an emergency ban on the drug and related compounds that became law in early April. Although implicated in 27 deaths, a report by the International Centre for Drug Policy at University College London found it to be a contributing factor in just one. Today, this knee-jerk reaction came under further criticism following the negative toxicology tests.
  • An Englewood woman was shocked when her new driver’s license sent in the mail listed her address as ‘Eat Ass.’
  • Healless, a certified nurse’s assistant at Fair Oaks Health Care Center in Crystal Lake, allegedly would enter the patient’s room, roll her on her side, then poke holes in her fentanyl patch with a safety pin, Crystal Lake Deputy Police Chief Eugene Lowery said. The woman, who was mentally and physically incapacitated, didn’t realize what he was doing, police said. Healless would allegedly squeeze the fentanyl patch so the drug, a narcotic painkiller given to people in constant pain, would ooze out of the patch, and then he’d lick it off his fingers.
  • Devotees claim that ‘vodka eyeballing’ induces drunkenness faster than drinking it can, because it passes easily through the mucous membrane and enters the bloodstream directly through veins at the back of the eye, although some experts are sceptical about the claims and believe that since those who do it are usually already drunk, they simply convince themselves that it’s having such an effect.
  • He got his wave on!
  • He left the room and then returned with an aerosol can and cigarette lighter. Brooks “sprayed the contents of the can while holding a lighter to the fumes creating a sort of flame thrower” and burned the side of Weisman’s face to force him to admit he was a cop, reports state.
  • A court has ordered the arrest of a Polish priest suspected of sexually abusing a teenager in a Rio de Janeiro suburb and turning his parish home into what the judge described as an “erotic dungeon” for sex with adolescents, authorities said Friday. State prosecutors have accused Marcin Michael Strachanowski, 44, of handcuffing the 16-year-old former altar boy to a bed three years ago in the parish house where the priest lived and threatening to kill the youth if he spoke of the abuse. “I already know the flowers I will place on your coffin,” Strachanowski warned, according to prosecutors.
  • After the earthquake, guards roughed up the noisiest inmates and consolidated them into cells so crowded their limbs tangled, former prisoners said. With aftershocks jangling nerves, the inmates slept in shifts on the ground, used buckets for toilets and plotted their escape. The escape plan, set in motion on Jan. 19 by an attack on a guard, proved disastrous. With Haitian and United Nations police officers encircling the prison, the detainees could not get out. For hours, they rampaged, hacking up doors and burning records, until tear gas finally overwhelmed them. In the end, after the Haitian police stormed the compound, dozens of inmates lay dead and wounded, their bodies strewn through the courtyard and crumpled inside cells. The prison smoldered, a blood-splattered mess.
  • …A silver cup that offers a rare glimpse into the world of sex in ancient Rome. The cup features such explicit images of homosexual acts that it was once banned from America and museums refused to buy it. The Warren Cup is now one of the British Museum’s better known objects.
  • Ardi’s youth is the extreme of a disturbing trend. Data from the Central Statistics Agency showed 25 per cent of Indonesian children aged three to 15 have tried cigarettes, with 3.2 per cent of those active smokers. The percentage of five to nine year olds lighting up increased from 0.4 per cent in 2001 to 2.8 per cent in 2004, the agency reported.
  • Texas officers ultimately spent hours laboring to tag and remove up to 400 plants from a city park, discovering only after a battery of tests that they had been sweating over mere Horse Mint, a member of the mint family — effectively turning their ambitious drug bust into mere yard work.

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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on June 3, 2010

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