File under SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG
Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on August 11, 2014
Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on February 8, 2012
We have reported in the past an alarming suicide rate among farmers in India that is connected to the failure of American GMO (genetically modified organism) cotton seeds.
Monsanto, the U.S. company responsible for Agent Orange, a cancer-causing chemical sprayed on the jungles of Vietnam, is now in the GMO food and seed business.
Monsanto stands accused of having an international monopoly of the notorious bio-engineered Bt cotton seeds.
Advocates for the agricultural industry say they never dreamed of the tragedy to come, when a 2005 decision was announced to allow the seeds in India.
Now an agrarian crisis has hit Maharashtra itself thanks to the Monsanto program.
Farmers are buying 11 packets of 450 gm per hectare as per the company’s guide for the recommended “population method” but the sudden demand and ill-managed Indian sub agents have brought the company big trouble as 50% of the Bt cotton seeds failed to germinate even after it’s second sowing.
Consider the fact that millions of people read this stuff. Millions of people continue to tolerate a list of probably sold-out tour dates with a generic compliment for each city. Then consider the fact that each of the tweets listed above was re-tweeted well over one hundred times. This is worse than DJ’s retweeting people saying they’re “killing it” at some Vegas pool party. This is worse than Diddy’s (Swag’s?) ceaseless positivity.
Aside from his incessant self-congratulating and bugling, there’s another disappointing revelation Wayne’s Twitter gave us: He’s a horrible bandwagon fan.
The United States is viewed less favorably in much of the Arab world today than it was during the final year of the Bush administration, and President Obama is less popular in the region than Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, according to a poll released today by the Arab American Institute, a nonpartisan research and advocacy group.
Attitudes towards the US president and the United States as a whole have been growing increasingly negative over the past ten years due to the invasion of Iraq, outrage over Guantanamo Bay, and continued frustration over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, said James Zogby, president of the Arab American Institute, which has been tracking attitudes for a decade.
But the current poll is striking in that is illustrates how far Obama’s favorability has fallen in the region, after an initial optimistic spike when he took office.
“It’s because expectations were created that were not met,” Zogby said.
“The primary concern is that methane gas could leak into one or both of the school buildings, potentially causing an explosion,” he said. “A buildup of methane gas was one of the contributing factors that caused the explosion at the Upper Big Branch mine in Montcoal, W.Va., last spring, which killed 29 mine workers. I think it goes without saying that middle and high school students shouldn’t be exposed to a similar threat.”
Nelson continued, “A secondary concern is subsidence –- or the downward shift of the earth’s surface that can occur where underground coal mining takes place. In a worst-case scenario, this could endanger students and faculty in the schools. At bare minimum, it could cause major damage to the schools’ facilities.”
Newly appointed US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta told American troops in Baghdad on Monday that 9/11 was the reason they were in Iraq, before he was quickly corrected by his spokesman.
“The reason you guys are here is because of 9/11. The US got attacked and 3,000 human beings got killed because of Al-Qaeda,” Panetta told about 150 soldiers at the Camp Victory US base.
“We’ve been fighting as a result of that,” he said.
The administration of former US President George W. Bush had hastily linked Saddam Hussein, the ousted Iraqi dictator, to the 9/11 attacks.
That was one of the justifications for the 2003 US-led invasion, but the argument has since been widely dismissed.
Doug Wilson, Panetta’s spokesman, quickly jumped in after his boss, who just took office on July 1, made the statement.
“I don’t think he’s getting into the argument of 2002-2003,” as the reason for the Iraq invasion, Wilson he told reporters, adding that his boss was “a plain-spoken secretary.”
A Minnesota hacker prosecutors described as a “depraved criminal” was handed an 18-year prison term Tuesday for unleashing a vendetta of cyberterror that turned his neighbors’ lives into a living nightmare.
Barry Ardolf, 46, repeatedly hacked into his next-door neighbors’ Wi-Fi network in 2009, and used it to try and frame them for child pornography, sexual harassment, various kinds of professional misconduct and to send threatening e-mail to politicians, including Vice President Joe Biden.
His motive was to get back at his new neighbors after they told the police he’d kissed their 4-year-old son on the lips.
The lawsuit includes a document, sent to ARTINFO in an email, with 150 examples of McGinley’s work as compared to Gordon’s, dissecting what Gordon sees as visual thefts. Similarities include such tropes as “boy looking upward, mouth slightly open in an expression of awe,” and “subject’s left arm is in the air angling above his head.”
Taken individually, it’s hard to see the similarities as anything but incidental — artists can’t copyright a pose any more than they can copyright balloon dogs. From the document, it’s clear that McGinley’s style is certainly similar to Gordon’s, but that is inevitable in tight-knit artistic milieus. She claims that McGinley took the “style, idea, composition, backgrounds, foregrounds, expressions, gestures” of her work, but none of the image comparisons bear up to the designation of exact copy.
Dr. David Ludwig, an obesity specialist at Harvard-affiliated Children’s Hospital Boston, is arguing that parents should lose custody of obese children.
State intervention “ideally will support not just the child but the whole family, with the goal of reuniting child and family as soon as possible,” Ludwig told The Associated Press. “That may require instruction on parenting.”
First, some context: In May, the FTC gave a company called Social Intelligence the green light to run background checks of your Internet and social media history. The media made a big hulabaloo out of the ruling. And it largely got two important facts wrong.
Contrary to initial reports, Social Intelligence doesn’t store seven years worth of your social data. Rather it looks at up to seven years of your history, and stores nothing.
The second was the idea that it was looking for boozy or embarrassing photos of you to pass along to your employer. In fact it screens for just a handful of things: aggressive or violent acts or assertions, unlawful activity, discriminatory activity (for example, making racist statements), and sexually explicit activity. And it doesn’t pass on identifiable photos of you at all. In other words, your drunken kegstand photos are probably fine as long as you’re not wearing a T-shirt with a swastika or naked from the waist down.
Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on July 14, 2011
While the Transportation Security Administration may or may not be making old ladies take off their Depends during screening, there’s this: A Nigerian man managed to board a Los Angeles-bound flight at JFK Airport without a valid boarding pass or valid identification. Olajide Olwaseun Noibi used a fake ID and an expired boarding pass to get onto Virgin America Flight 415.
WCBS 2 reports, “The FBI says Noibi sat in the main cabin and when a flight attendant asked him to show his boarding pass, he produced the expired pass. Noibi was still allowed to get off the plane when it landed in Los Angeles.” Great! And how did Noibi get the pass?
Officer Ignatius Hills said he jumped out of the rental truck after the shooting stopped and scanned the blood-covered bodies on the ground – civilians who had allegedly shot at the police moments earlier – and wondered aloud where their guns were.
Sgt. Kenneth Bowen heard him and answered “that he had kicked the guns off the bridge,” Hills told jurors in a New Orleans courtroom on Thursday.
So began a web of deceit, federal prosecutors say, that stretched for years after the slaying of two civilians by police in the chaotic aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Four others were injured in the September 2005 shooting.
Entertainment industry lobby groups often describe file-sharers as thieves who refuse to pay for any type of digital content. But not everyone agrees with this view. Swedish telecom giant Ericsson sees copyright abuse as the underlying cause of the piracy problem. In a brilliant article, Rene Summer, Director of Government and Industry Relations at Ericsson, explains how copyright holders themselves actually breed pirates by clinging to outdated business methods.
ericssonWhen it comes to discussing file-sharing and copyright-related issues, extremists often make a sensible debate impossible. The most vocal rightsholder groups would ideally turn the Internet into a virtual police state, and at the other end of the spectrum there are groups that want to abolish copyright entirely.
A doctor involved in horrific torture by Saddam Hussein’s henchmen is working in British hospitals.
In an astonishing immigration scandal, border officials have allowed the suspected war criminal to treat thousands of British patients.
Dr Mohammed Kassim Al-Byati was given a permit to work as a doctor in the NHS by the Labour government in 2004.
Is there a formula for a hit song?
What if we knew, for example, that 80% of the Billboard Hot 100 number one singles from 1960-2010 are sung in a major key with an average of 135 beats per minute, that they all follow a I-III-IV chord progression in 4/4 time signature, and that they all follow a “verse-verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-chorus” sequence structure? What would this mean for the music industry? For artists and record producers? Would this teach us things about human auditory preferences? Or how these preferences have been manufactured and masterfully fine-tuned over the past half century by cunning L.A. record execs?
Says hacktivist group’s campaign against public websites like the US Senate, CIA, and more recently, the Arizona Police Dept, prove a “lawless Internet” is not a “good thing,” and that legislation like the PROTECT IP Act that would mandate DNS filtering of “rogue sites” is needed to restore order.
Leave it to the RIAA to rehash the usual bait-and-switch tactics of old when it comes to convincing the public that its own selfish commercial interests are really for the public good.
Over the course of the one-year study, human subjects had their brain activity scanned using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while they performed one of three hand movements: grasping the top of an object, grasping the bottom of the object, or simply reaching out and touching the object. The team found that by using the signals from many brain regions, they could predict, better than chance, which of the actions the volunteer was merely intending to do, seconds later.
“Neuroimaging allows us to look at how action planning unfolds within human brain areas without having to insert electrodes directly into the human brain. This is obviously far less intrusive,” explains Western Psychology professor Jody Culham, who was the paper’s senior author.
Games need BLUE SKIES! Games need BRIGHT YELLOW SUNS! Games need RED AND BLUE THINGS in them! We want to play in a HAPPY PRETEND LAND, not a shit version of an American slum full of mixed-race gangsters wearing licensed sportswear!
We want to COLLECT BANANAS FROM MAGIC CASTLES not earn respect from fictional gang leaders! We want to stun enemies with BOUNCE ATTACKS, not shoot them in unrealistic and shoddy drive-bys!
We want to restore our health by COLLECTING ROAST CHICKEN, not by syringing drugs into the only vein we can still find! Games have gone SHIT and DARK and RUBBISH and WE WANT THEM BACK!
We want music that goes PLINKY-PLINK AND DOOPY-DOO not “motherfucking west coast mother fucker, y’all”! We want to fight WEIRD MONSTERS not drug-dealing criminals!
Make games look like games again! Support the Blue Sky In Games Campaign NOW!
Wikileaks is suffering under a banking blockade. They made a Mastercard commercial in response:
Censorship, like everything else in the West, has been privatized.
For six months, five major US financial institutions, VISA, MasterCard, PayPal, Western Union and the Bank of America have tried to economically strangle WikiLeaks as a result of political pressure from Washington. The attack has blocked over 90% of donations, costing some $15M in lost revenue. The attack is entirely outside of any due process or rule of law. In fact, in the only formal review to occur, US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner found, on January 12, that there were no lawful grounds to add WikiLeaks to a financial blockade.
Former International Monetary Fund chief, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, has walked out of court free without bail. His release came after prosecutors raised doubts over the credibility of the hotel housekeeper who has accused him of sexual assault.
Prosecutors agreed to release the former IMF head on his own recognizance, meaning he must simply promise to appear in court.
Prosecutors acknowledged that there were significant credibility issues with the hotel housekeeper who accused Strauss-Kahn of trying to rape her in May in New York.
Though the charges against Strauss-Kahn have not been reduced, the move signals that prosecutors do not believe the accusations are as iron-clad as they once seemed.
By harnessing a new sphere of science called “lovotics”, Hooman Samani, an artificial intelligence researcher at the Social Robotics Lab at the National University of Singapore, believes it is possible to engineer love between humans and robots.
Across 11 research papers, Samani has outlined — and begun to develop — an extremely complex artificial intelligence that simulates psychological and biological systems behind human love. To do this, Samani’s robots are equipped with artificial versions of the human “love” hormones — Oxytocin, Dopamine, Seratonin, and Endorphin — that can increase or decrease, depending on their state of love. On a psychological level, by using MRI scans of human brains to mirror the psychology of love, the robots are also equipped with an artificial intelligence that tracks their “affective state”; their level of affection for their human lover.
Scientists from France and Scotland recorded the aquatic animal “singing” at up to 99.2 decibels, the equivalent of listening to a loud orchestra play while sitting in the front row.
The insect makes the sound by rubbing its penis against its abdomen in a process known as “stridulation”.
Researchers say the song is a courtship display performed to attract a mate.
Lots of ants practise a rudimentary form of agriculture. Some are gardeners, gathering leaf fragments on which they cultivate a crop of tasty fungus. Others are dairymaids, “milking” the sweet excretion known as honeydew from aphids, scale insects and other related insects.
But the Melissotarsus ants of continental Africa and Madagascar are special. If biologists’ best guess proves correct, these ants raise their insect herds for meat, not milk – the first example of meat farmers other than humans. And that’s not all. The insects they cultivate may be the best example of true domestication outside of our crop plants.
Pottawattamie County officials said a half-mile stretch of the Vanmann #30 levee was mechanically excavated and then lowered by using explosives. The private levee is just north of the Boyer Chute National Wildlife Refuge, northwest of Honey Creek.
So far, emergency management officials said they’ve seen no damage as a result of the levee breach, but they have fielded plenty of phone calls about it.
Emergency Management Coordinator Jeff Theulen said he was alerted Friday morning that the levee may have been in the process of being intentionally breached. About 20 minutes later, officials said they received calls from people wanting to know why levees were being blown up. One caller claimed to have witnessed the explosion.
Pottawattamie County officials said no government entity had anything to do with the detonation, and they did not have advance notice from the people responsible for the breach.
A baboon may have escaped from the Jackson, New Jersey Six Flags amusement park and is now roaming New Jersey neighborhoods according to an MSNBC and AP report.
The baboon in question was seen on Thursday by a woman who said it was sitting on her back porch in Jackson, no mention if it was sipping a lemonade.
That same day the baboon was spotted near Interstate 195 by a driver. There was no confirmation if the baboon had his thumb up or held a sign “Africa or bust”.
Authorities believe it could have fled from Jackson’s Six Flags Great Adventure’s Monkey Jungle, which contains (contained?) 150 baboons.
It was an open secret that Britain’s decision to back nuclear power in 2006 was pushed through government by a cosy group of industrialists and others close to Tony Blair, and that a full debate about the full costs, safety and potential impact on future generations was suppressed.
But the release of 80 emails showing that in the days after the Fukushima accident not one but two government departments were working with nuclear companies to spin one of the biggest industrial catastrophes of the last 50 years, even as people were dying and a vast area was being made uninhabitable, is shocking.
What the emails shows is a weak government, captured by a powerful industry colluding to at least misinform and very probably lie to the public and the media. When the emails were sent, no one, least of all the industry and its friends in and out of government, had any idea how serious the situation at Fukushima was or might become.
British government officials approached nuclear companies to draw up a co-ordinated public relations strategy to play down the Fukushima nuclear accident just two days after the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and before the extent of the radiation leak was known.
Internal emails seen by the Guardian show how the business and energy departments worked closely behind the scenes with the multinational companies EDF Energy, Areva and Westinghouse to try to ensure the accident did not derail their plans for a new generation of nuclear stations in the UK.
A childless French couple have adopted a 13-year-old female gorilla named Digit.
The gorilla spends the day at the Saint Martin la Plaine Zoo, before going home with zookeepers Pierre and Elianne Thivillon.
Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on July 2, 2011
A TSA agent allegedly allowed a suspected ‘drug kingpin’ to pass through security at Buffalo Airport under an alias so he could buy cannabis.
Minnetta Walker, 43, a behavioural detection officer, is also accused of helping other drugs traffickers evade scans and searches to take cash – but not drugs – through the airport in Western New York.
She was charged yesterday along with Derek Frank, the alleged dealer prosecutors say she worked with.
The Selva Pascuala mural, in a cave near the town of Villar del Humo, is dominated by a bull. But it is a row of 13 small mushroom-like objects that interests Brian Akers at Pasco-Hernando Community College in New Port Richey, Florida, and Gaston Guzman at the Ecological Institute of Xalapa in Mexico. They believe that the objects are the fungi Psilocybe hispanica, a local species with hallucinogenic properties.
Like the objects depicted in the mural, P. hispanica has a bell-shaped cap topped with a dome, and lacks an annulus – a ring around the stalk. “Its stalks also vary from straight to sinuous, as they do in the mural,” says Akers.
This isn’t the oldest prehistoric painting thought to depict magic mushrooms, though. An Algerian mural that may show the species Psilocybe mairei is 7000 to 9000 years old.
French police have found jewellery worth €18 million hidden in a sewer in Paris, three years after one of the most audacious robberies in French history.
The jewels were stolen in 2008 in what the New York Times called a “brazen and meticulously planned robbery” from a store just off the Champs Elysee, involving four or five thieves – two of them dressed as women – who walked off with €80 million worth of jewels as Christmas shoppers milled around
The administration that promised more openness with government information has instead taken a tougher stance on whistle-blowing than any other White House in the last four decades.
Since taking office, President Barack Obama’s Department of Justice has filed criminal charges in five separate cases involving unauthorized distribution of classified national security information to the media. Before Obama, the government prosecuted a total of three cases during the previous 40 years.
When we wrote a few weeks ago about Eric Holder, Wikileaks and Bank of America, we focused on the irony of the U.S. Attorney General threatening to prosecute an organization (Wikileaks) that possibly holds the very information on which he might draw up his very first indictment of a major bank or Wall Street executive.
Why hasn’t Eric Holder asked to see the evidence, which Wikileaks claims to have, that executives at one of our largest banks may have committed serious crimes?
Two fetuses will be presented as witnesses before an Ohio legislative committee that is hearing a bill to outlaw abortions after the first heartbeat can be detected inside a woman’s womb.
The fetuses will appear live and in color before the committee on a video screen projecting ultrasound images taken from their pregnant mothers’ bodies. Janet Folger Porter, head of Faith2Action, an anti-abortion group, said the fetuses will be the youngest witnesses to ever testify when they come in front of the House Health and Aging Committee Wednesday morning.
Transit police say they have arrested an 18-year-old Sunset High School student caught on video placing feces on a TriMet bus driver’s seat last week at the Sunset Transit Center, The Oregonian’s Joseph Rose reports on commuting blog Hard Drive.
About a dozen tips from people who saw a photo of the woman on Hard Drive and other websites led police to to Gloria C. Soto, 18, who has been charged with felony criminal mischief and misdemeanor interfering with public transportation.
Last week, Rose reported that someone wiped dog feces all over the steering wheel and operator’s seat of a No. 62 bus while the driver was a taking a break at the Sunset Transit Center.
Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on March 10, 2011