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The place where the world comes together in honesty and mirth.
Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
Your new energy comes with a brand-new attitude, so make sure you treasure it and make the most of it.
An old fixed idea or deeply held belief has suddenly turned around completely in your head, and now a whole new set of possibilities has opened up in a way that you never would have thought was possible.
What lies ahead for you?
If this could happen, anything can!  
Some of our readers today have been in:
New Delhi, Delhi, India
London, England, United Kingdom
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Koeln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Indore, Mahya Pradesh, India
Quezon City, Manila, Philippines
Bremen, Bremen, Germany
Oberursel, Hessen, Germany
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
Lisbon, Lisboa, Portugal
Motherwell, Scotland, United Kingdom
Chatswood, New South Wales, Australia
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
Canberra, Australian, Capital Territory, Australia
Saint Petersburg, Saint Petersburg, Russia
Moscow, Moskva, Russia
Cairo, Al Qahirah, Egypt

as well as Luxembourg, Mexico, Wales the United States in such cities such as Goffstown, Independence, Absecon, Dekalb, Bellefonte and more.

Today is Tuesday, May 4, the 124th day of 2010.
There are 241 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holiday or celebration is:
Respect For Chickens Day

Forty years ago today

On May 4, 1970, Ohio National Guardsmen opened fire during an anti-war protest at Kent State University, killing four students and wounding nine others. (Two of the students who died, Allison Krause and Jeffrey Miller, had been participating in the demonstration while the other two, Sandra Scheuer and William Schroeder, were passersby en route to their next classes.)
And another note about the day the government murdered four children ... the young lady in this iconic photo of that day in infamy was arrested and jailed for being a runaway who was only 13 years old at the time of the killings.

The would be bomb and bomber

Officials say the buyer of the SUV found in Times Square is a man of Pakistani descent.
Arrest made in Times Square bombing case
An arrest overnight at JFK airport.

The attempted car bombing now appears to be an act of international terrorism:
Federal agents and police detectives arrested a Connecticut man, a naturalized United States citizen from Pakistan, shortly before midnight Monday for driving a car bomb into Times Square on Saturday evening in what turned out to be an unsuccessful attack, Justice Department officials announced.

The man, Faisal Shahzad, 30, was taken into custody at Kennedy Airport on board an Emirates flight to Dubai, according to the airline and an early-morning statement Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. delivered at the Justice Department in Washington.

Two other passengers were removed from the plane, Emirates said, but it was unclear whether they were connected with the bombing attempt.

Mr. Shahzad was believed to have recently bought the 1993 Nissan Pathfinder that was found loaded with gasoline, propane, fireworks and fertilizer in the heart of Times Square, a person briefed on the investigation said.
No doubting that we'll be hearing a lot more about this case over the next couple days.

A U.S. citizen arrested as he tried to flee the country led a quiet life in Conn., ex-neighbors say.
Repugicans already trying to politicize capture of Times Square bombing suspect
Peter King is a typical repugican buffoon. The alleged Times Square bomber was arrested last night. Within hours, King was politicizing the issue -- and undermining the constitution while he was at it:
Peter King (N.Y.), the top repugican on the House Homeland Security Committee, wants to know whether the Pakistani-born American arrested in connection with a car bomb in New York City’s Times Square was read his Miranda rights.

“I hope that [Attorney General Eric] Holder did discuss this with the intelligence community. If they believe they got enough from him, how much more should they get? Did they Mirandize him? I know he’s an American citizen but still,” King said.
But still?

Yesterday, there were widespread media reports that the Joint Terrorist Task Force (JTTF) had taken over the investigation. This morning, the NY Times noted that the JTTF had identified the suspect.

Peter King serves on the Homeland Security Committee in the House. In fact, he's the ranking Republican on that committee. So King should know what the JTTF is:
Joint Terrorism Task Forces (JTTFs) are small cells of highly trained, locally based, passionately committed investigators, analysts, linguists, SWAT experts, and other specialists from dozens of U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies. It is a multi-agency effort led by the Justice Department and FBI designed to combine the resources of federal, state, and local law enforcement.
So, the entity leading the investigation is comprised of "law enforcement and intelligence agencies," but Peter King wants to know if the intelligence community was involved?

repugicans never miss an opportunity to play politics with national security -- even when it makes them look like fools.

UPDATE: So, this is the right-wing talking point of the day. Former Maverick John McCain is piling on, too. 

Pakistan intelligence officials say at least one man has been detained in the southern city of Karachi in connection with the Times Square bombing attempt.
Times Square bomb plot suspect says he acted alone
The Pakistani-American arrested on suspicion of driving a bomb-laden car into New York's Times Square told U.S. authorities he acted alone but skeptical investigators are looking into his recent trip to Pakistan, a law enforcement source said on Tuesday.

Spider-Man comes to the rescue in comic book store robbery

A comic book store owner dressed as Spider-Man became a real superhero for the day when he caught an alleged thief trying to steal an X-Men omnibus.

Michael Baulderstone, 45, was dressed as Spider-Man as part of a fancy dress open day at comic Centre in Adelaide, Australia, confronted the man when he claims he spotted him taking the £100 book.

Security tapes show Mr Baulderstone, addressing the man before stopping him and confiscating the book. On top of that, a group of Jedi knights blocked the door to prevent him from escaping, along with The Flash.

He said that customers initially thought the incident was a stunt, until Mr Baulterstone told them to call the police. "It was a bit serious at the time, but now we're looking back laughing at what greeted police when they arrived," he said.

As The World Turns

As The World Turns
Thai protesters say they have accepted a deal to end the violent political crisis that has paralyzed central Bangkok for nearly two months.

Pirates Flee as Somali Militia Group Moves on Town
Dozens of fighters from one of Somalia's most powerful rebel groups moved into a northern town Sunday where pirates operate, sending the pirates fleeing in a development that could upend the piracy trade, witnesses said.

The State Of The Nation

The State Of The Nation
Local communities wait nervously to see which one will experience the full impact of the disaster.

Local Hospitality

Local Hospitality

Scientist: Oil Spill Could Reach NC's Outer Banks

Ocean scientists are concerned a powerful current could bring the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico up to North Carolina's Cape Hatteras.

Will Gulf Oil Spill Affect North Carolina's Gas Prices?

Will Gulf Oil Spill Affect North Carolina's Gas Prices?
AAA Carolinas says you should expect to pay $3 a gallon this summer, regardless of what happens with the oil spill.

It's that time of year again when strawberries are ripe in the east and ready to pick.   

In order to cook a giant sandwich, you can imagine that you would need a giant oven. 

When U.S. District Judge Frank Whitney ordered the bishop taken into custody, wails of disbelief pierced the courtroom.

Judge agrees to delay release of militia members

Prosecutors won a delay in the release of nine Michigan militia members who had been ordered freed from jail to await trial on a charge of trying to wage war against the government.

On The Job

On The Job
Emphasizing these particular abilities can help recent college grads get hired.
When supervisors say, "You're working too hard," how should you interpret that? 

It's The Economy Stupid

It's The Economy Stupid
Many people think earning more will boost their scores, and that all credit reports are the same.
A United-Continental airline could bring higher prices to four major cities where routes overlap most.
Stocks are sinking worldwide as fears grow that Greece and other countries will default.  

How to live out of your car

Reddit user xenophone has some practical, hard-won tips for living out of your car. His list has sparked a long and pretty interesting thread of tips, tricks and theory that runs from "how to live off the grid" to "how to hang on by your fingernails."
# Staying clean is very important. Trust me on this. People trust you more when you're clean and you'll have an easier time spinning yourself as "adventurous" rather than "destitute." More on this later. # If you can find a restroom with a lock, you can take a fairly complete bath with a washcloth and a sink.
# If you can't actually bathe, do a whore's bath once a day. Get some hand sanitizer, the gel with high alcohol content, and rub yourself down, especially in the stinky areas. It won't get you clean per se and the alcohol will dry out your skin, but it'll disinfect you and kill all the smell-causing microorganisms. Follow this with deodorant and baby powder.
# The easiest way to LOOK clean and safe is to keep your hair and beard trimmed. The simplest and cheapest way to do this is to get some inexpensive hair clippers and clip it short once or twice a week.

And I Quote

Whenever you are asked if you can do a job, tell `em, `Certainly I can!` 
Then get busy and find out how to do it.

~ President Theodore Roosevelt



Magnitude 6.4 quake shakes Chile, no damages

The U.S. Geological Survey says a magnitude-6.4 earthquake has struck off Chile's central coast.

Express airport security to return

The Clear program allows members to breeze through security for a fee.  
Does anyone see the inherent flaw(s) here? And no, 'concern over personal data' isn't even on the list!

Things They Won't Tell You

Things They Won't Tell You
One legal trick allows dual-earning couples to claim Social Security twice.  

Proof that life can exist in the most hostile of environments

Proof that life can exist in the most hostile of environments
Seen on a vehicle with Texas plates

Supreme Court closing iconic entrance

Why am I not surprised
The Supreme Court is closing its iconic front entrance beneath the words "Equal Justice Under Law." Beginning Tuesday, visitors no longer will ascend the wide marble steps to enter the 75-year-old building.
Since there is no equal justice under law with the current court it was only a matter of when

Lunatic Fringe

Lunatic Fringe

Headcase Lush Dimbulb lies: that the Obama administration intentionally caused the Halliburton-British Petroleum oil spill.
Yeah, and the Tooth fairy and the Man in the Moon are behind the war on the planet zig-wiggle, too.

Faux's Glen Brick asks, "What has [Obama] said that sounds like American?".

Duncan Hunter (retard-California) calls for deportation of Hispanic-Americans babies.
Aw, just go to hell and stay there, you sick moron.


Neo-Nazi group wants May 5 to be "Report an Illegal Day"

The National Socialist Movement , a neo-Nazi organization, has begun circulating fliers which aim to change Cinco de Mayo into "Report an Illegal Day."
OK, let's see if we got this straight: Give up excessive drinking and partying using a Mexican Holiday (their Independence Day) as an excuse to do so ... and tell the cops that 'those' people that you are partying 'for' are not welcome to celebrate THEIR holiday and should be deported immediately.

Yeah, like that is gonna happen.

Why Are Red State Marriages Weak?

Jonathan Rauch, reviewing Red Families v. Blue Families: Legal Polarization and the Creation of Culture, by law professors Naomi Cahn and June Carbone, in the National Journal, recaps a well known fact: repugican leaning states have weak families by a variety of objective measures, while Democratic leaning states have strong ones.

Although wingnuts "revel in condemning the loose moral values and louche lifestyles of 'San Francisco liberals,'" the "liberal, bicoastal, predominantly Democratic places that wingnuts love to hate" are the areas of the U.S. with the most stable marriages and lowest teen birth rates

And I Quote

I never forget a face, but in your case I`ll be glad to make an exception. 

~ Groucho Marx

Scientific Minds Want To Know

Scientific Minds Want To Know

Scientists push back the date for the earliest known presence of a magnetic field on Earth by about 250 million years.

In Matters Of Health

In Matters Of Health
A device zaps away tissue that constricts the airways in some long-suffering asthmatics.
Yoga is the only physical activity that helps control eating, a new study says.

Autism has long been defined by its drawbacks – it's time to look at the benefits, such as better memory, visuospatial skills and attention to detail.

The discovery could lead to immunity-boosting vaccines for newborns and even unborn babies.

The aging brain ... gets better

It's not all bad news after age 40 — some brain functions improve, research finds.  

Interesting In General

Interesting In General
An envelope that took the legendary mail service years to deliver has quite a story behind it.
Many homeowners aren't even thinking about making upgrades to boost resale value.

Culinary DeLites

Culinary DeLites
Make dinner prep a stress-free event with these easy menus for every day of the week. 

For backyard-farmer companies, business is bountiful

Backyard gardening
Lininger calls himself a farmer, though he doesn’t ride a John Deere and never sees a sun set over the fields. Instead, he tends a succession of peewee suburban plots as if they were the sprawling ranches of the Central Valley.
“The sign of success used to be who had the best lawn,” said Lininger, 41, as he pinched the dead leaves off the plot’s lone beet. “Now, it’s all about how much food you can grow.”
Homeowners who want fresh cucumbers and heirloom tomatoes but don’t have time to grow their own hire Lininger’s company, Farmscape, to do the work for them. But don’t call him a gardener: It’s more like farming by the foot. And the 6-foot-4 ex-Marine, skinny as a snap bean, says he can barely keep up with demand.
There’s a mini-boom in such mini farms. Scores of businesses like Farmscape are sprouting up nationwide, from My Backyard Farm in San Clemente to Your Backyard Farmer in Portland, Ore., and Freelance Farmers in New Haven, Conn.

Daily Comic Relief


US High schools ban naked weigh-ins for wrestling

No more naked weigh-ins in high school wrestling, not in this age of cell-phone cameras and easy access to the Internet. Among wrestling rules changes approved last week by the National Federation of State High School Associations is that starting next season competitors must weigh in wearing “suitable” undergarments.

That means something covering the buttocks, groin and (in the case of girls) the breasts. “The concern is technology. We’re getting into cell phones getting into weigh-in areas. It’s a privacy thing,” said Bob Colgate, assistant director of the Indianapolis-based association.

This is going to pay hell with some making their weight class - nude weigh-ins were so that wrestlers would not be forced to wrestle in a higher weight class in the first place. A wrestler weighing a true weight of 158 pounds would weigh at least 160 clothed in a minimal amount of cloth and therefore have to wrestle at the 160 pound weight class instead of the 150 pound weight class ... while the difference isn't much between the 150 and 160 pound weight class, it means a hellvua lot between 200 pounds and the unrestricted weight class ... 201 pounds against 300 pounds and someone is gonna get hurt (and it won't be the 300 pound wrestler).

Is social networking inherently anti-social?

The New York Times has an interesting article on the implications for kids of the growth of social network. If your kids text and chat online more than they use the phone or see their friends in person, is technology bringing them together, or driving them apart? The article notes how anti-social kids can use technology to communicate when they might not otherwise, thus bringing them out of their shells. But it also notes that if you spend most of your time communicating with someone via technology, do you lose the ability to size people up in person? And, are some kids now less interested in going out and meeting people as a result of technology - is it making it harder, or more uncomfortable, to meet people in person?

Being Bullied

One common issue increases the risk of being a bullying target by 63 percent, a new study finds.

Receding Ice & Stranded Bears Mean More Polar Bear Patrols

Photo: Itshears on Flickr
Some communities in Alaska are finding that the once-permanent but now receding Arctic sea ice is stranding some unwelcome visitors - of the polar bear kind. Researchers recently found that disappearing sea ice habitat (which is preferred by polar bears) is leading to unprecedented numbers of polar bears stressed out, stranded on land and wandering into human territory that they once avoided. To deal with the problem, some towns and villages are setting up polar bear patrols to guard human settlements.

Article continues: Receding Ice & Stranded Bears Mean More Polar Bear Patrols

U.S. gets disappointing motherhood ranking

An index of best and worst places to be a mother puts the U.S. even behind debt-ridden Greece. 

No More Baptisms in the Jordan River

jordan river photo
Photo via Abouid
Even the most famous and admired places aren't immune to the problems of abuse and pollution - the Jordan River being a prime example as it's expected to run dry by 2011 due to overexploitation, pollution and lack of regional management, according to Friends of the Earth, Middle East. Over 90% of the river's water has been diverted by Israel, Syria and Jordan, and what's left is an unappealing mix of sewage, saline water, and run-off from cropland. And by the end of 2011, there won't even be that left.
Article continues: No More Baptisms in the Jordan River - Expected to Run Dry by 2011

Space Monkey

Leo Burnett

Connecticut Attorney General Subpoenas Craigslist, Citing Prostitution Ads

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal (pictured) issued a subpoena today to Craigslist over the prostitution ads often displayed in the classifieds Web site's "casual encounters" section. Reports indicate that Craigslist may be earning over $35 million in revenue from these ads.

“The Craigslist brothel business seems booming--belying its promise to fight prostitution,” said Blumenthal, who is leading 39 states in the effort to regulate the site's screening process.

“The best evidence is the thousands of ads that remain on Craigslist--skimpily and slickly disguised with code words. We’re asking Craigslist for specific answers about steps to screen and stop sex-for-money offers--and whether the company is actually profiting from prostitution ads that it promised states and the public that it would try to block.”

Last week, Jim Buckmaster, CEO of the company, posted a piece on Craigslist's blog about the recent Twitter campaign to shut down CL personals.

"Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and we embrace all criticism as useful in improving our approach," Buckmaster wrote. "But cynical misuse of a cause as important as human trafficking as a pretense for imposing one’s own flavor of religious morality (”casual sex is evil”) strikes me as wrong on so many levels."

Buckmaster is a staunch defender of Craigslist's policies. In a recent issue of Wired, he defended Craigslist for the misuse of the Web site. "That the world would expect Craigslist to take responsibility for the rare violent criminal who lures victims through an ad strikes Buckmaster as absurd. He points to the thousands of people who die every year in auto accidents. "Does anybody call up the head of GM and say, 'Somebody just got killed using your product? How can you sleep at night? Don't you realize that a person is dead?'"

The big problem with Buckmaster's analogy is that many regulators did call up the head of GM over auto accidents. In fact, there were well over 100 lawsuits against GM in the 1960s over the safety of their products, which led to Ralph Nader's Unsafe at Any Speed, a study that significantly changed how the automobile industry was regulated, from the passing of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Let's just hope Craigslist's lawyers can make a more compelling argument than Buckmaster in court.

The subpoena seeks information about Craigslist's manual review process for objectionable advertisements, and also any documentation regarding the company's telephone verification system for its adult services section.

Worker's comp? Not while stripping

A Pennsylvania woman is facing insurance fraud charges after authorities say she worked as a stripper while collecting worker's compensation payments.

Legendary flops in automotive history

All told, it cost Ford more to repair the faulty Pintos than it cost to make them.  

Odds and Sods

Odds and Sods
In Cop News

Couple set up home in disused public lavatory with sea view
Tracy Woodhouse and her partner Graham Peck spotted hidden potential in the dilapidated Victorian and decided to renovate the building, which had been a public lavatory for nearly a century.