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So This Is Love!

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Iron in Egyptian relics came from space

The 5,000-year-old iron bead might not look like much, but it hides a spectacular past: researchers have found that an ancient Egyptian trinket is made from a meteorite. The result, published on 20 May in Meteoritics & Planetary Science1, explains how ancient Egyptians obtained iron millennia before the earliest evidence of iron smelting in the region, solving an enduring mystery. It also hints that they regarded meteorites highly as they began to develop their religion. “The sky was very important to the ancient Egyptians,” says Joyce Tyldesley, an Egyptologist at the University of Manchester, UK, and a co-author of the paper. “Something that falls from the sky is going to be considered as a gift from the gods.”
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Is Success Killing the Porn Industry?
According to one estimate, there are nearly 25 million porn sites worldwide and they make up 12 percent of all websites. Sebastian Anthony, writing for ExtremeTech, reports that Xvideos is the biggest porn site on the web, receiving 4.4 billion page views and 350 million unique visits per month. He claims porn accounts for 30 percent of all web traffic. Based on Google data, the other four of the top five porn sites, and their monthly page views (pvs) are: PornHub, 2.5 billion pvs; YouPorn, 2.1 billion pvs; Tube8, 970 million pvs; and LiveJasmin, 710 million pvs. In comparison, Wikipedia gets about 8 billion pvs.  
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Ex-Microsoft manager plans to create first U.S. marijuana brand

A former Microsoft executive plans to create the first U.S. national marijuana brand, with cannabis he hopes to eventually import legally from Mexico, and said he was kicking off his business by acquiring medical pot dispensaries in three U.S. states. Jamen Shively, a former Microsoft corporate strategy manager, said he envisions his Seattle-based enterprise becoming the leader in both recreational and medical cannabis – much like Starbucks is the dominant name in coffee, he said.
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Netizen outrage after Chinese tourist defaces Egyptian temple

Parents of a 15-year-old Chinese tourist have apologized after the teenager defaced a stone sculpture in an ancient Egyptian temple with graffiti. The act drew ire in both Egypt and China — generating a massive online backlash amongst China’s unforgiving netizens. The vandal carved ‘Ding Jinhao was here’ in Chinese in the 3,500 year old Luxor Temple.
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JCPenney Has an L.A. Billboard for a Tea Kettle — and It Looks Like Adolf Hitler

If you thought JCPenney was having problems at the top — or if pressure cookers were posing problems for the tea-kettle industry — look no further than 405 freeway near Culver City in Southern California, where an innocent stainless steel pot is drawing comparisons to perhaps the least innocent person of all time, spigot salute and all. Enter your own “calling the kettle Fuhrer” reference here.
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First Human-Engineered ‘Meat Burger’ To Be Consumed In London

Starting with a very particular cell extracted from dead cows necks at a local slaughterhouse, a select team of scientists are now close to serving up the world’s first human-engineered, cultured meat burger. That’s right. A whopping 5 ounce burger will be freshly made from lab grown bits of cultured meat and muscle tissue. The burger, the first of its kind, will be served to curious diner’s somewhere in London in the coming weeks.
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Coffee vs. beer: which drink makes you more creative?

The best time to have a beer (or two) would be when you’re searching for an initial idea. Because alcohol helps decrease your working memory (making you feel relaxed and less worried about what’s going on around you), you’ll have more brain power dedicated to making deeper connections. Neuroscientists have studied the “eureka moment” and found that in order to produce moments of insight, you need to feel relaxed so front brain thinking (obvious connections) can move to the back of the brain (where unique, lateral connections are made) and activate the anterior superior temporal gyrus, a small spot above your right ear responsible for moments of insight: Researchers found that about 5 seconds before you have a ‘eureka moment’ there is a large increase in alpha waves that activates the anterior superior temporal gyrus. These alpha waves are associated with relaxation, which explains why you often get ideas while you’re going for a walk, in the shower, or on the toilet.
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German railways deploys surveillance drones against graffiti gangs

The drones, which fly at an altitude of 150 yards, will be used at graffiti ‘hotspots’ such as the big German cities of Berlin, Leipzig, Cologne and Hamburg, a spokesman for Deutsche Bahn confirmed. The use of drones against vandals is the latest indication of the growing civilian market for unmanned aerial reconnaissance. Over 400 new drone systems are being developed by firms based in Europe, according to an EU report published last September. The drones used by Deutsche Bahn cost 60,000 euros each and are manufactured by German firm Microdrones, which also markets the machines for landscape photography, analysing traffic accidents and monitoring crops.
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The Unfiltered History of Rolling Papers

After tobacco was introduced to Spain from the New World in the 1500s, a tobacco trade developed in Europe in the 1600s. The aristocrats smoked Tommy Chong-size cigars, rolled in palm and tobacco leaves. When they were done smoking these enormous stogies, they would toss the butts on the ground, where peasants would pick them up, take them apart, and reroll what was left in small scraps of newspaper. “There was probably green smoke and sparks coming off of them,” Kesselman says of these early rolling papers. “It wouldn’t have been like they were smoking a new New York Times. They were smoking paper that had lead and cadmium and God only knows what in that ink, which would have been running all over their hands.”
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The End of the Lower East Side’s Last Great Rehearsal Space

Much of Manhattan is a secret city, and few secrets are better than this: Below venerable dive Max Fish, behind grated steel doors that often vibrate with noise, is an old brick-walled basement room, pipes snaking overhead, a sweet smell of subterranean sweat mixed with old beer and cigarettes hanging in the air. Contained within: musical detritus built up over a generation—assorted amps, drum kits, microphone cables, and one stand-alone toilet shrouded by a Mickey Mouse bedsheet. This is the last great music rehearsal space on the Lower East Side. It will soon cease to exist.
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THE WORST ROOM

A BLOG ABOUT TRYING TO FIND AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN NEW YORK CITY
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SoulOS – The Soul Operating System

To re-connect young people with the teachings of the Catholic church, we developed ‘Soul OS’, a new operating system that encourages people to ‘upgrade their souls’ with Pope John Paul II’s inspirational quotes.
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How to Convince People WiFi Is Making Them Sick

There’s no known scientific reason why a wireless signal might cause physical harm. And studies have found that even people who claim to be sensitive to electromagnetic fields can’t actually sense them. Their symptoms are more likely due to nocebo, the evil twin of the placebo effect. The power of our expectation can cause real physical illness. In clinical drug trials, for example, subjects who take sugar pills report side effects ranging from an upset stomach to sexual dysfunction.
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Interview: Artist William Stout talks about bootlegs and ‘Beatlesongs’

“A guy tapped on my shoulder. ‘You wanna do bootleg record covers?’ ‘Sure!’ ‘Selma and Las Palmas, this Friday night, eight o’clock. Be there.’ He paused. ‘Alone.’ I agreed. “The intersection of Selma and Las Palmas at that time was one of the seedier Hollywood neighborhoods. Promptly at eight an old black 40’s coupe with smoked windows pulled up to the corner and stopped. The passenger window opened a crack. A paper sheet came out of it. I took the sheet and read it. It said ‘Winter Tour’ and had a list of Rolling Stones songs. A voice inside the car said, ‘Next Friday, same time.’ The window rolled up. Then the window rolled back down a tiny bit. ‘Alone.’
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Let’s Fight Big Pharma’s Crusade to Turn Eccentricity Into Illness

Nature takes the long view, mankind the short. Nature picks diversity; we pick standardization. We are homogenizing our crops and homogenizing our people. And Big Pharma seems intent on pursuing a parallel attempt to create its own brand of human monoculture.
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Breeding the Nutrition Out of Our Food

This health directive needs to be revised. If we want to get maximum health benefits from fruits and vegetables, we must choose the right varieties. Studies published within the past 15 years show that much of our produce is relatively low in phytonutrients, which are the compounds with the potential to reduce the risk of four of our modern scourges: cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and dementia. The loss of these beneficial nutrients did not begin 50 or 100 years ago, as many assume. Unwittingly, we have been stripping phytonutrients from our diet since we stopped foraging for wild plants some 10,000 years ago and became farmers.

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

Let’s Have A Cyber War

  • A little-known Texas law and a foreclosure could have a man in Flower Mound living on Easy Street.

    Flower Mound’s Waterford Drive is lined with well-manicured $300,000 homes. So, when a new neighbor moved in without the usual sale, mortgage-paying homeowners had a few questions.

    “What paperwork is it and how is it legally binding if he doesn’t legally own the house?” said Leigh Lowrie, a neighboring resident. “He just squats there.”

    Lowrie and her husband said the house down the street was in foreclosure for more than a year and the owner walked away. Then, the mortgage company went out of business.

    Apparently, that opened the door for someone to take advantage of the situation. But, Kenneth Robinson said he’s no squatter. He said he moved in on June 17 after months of research about a Texas law called “adverse possession.”

  • United States Army Private First Class Christopher Eric Wey, 19, was arrested after he tried to board a United Airlines flight to Los Angeles from Yuma, Ariz., on Wednesday, the U.S. Attorney’s office for Arizona said.

    Transportation Security Administration officers detected explosives in his baggage during security screening at Yuma International Airport. A subsequent search found a half ounce of C4 explosive hidden in a tobacco can inside one of the bags. Wey was detained for investigation and interviewed by FBI agents.

  • The advent of the Internet, with sophisticated algorithmic search engines, has made accessing information as easy as lifting a finger. No longer do we have to make costly efforts to find the things we want. We can “Google” the old classmate, find articles online, or look up the actor who was on the tip of our tongue. The results of four studies suggest that when faced with difficult questions, people are primed to think about computers and that when people expect to have future access to information, they have lower rates of recall of the information itself and enhanced recall instead for where to access it. The Internet has become a primary form of external or transactive memory, where information is stored collectively outside ourselves.
  • TCM in the US were last night scheduled to play Popeye The Sailor Meets Ali Baba’s Forty Thieves, a notoriously racist cartoon that almost collapses under the weight of its Arab stereotyping. The film was made in 1937 when, as far as I know, there wasn’t any particular US-Arab conflict or issues that would have brought about such propaganda with specific urgency. It just looks like casual, timeless racism.

    Of course, we’re currently going through a period in US foreign relations where this cartoon is particularly potent. If it could ever be said to be dangerous, now is likely that time.

    And this, I suppose, is why the cartoon didn’t air. But why no explanation? Why no apology? Why no statement of any kind?

  • Some commentators believe the real purpose of the operation was to provide “evidence” that U.S. arms were behind the gang violence in Mexico to provide a basis for further restrictions on U.S. arms sales, pointing to comments by Hillary Clinton and the New York Times editors on the need for further restrictions to limit the weaponry of the Mexican drug cartels. While the supposition is far from unreasonable, stronger evidence supporting such claims is to date missing.
  • Over the past several months researchers at the Stanford Security Lab have been developing a platform for measuring dynamic web content. One of our chief applications is a system for automated enforcement of Do Not Track by detecting the myriad forms of third-party tracking, including cookies, HTML5 storage, fingerprinting, and much more. While the software isn’t quite polished enough for public release, we’re eager to share some unexpected early results on the advertising ecosystem. Please bear in mind that these are preliminary findings from experimental software; our primary aims at this stage are developing the platform and validating the approach to third-party tracking detection.
  • Anyone who cares to buy the information transmitted by your meter may do so. The police, insurance companies, actually anyone who comes to think they must have an interest in what you are doing in the privacy of your home. Since these meters are radio devices this amounts to warrantless wiretapping. It is the ultimate surveillance system.

    While these devices are installed with the false promise of reducing your power bill, the truth will hit you full force when you open the first bill you receive after installation of the smart meter. Your power bill will have doubled, minimally, but more likely, quadrupled.

  • Some 400 hectares of maize found to have been grown with genetically modified seeds have been destroyed throughout Hungary deputy state secretary of the Ministry of Rural Development Lajos Bognar said.
    The GMO maize has been ploughed under, said Lajos Bognar, but pollen has not spread from the maize, he added. Unlike several EU members, GMO seeds are banned in Hungary.
  • If you think the establishment of the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after 9/11 has really helped to make the skies safer, think again. A new report issued by the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security, Homeland Defense and Foreign Operations, says that since November 2001, there have been more than 25,000 airport security breaches, ranging from minor incidents like baggage accidentally being left behind, to major breaches like travelers bypassing security lines and bringing various weapons onto airplanes.

    The report explains that there have been more than 14,000 incidents of individuals getting into secure areas, including into the secure side of airports, without going through TSA screening.

    TSA screeners have also personally failed to properly screen travelers about 6,000 times, while more than 2,600 travelers somehow successfully got through the security line without undergoing the normal screening procedures.

  • Why would Wired with-hold this critically important information, unless they were actively co-operating with US agents trying to fabricate charges against Assange? Given that Lamo had notified authorities of Manning’s alleged actions while still continuing to chat with him, it’s logical to assume the Feds would have wanted to censor any published details. Wired appears to have willingly complied.
  • Yesterday brought major news for horror fans that their is a new “Evil Dead” movie in that works according to Bloody Disgusting. They also have revealed that Federico Alvarez will be directing the film. He made the robot invasion short “Panic Attack!”.

    “The Evil Dead” is film that launched the careers of both Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell, amongst many others. In the series, there is the superior sequel, “Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn” and my favorite “Army of Darkness” and together they make up on of the best franchises in horror history. Bruce Campbell has reached major fan boy status from these films and will always been known as Ashley J. Williams aka Ash. There has been rumors of a fourth “Evil Dead” for many years now but this might be the final rumor. It is hard to believe but it is almost 20 years since Ash last fought The Evil Dead.

  • Jane is in her 70s, a retired widow who spends her days doing volunteer work in the East Bay and fussing over her grandchildren. She also downloads porn illegally over BitTorrent.

    That, at least, is the claim in an April lawsuit against her and dozens of other Jane and John Does by a Chicago law firm that’s been busily filing similar cases around the country.

    It’s also made a habit of strongly suggesting that these “digital pirates” settle out of court for several thousand dollars. Letters to defendants helpfully remind them the amount is below what they’d probably pay in attorney’s fees and that settling would avoid publicly linking their names to pornography.

    This particular Jane (who didn’t want her real name used for that very reason) said she’s never downloaded porn and doesn’t know what a BitTorrent is. She can’t afford an attorney to make her case, but she’s not about to settle either.

    “It smacks of extortion,” she said.

  • Since we have smaller teeth, we chew our food less effectively, and more of what we eat is swallowed only partially chewed, or not chewed at all. With corn, some of the kernels will be chewed fully, some partially, and the others will be unchewed and swallowed whole. Our digestive system today is not that good at digesting plant material anymore, much less whole kernels. They pass through our stomach and intestines, and appear in our stool to confound and entertain us.
  • Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) on Friday strongly suggested that members of Congress are making it difficult for President Obama to raise the debt ceiling because of his race.

    “I do not understand what I think is the maligning and maliciousness [toward] this president,” said Jackson Lee, a member of the Congressional Black Caucus. “Why is he different? And in my community, that is the question that we raise. In the minority community that is question that is being raised. Why is this president being treated so disrespectfully? Why has the debt limit been raised 60 times? Why did the leader of the Senate continually talk about his job is to bring the president down to make sure he is unelected?”

  • A killer python crushed a 2-year-old toddler to death in her crib and tried to eat the child whole, bone-chilling testimony revealed at the trial of the girl’s parents.

    “There were also several clusters of puncture wounds … that represent bites from the snake as the snake was trying to ingest her, basically,” medical examiner Wendy Lavezzi testified in Sumter County court in Florida.

  • A dramatic and shocking demonstration of how your brain gets fooled to see something that is not there because of your biases, prejudices and expectations.
  • “All of a sudden, there were kittens all over the highway,” he said. “You really couldn’t help but run over them at that speed. It made me sick to my stomach.”

    McAllister said passengers in the pickups apparently dropped the kittens in bags or sacks near the Bullard Avenue exit.

    “Looking down, there were two, three, four to the right of me. There were more to the left. They were all around me,” said McAllister, a teacher who was driving home from Mississippi. “It was like a horror movie.”

  • The customer chillingly told her: “You look like Casey Anthony.”

    “She said that I was trying to hurt babies, I was killing babies and she was going to stop it before it happened again,” said Blackwell, who also has a daughter named Caylee.

    Nalley left the store but waited outside until Blackwell’s shift ended, and began to follow the convenience store worker in a minivan, according to reports.

    “I got in my vehicle and began to back out and looked and could tell she was staring directly at me,” Blackwell said.

    “I could almost see the white in her eyes.”

    Nalley continued her pursuit for several miles to a parking lot, where she drove into Blackwell’s car with such force it flipped over.

  • The Pentagon released a long-promised cybersecurity plan Thursday that declares the Internet a domain of war.

    The plan notably does not spell out how the US military would use the Web for offensive strikes, however.

    The Defense Department’s first-ever plan for cyberspace calls on the department to expand its ability to thwart attacks from other nations and groups, beef up its cyber-workforce and expand collaboration with the private sector.

  • More beef from cattle in Japan that ate straw tainted by radiation has found its way into the food supply, deepening concern about the safety of meat as the country struggles to contain the spread of the contamination.

    Cattle at the farm in Asakawa, about 60 kilometers from the crippled Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear station, were fed with rice straw containing 97,000 becquerels of cesium per kilogram, compared with the government standard of 300 becquerels, said Hidenori Ohtani at the livestock division of the Fukushima prefectural government. The farm shipped 42 cattle in the past three months to slaughterhouses in Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba and Miyagi prefectures, which were processed into meat and sold to distributors, he said.

  • A 42-year-old man told police he ate two chickens, six wings, two racks of ribs and a cheeseburger, saying he’d pass a test to determine his blood alcohol content because he’d downed “‘a ton of food.'”

    He apparently was wrong, according to a recently released Fort Pierce Police report.

    herzog_david.jpgThe case that put David James Herzog behind bars on a DUI charge began on the Fourth of July after a woman told an officer a “fat (buttocks) cracka” was on North 21st Street and Avenue G trying to buy “‘dope.”

  • Over the next 18 months Jim’s problems increased. “The pain was getting worse as the silicone hardened around my testicles, so when I stood up it felt like they were being yanked down with the weight. I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t work and I felt like a freak.” Finally, in February 2010, he met Marcus Drake, a consultant urologist at Southmead Hospital in Bristol, who tried to remove the silicone in an operation. “I was warned I could lose my testicles, but I was in so much pain, it seemed a risk worth taking,” Jim says.

    Unfortunately the operation had to be stopped when the flesh on his scrotum lost its blood supply. “I spent the next three weeks at home with a district nurse coming round every day to dress the wound and keep it clean, but the smell of rotting flesh was simply horrendous,” he says.

  • Back in the late 1930’s, infamous urban planner Robert Moses created this mile long artificial beach, originally named the “Bronx Riviera.” Although widely known as the latter, locals call it “Horse Shit Beach” or the “Puerto Rican Riviera.” Latinos affectionately refer to it as “Playa Chocha”, while New-Yorkers simply know it as “Ghetto Beach.” Orchard Beach is like nothing I’ve experienced before. While the beach may certainly lack proper facilities and the glamour of a “traditional Riviera” (whatever that means), the atmosphere, energy and people clearly compensate… particularly on Sundays or during long holiday weekends.
  • Patriotic Indian Hackers “Indishell” / Indian Cyber Army finally Strike to the Biggest Pirated Music Download Website of Bollywood Albums run by Pakistan crew.

    The hack is perform against the Mumbai blasts – Wednesday 13 July 2011. Pakistan issues a condemnation after three attacks blamed on terrorists strike Mumbai, targeting the city’s Opera House district, its Zaveri bazaar and the central Dadar area.

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File under Horror, Music, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG, SeMeN SPeRmS Links 'o Death

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on July 16, 2011

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I Can’t Gitmo Satisfaction

  • Atomic Test Archive
  • Nasa says super solar storm coming in 2012. It could knock out all electricity on the planet!
  • Terry Holdbrooks is a former guard at the Guantanamo Bay detention camps. He was stationed at GTMO in 2003 and 2004. During his time there, he converted to Islam. He is now a vocal critic of the camp.
  • Alan Wolfson creates handmade miniature sculptures of urban environments. Complete with complex interior views and lighting effects, a major work can take several months to complete.

    The pieces are usually not exact representations of existing locations, but rather a combination of details from many different locations along with much of the detail from the artist’s imagination.

    There is a narrative element to the work. Scenarios are played out through the use of inanimate objects in the scene. There are never people present, only things they have left behind; garbage, graffiti, or a tip on a diner table, all give the work a sense of motion and a storyline.

  • Gen Antoshkin said he thought the Japanese were simply unable to cope on their own. “It is clear that they do not have enough strength or means. They need to ask the international community for help,” he said. “I think the Japanese catastrophe is already more serious than Chernobyl. The main thing is that they do not allow it to become three, four or five times more serious.”

    Gen Antoshkin, 68, was in charge of Soviet pilots who flew over Chernobyl’s stricken fourth reactor, dropping lead, sand and clay from the air to try to contain radiation. In the ten days after the accident on 26 April 1986, his pilots flew 4,000 such flights, exposing themselves to huge radiation doses.

  • Even to a layperson, it is obvious that this means that the huge hydrogen explosion at unit 3 must have occurred in the reactor itself, and that the entire top of the reactor containment vessel was obliterated, ejecting the contents of the core – as well as the spent fuel pool- into the atmosphere.
    This means, obviously, that significant quantities of plutonium were released, and that the release of radiation from unit 3 alone must be many times higher than has been admitted for the entire
    complex – Chernobyl pales in comparison.
  • The debate about coffee’s merits has raged ever since. Is it a pernicious brew that causes impotence, arterio-sclerosis, heart failure, indigestion, insomnia, premature old age, pancreatic cancer, birth defects and bad breath, as well as poverty among the farmers who grow it? Or is it an inky nectar that helps prevent Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, liver cancer, gallstones, type 2 diabetes and colon cancer, improves motor skills and reaction times, promotes fair trade to the impoverished south and stimulates both intellectual acuity and social interaction?
  • This really puts the whole DIY-maker-homebrew thing in perspective: Libya’s rebels aren’t just working with a hijacked cell phone network, but hobbling together their own weapons out of discarded military stockpiles. As this Al Jazeera report shows, they’re welding their own rocket launch platforms, affixing helicopter guns to pick-up trucks, and builidng missile firing controls out of light switches.
  • 5. Congress hasn’t changed a single law on oil and gas drilling in the past year. A year later, the liability cap for companies that cause a major spill is still just $75 million, companies with dismal safety records can still obtain new leases, and they can still avoid compensating families when workers die on rigs. In January, the National Oil Spill Commission released 300 pages of findings and recommendations that Congress has largely ignored.
  • As world marks the Chernobyl anniversary, many say that the world has failed to learn the lessons on nuclear safety that the tragedy provided. RT talks to Professor Christopher Busby, Scientific secretary of the European Committee on radiation risks, for a little more insight on 21st century’s most serious nuclear crisis at Fukushima.
  • Al-Qaeda plotted to blow you up, using your Sega. Detainee Abu Faraj al-Libi’s leaked records show that he was slotted to fill Khalid Shaikh Mohammed’s leadership role after alleged 9/11 mastermind Mohammed was imprisoned, Wired reports. “Detainee headed an operation to build remote detonators and conceal them in children’s video game cartridges,” his file reads, and more than 20 ‘radio-type detonating devices,” designed to be triggered with cell phones, were found in a raid of a safe-house al-Libi ran, the detonators built into the back of Sega Genesis game cartridges.
  • A trove of more than 700 classified military documents provides new and detailed accounts of the men who have done time at the Guantánamo Bay prison in Cuba, and offers new insight into the evidence against the 172 men still locked up there.
  • Highbrow animated GIFs? You know, the visual medium best known for doing stuff like this? Apparently so. That, anyway, is the mission of a New York-based photographer named Jamie Beck. Beck calls her creations “cinemagraphs” — “more than a photo, but not quite a video” — and has posted a series featuring supermodel Coco Rocha to her Tumblr.
  • There is a saying that when one lives on the mountain, one lives off the mountain. If you live next to a mountain of garbage, then what do you live off of? Several tens of farmers in Nanjing have for many years gathered near the Shuige Garbage Landfill, and collected garbage from the landfill to feed their pigs, every year sending over ten thousand adult pigs to the slaughterhouse; At the same time, next to the Jiaoze Garbage Landfill, there is also someone who is “living off the mountain when one lives on the mountain”.
  • Uesugi also notes that at TEPCO press conferences, which are now being held at company headquarters, foreign correspondents and Japanese freelancers regularly ask probing questions while mainstream journalists simply record and report company statements reiterating that the situation is basically under control and there is nothing to worry about. One reason for this, Uesugi suggests, is that TEPCO, a giant media sponsor, has an annual 20 billion yen advertising budget. “The media keeps defending the information from TEPCO!” “The Japanese media today is no different from the wartime propaganda media that kept repeating to the very end that ‘Japan is winning the war against America,'” Uesugi exclaimed.
  • Scotch tape lets you see through frosted glass
  • A holy war erupted yesterday at a Sikh temple in Queens — where worshippers wielding swords and cricket bats interrupted a prayer session to attack their rivals in a vicious power struggle, police and witnesses said.

    Rival factions at the Baba Makhan Shah Lobana Sikh Center in South Richmond Hill have been bickering for months over control, authorities and members said.

    The dispute reached a bloody climax yesterday when the infighting turned violent, accompanied by screams, taunts and death threats.

    The alleged attackers — armed with at least one sword about 40 inches long, and another sword, according to a witness — were part of the old guard that had been recently voted out of power but refused to accept the decision, even going to court to challenge the election.
    Thanks Smart Crew

  • Files released by the whistleblowing website Wikileaks have revealed that the US believed many of those held at Guantanamo Bay were innocent or only low-level operatives.
  • I’m delighted to cross-post below an interview with Khaled Ben Mustapha, one of seven French citizens held at Guantánamo, who was released in March 2005, and who recently spoke to Arnaud Mafille, an intern for Cageprisoners. This is a fascinating interview for a number of reasons; primarily, because of Ben Mustapha’s reflections on his time in Afghanistan, on how he and others were sold to US forces, and on Guantánamo as part of a war on Islam, and also for his explanations of how he and the other French ex-prisoners have been treated in France.
  • A massive leak of more than 700 military documents, attributed to infamous transparency group WikiLeaks, was released Sunday night. Much of the new information deals with detainees held in Guantanamo Bay, records that begin immediately after the September 11 terrorist attacks and range to 2009, including documents relating to 172 prisoners still held at the controversial detention facility.

    Here are seven shocking revelations about Guantanamo Bay and the practices there.

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