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Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on October 3, 2014

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RIP Net Neutrality. Corporations have bought the internet. The FCC should be ashamed

Rainbow Freckles

 

Espionage & Brain-Computer Interfaces – Modern Warfare Series – Remote Neural Monitoring, Control and Manipulation
deepthought.newsvine.com/_news/2014/04/…

Inside the ‘DarkMarket’ Prototype, a Silk Road the FBI Can Never Seize
wired.com/2014/04/darkma…

Fukushima Didn’t Just Suffer 3 Meltdowns … It Also Suffered Melt-THROUGHS and Melt-OUTS
washingtonsblog.com/2014/04/fukush…

New Yorkers Protest Long Shadows Cast By New Skyscrapers
npr.org/2014/04/23/305…

Calif. developer finds, then paves over ancient Indian village to build $55 million project
rawstory.com/rs/2014/04/24/…

A priest dressed in his underwear chased a boy down the street after getting him drunk and sexually abusing him
courthousenews.com/2014/04/24/672…

Loaded stolen gun found in Tenn. 19 yr old’s vagina after her arrest for a suspended license
timesnews.net/article/907599…

Indiana Youth for Christ pastor admits to posing as teen girl online to solicit nude photos from boys
wane.com/news/crime/for…

Anonymous’ Airchat Aims to Allow Communication Without Needing Phone or Internet Access
ibtimes.co.uk/anonymous-airc…

Warhol works recovered from 30 year old Amiga disks
bbc.com/news/technolog…

The New York Times caught being a propaganda tool again – Is NYT Walking Back ‘Russia’ Photos Scoop?
fair.org/blog/2014/04/2…

Street Justice! Bus Passengers Beat Up Man Harassing Elderly Couple

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

Drug Sniffin’ Dogs

drug+snorting+dog
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Outrage as Grindr users post revealing pictures of themselves in front of Berlin Holocaust memorial

The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe in Berlin serves as a solemn reminder of the millions of lives lost during the Holocaust. It also serves as the backdrop for hundreds of gay and bisexual men using the austere grey concrete backdrop as a location to shoot their profile pictures for social app Grindr. The images have been collected on the blog ‘Totem and Taboo: Grindr Remembers the Holocaust,’ and have caused considerable outrage over the political correctness of the location.
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Owner Sends Dog To Kill Shelter For Being ‘Gay’
The photo that started it all, which was posted Wednesday, showed the forlorn animal in a closed-off area wet with rain, looking bleakly through the fence. “This guy was signed over to [Jackson Rabies Control], not [because] he’s mean or [because] he tears things up, but because … [h]is owner says he’s gay!” the caption under the photo explained. “He hunched [sic] another male dog so his owner threw him away [because] he refuses to have a ‘gay’ dog! Even if that weren’t the most assinine [sic] thing I’ve ever heard, it’s still discrimination!” The post additionally threatened that the dog would lose his life today if he weren’t adopted, due to a lack of room at the facility.
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Karen ‘Gary’ Kazaryan: The Hacker Who Allegedly Blackmailed 350 Women With 3,000 Nude Photos Over Skype And Facebook

A federal grand jury in the Central District of California has turned in a 30-count indictment against 27-year-old hacker Karen “Gary” Kazaryan, a resident from Glendale, Calif. If convicted on all 30 counts, including 15 counts of computer intrusion and 15 counts of aggravated identity theft, Kazaryan could face up to 105 years in federal prison. Karen ‘Gary’ Kazaryan: The Hacker Who Allegedly Blackmailed 350 Women With 3,000 Nude Photos Over Skype And Facebook According to the indictment released early Wednesday morning, Kazaryan allegedly hacked his way into hundreds of online accounts, using personal information and nude or semi-nude photos of his victims to coerce more than 350 female victims to show him their naked bodies, usually over Skype. By posing as a friend, Kazaryan allegedly tricked these women into stripping for him on camera, allegedly capturing more than 3,000 images of these women to blackmail them.
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Senior British rabbi filmed telling alleged child abuse victim not to go to the police

The footage shows the alleged victim telling Rabbi Padwa about someone “who sexually abused me when I was younger, when I was a child and I’m looking for your advice, to be honest, what to do…Would do you think maybe, is it a good idea to speak to the police about it?”. “Oh no,” Padwa answers, explaining that doing so would breach Rabbinic Law. The alleged victim says that child sex abuse is a “very serious issue”, but is told not tell the police. Rabbi Padwa adds: “Men Tur Nisht,” which is Yiddish for “people must not tell tales.” He continues: “The police is not the solution.”
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All data stored on cloud computing services can be accessed by US government without a warrant

According to reports, all personal information stored on major cloud computing services can be spied on by US agencies without users’ knowledge or even a search warrant. This is all reportedly being done under the recently reauthorized Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and has led British Members of Parliament to call on the British government to not only end the use of cloud computing but also stop sharing intelligence services with the U.S, according to the Independent. It’s worth pointing out that the US government has admitted breaching the Fourth Amendment under FISA while maintaining an absurd level of secrecy around the Act. Given the massive expansion of the Pentagon’s cyberwarfare forces and the exponential rise in surveillance overall, people around the world have a quite legitimate reason to be concerned.
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Burger King reveals its burgers were contaminated in horsemeat scandal

Burger King has revealed that some of its burgers were contaminated in the horsemeat scare, as the tainted food crisis threatened to undermine the confidence of consumers, and major retailers tried to protect their reputations.
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Cats Are Ruthless Killers. Should They Be Killed?

Look, I’m as sentimental as the next person. (I cried for the entirety of Les Miserables.) I love my cat and she gives my life meaning. But I also can admit that the science is staring us in the face. We can’t bear to talk about euthanizing cats because they are so friggin’ cute–but, if we’re honest with ourselves, the best solution to this problem is to kill cats. Kill them, with their cute little faces, their soft fur and their snuggles. Some of the cats need to be dead.
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Priest busted on meth charges

A Catholic priest busted for allegedly dealing crystal meth was suspended after church officials discovered he was a cross-dresser who was having sex in the rectory at Bridgeport’s St. Augustine Cathedral. Monsignor Kevin Wallin was relieved of his duties in May, but the Roman Catholic Diocese of Bridgeport continued to pay him a stipend until his Jan. 3 arrest — a day he was planning to fly to London on vacation. Now dubbed “Msgr. Meth” by some, Wallin seemed to live a life that easily could have been ripped from the script of “Breaking Bad,” the popular AMC series about a high school chemistry teacher turned crystal methamphetamine producer. At one point, Wallin was selling upwards of $9,000 of meth a week, according to his indictment. In his post-priesthood, Wallin, 61, bought an adult specialty and video store in North Haven, Conn., called Land of Oz that sells sex toys and X-rated DVDs. Investigators believe the shop helped him launder thousands of dollars in weekly profits.
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Can the DEA Hide a Surveillance Camera on Your Land?

The ruling last October came in a motion to suppress the evidence obtained by the warrantless video cameras. After that ruling, the defendants, five members of the Magana family, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute marijuana and now face up to life in prison and up to $10 million in fines. But as part of the plea deal, they retained their right to appeal the ruling. And their attorneys say they are prepared to take the case all the way to the US Supreme Court. In their motion, they had asked the court to suppress evidence because of the property’s locked gate and “No Trespassing” sign. Since the properties were heavily wooded and posted with signs, the owners were entitled to an expectation of privacy, the attorneys say.
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NeverGetBusted: Tips To Fool Drug Dogs

K-9s are trained to detect marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin. They are not trained to detect mushrooms or LSD.
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Operation Intercept, 1969 | War on Drugs, 1969: Photos From U.S. Customs’ ‘Operation Intercept’

Case in point: In October 1969, LIFE ran a cover story (or rather, a series of stories) under the banner: MARIJUANA: At Least 12 Million American Have Now Tried It. Are penalties too severe? Should it be legalized? Across 10 full pages, intermingling opinion, photography and reportage, LIFE took a hard look at pot smoking in the U.S., but waded deep into the debate — already heated then — of whether or not the country’s draconian marijuana statutes were doing more harm than good.
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Droid DNA “Hyper Intelligence” Commercial and its Transhumanist Message

This TV ad promoting Verizon’s Droid DNA phone is weird, cringe-worthy and also promotes something else: Transhumanism. Indeed, the ad does not only sell a smartphone. Not unlike movies and music videos, it normalizes the concept of “upgrading” humans by merging them with machines. While most of us already entertain a somewhat unhealthy, dependent relationship with our cellphones, this ad makes things creepier by showing the device completely modifying the user’s body and genetic makeup. Yes, it is “only a commercial”, but all of the concepts behind it are real and will be available to a very rich and limited public very soon. Here’s the ad.
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The DEA Wants to Access Your Medical Records Without Consent or a Warrant

The Drug Enforcement Administration is trying to access private prescription records of patients in Oregon without a warrant, despite a state law forbidding it from doing so. The ACLU and its Oregon affiliate are challenging this practice in a new case that raises the question of whether the Fourth Amendment allows federal law enforcement agents to obtain confidential prescription records without a judge’s prior approval. It should not.
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Al Pacino is transformed into Phil Spector with a huge wig as stills are released from controversial new TV movie

It is one of the most controversial Hollywood productions in years. And new stills of controversial new made-for-TV film Phil Spector show Al Pacino, who plays the music mogul, being sent to prison for murdering a B movie actress Lana Clarkson. The Godfather star wears a massive afro wig in the courtroom scene, and is flanked by Dame Helen Mirren, who is playing his lawyer Linda Kenny Baden.
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Miami-Dade Police dogs, cocaine used in 4th-grade science project

A Miami-Dade Police detective provided narcotics detector canines and an ounce of cocaine for his daughter’s fourth-grade science project, “Drug Sniffing Dogs.”
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10 Ways Social Taboos About Sex, Drugs and Death Scare Us from Learning the Truth

Taboos are not relics of ancient societies. America has its share of views that are cemented in cultural mores. As Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in a 1996 Supreme Court dissent, “Closed-minded we were — as every age is, including our own, with regard to matters it cannot guess, because it simply does not consider them debatable.” By foreclosing debate, modern taboos surrounding topics such as excrement, sex, drugs and death lead to harmful attitudes and policies. The ensuing misery ranges from “slut shaming” to the tragedy of the drug war that has resulted in over 50,000 violent Mexican deaths since 2006. Taboos negatively affect the latent assumptions on which Americans carry out their lives, and have transformed the pursuit of life, liberty and happiness into the pursuit of health, safety and the avoidance of death.
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Chinese Surgeons Treat Opiate Addiction by Removing Brain’s Pleasure Center

Doctors in China are experimenting with an extreme treatment for addiction. The experimental procedure consists of destroying portions of the brain’s pleasure center in an attempt to stop cravings for opiate drugs like heroin. Possible side effects including permanently disabling an addict’s ability to experience the entire range of human emotions, including the capacity to feel joy.
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ARGUS: The Technology that Takes Video Surveillance to Another Level

Argus Panoptes is the name of a giant of Greek mythology who had a hundred eyes and who was said to be “all-seeing”. What an appropriate name for DARPA’s latest wide area monitoring system, described as the “next generation of surveillance”. When mounted on a drone, ARGUS (which stands for Autonomous Real-Time Ground Ubiquitous Surveillance Imaging System) has a 1.8 Gigapixels video system that allows the constant video surveillance of a small city, complete with the tracking of moving objects and incredible zoom-in capabilities. Here’s a short video describing the basic (and non top-secret) capabilities of this technology. As you’ll see, the guy in the documentary refuses to say where this system is used. One thing, it is used and most probably on civilians. The All-Seeing Eye is not just a symbol, it is a goal the powers that be are striving to achieve.
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Movie Review: ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ By James Inman

I downloaded Zero Dark Thirty off BitTorrent because I thought I’d review the film exclusively for Media Underground. I’m not going to pay one dime for a Lockheed Martin commercial and I knew how it ends so here’s my take. The film should be called Zero Fuck Movie. It begins with a retarded looking ginger anorexic pale Carrot Juice Maya bitch standing in the background during a torture scene, but you’re supposed to feel sorry for her because she can’t stand to watch torture. First thoughts: any CIA agent in that room is going to be a West Point graduate and a professional sadist and is not going to give a fuck about torture. When they keep cutting back to her with that Florence Nightingale compassion cunt-face, it’s utterly laughable.
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Vertical slums, Caracas, Venezuela

The Tower of David, called after David brillembourg, the tower’s investor died in 1993. The building is incomplete due to the crisis of 1994 lacking of elevators, installed electricity, running water, balcony railing, windows, and even walls in many places. As Virginia Lopez, The Guardian, reported, Tower of David is far from the perfect home. No sewage system is in place, lorry-delivered water is rationed, whole sections of the building are in the dark and the absence of lifts forces people to walk up hundreds of stairs.
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Surfer Beats Own Record For Tallest Wave Ever Surfed – SPIEGEL ONLINE

Hawaiian surfer Garrett McNamara successfully rode a towering wave believed to be over 30 meters tall (100 feet) off the coast of Nazaré in Portugal on Monday. Reportedly, he’s now broken his own world record, set in 2011 in the same spot. The waves in this part of the Atlantic Ocean are legendary among surfers.
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The Cult of Nikola Tesla

No personality in the history of science has been pushed further into the realm of mythology than the Serbian-American electrical engineer Nikola Tesla. He is, without a doubt, one of the true giants in the history of electromagnetic theory. As an inventor he was as prolific as they come, with approximately 300 patents having been discovered in at least 26 countries, but many more inventions as well that stayed within his lab and were never patented. As remarkable as were his talents was his personality: private, eccentric, possessed of extraordinary memory and bizarre habits, and with a headlong descent into mental illness during his later years. Tesla’s unparalleled combination of genius and aberrance have turned him into one of the seminal cult figures of the day. As such, at least as much fiction as fact have swirled around popular accounts of his life, and devotees of conspiracy theories and alternative science hypotheses have hijacked his name more than that of any other figur…
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The Longest Hunger Strike

Staff turned off the video camera typically used to record medical procedures. They strapped Coleman down at “four points” with seatbelt-like “therapeutic” restraints. Edward Blanchette, the internist and prison medical director at the time, pushed a thick, flexible tube up Coleman’s right nostril. Rubber scraped against cartilage and bone and drew blood. Coleman howled. As the tube snaked into his throat, it kinked, bringing the force of insertion onto the sharp edges of the bent tube. They thought he was resisting so they secured a wide mesh strap over his shoulders to keep him from moving. A nurse held his head. Blanchette finally realized that the tube had kinked and pulled it back out. He pushed a second tube up Coleman’s nose, down his throat, and into his stomach. Blanchette filled the tube with vanilla Ensure. Coleman’s nose bled. He gagged constantly against the tube. He puked. As they led him back to his cell, the cuffs of Coleman’s gray sweatshirt were soaked with snot, s…
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That Cuddly Kitty Is Deadlier Than You Think

In a report that scaled up local surveys and pilot studies to national dimensions, scientists from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and the Fish and Wildlife Service estimated that domestic cats in the United States — both the pet Fluffies that spend part of the day outdoors and the unnamed strays and ferals that never leave it — kill a median of 2.4 billion birds and 12.3 billion mammals a year, most of them native mammals like shrews, chipmunks and voles rather than introduced pests like the Norway rat. The estimated kill rates are two to four times higher than mortality figures previously bandied about, and position the domestic cat as one of the single greatest human-linked threats to wildlife in the nation. More birds and mammals die at the mouths of cats, the report said, than from automobile strikes, pesticides and poisons, collisions with skyscrapers and windmills and other so-called anthropogenic causes.
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TILA TEQUILA PROVIDES PROOF EXPOSING THE ILLUMINATI!

OMG! Thanks Jasmine
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‘Quantum smell’ idea gains ground

A controversial theory that the way we smell involves a quantum physics effect has received a boost, following experiments with human subjects. It challenges the notion that our sense of smell depends only on the shapes of molecules we sniff in the air. Instead, it suggests that the molecules’ vibrations are responsible. A way to test it is with two molecules of the same shape, but with different vibrations. A report in PLOS ONE shows that humans can distinguish the two. Tantalisingly, the idea hints at quantum effects occurring in biological systems – an idea that is itself driving a new field of science
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LAPD Uses Anti-Terrorism Devise to Track Cellphone Users – Ca – News

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) is using an anti-terrorism device that indiscriminately sweeps up cellphone communications of innocent bystanders during burglary, drug and murder investigations. LA Weekly wrote back in September that the police agency purchased Stingray technology in 2006 using Department of Homeland Security (DHS) funds, and is deploying the portable equipment for routine police operations. DHS grant documents said the device was intended for “regional terrorism investigations.” Stingray pretends that it is a cell tower and fools wireless phones into establishing a connection. Once connected, it can establish cell location and download information of people who are not suspects in an investigation, raising all sorts of privacy issues.
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Brain region associated with selfishness

People with damage to a specific part of the brain entrusted unexpectedly large amounts of money to complete strangers. In an investment game played in the lab, three women with damage to a small part of the brain called the basolateral amygdala handed over nearly twice as much money as healthy people.

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File under Music, Photography, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG, SeMeN SPeRmS Links 'o Death, Sex

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on February 1, 2013

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Puppets ‘n Dummies


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

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

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

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

    The list of 102 names rejected in the past two years includes Baron, Bishop, Duke, General, Judge, Justice, King, Knight and Mr, all deemed too similar to titles.
    Advertisement: Story continues below

    Messiah was also turned down, as was 89, and the single letters, C, D, I and T, although Q and J were accepted after being queried.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    The insects instead produce genetic clones of themselves.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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