Welcome to ...

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.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
You're always willing to work hard, even when the results don't show up until far in the future.
You, more than most people, understand the value of laying groundwork and paying dues.
Not only should your efforts ensure long-lasting success, but after all the time, energy and sweat you've put into it, you should be better able to handle (and maintain) that success when it does arrive.

Today is:
Today is Wednesday, July 14, the 195th day of 2010.
There are 170 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holidays or celebrations are:
There are none.

The Sect Of Gadget Hackwrench

From the "You're kidding, right" Department:

Gadget Hackwrench is a Disney character from the Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers television series. She's a young female mouse and the team's pilot, mechanic and inventor.

A new religious cult centered around this Disney character has emerged in Russia, the Sect of Gadget Hackwrench. As one of the cult's members said: She is the divine being, the most untouched and perfect sibling of the great God on Earth. Why I love her? It's a stupid question, how I can't love the Godess?

Culinary DeLites

Culinary DeLites
One chain's cheddar biscuits are made from scratch and brushed with scampi butter.  

The popular raw dips are to blame for nearly one of every 25 outbreaks of food poisoning. 



Invisible Gorilla

The latest version of the famous awareness study adds a couple of dumbfounding twists. 

Gorillas Play a Game of Tag Just Like Humans

If you like to play the game of tag when you were a little kid, you’d get a kick out of this: scientists have discovered that gorillas also play it!
To study play-fighting among gorillas, scientists analyzed videos of 21 of the apes from six colonies in five European zoos collected over the course of three years.
In their games, "not only did the gorillas in our study hit their playmates and then run away chased by their playmates, but they also switched their roles when hit so the chaser became the chased and vice versa," said researcher Marina Davila Ross, a behavioral biologist at the University of Portsmouth in England. "There are a lot of similarities with the children’s game of tag." [...]
Instead of letting what might be a fair trade of blows happen, these hit-and-run games were shows of relatively unfair behavior, where the gorilla who starts the game tries to get away with tagging a fellow playmate without getting hit in return. Such games likely help the apes — and humans — learn how to deal with real conflict by testing what is acceptable with a safe crowd of peers and even parents, Davila Ross said.


Trivia for you: "Gorilla" comes from the Greek word meaning "tribe of hairy women." The animal was first described by Hanno the Navigator, a Carthaginian navigator in 480 BC.

The Moses Miracle Of Jindo

Jindo Island, in South Korea, is host to one of the world's most amazing natural phenomenons, called the Moses Miracle. Two times a year, at the beginning of May and in the middle of June, the waters between Jindo and Modo islands split and create a causeway 2.8 km (1.7 miles) long and 40 meters (131 feet) wide. The path lasts for roughly an hour and allows people from both places to meet halfway and celebrate.

A festival is dedicated to this natural wonder and people from all around the world attend every year. However the Moses Miracle was largely unknown until 1975, when a French ambassador visited South Korea and wrote about in a French Newspaper.

Earth is not as old as we thought ...

But the relig-o-wingnuts should not get all excited it's still older than their 'bible' says it is.
Researchers have calculated that the planet could have taken far longer to form following the birth of the solar system 4.567 billion years ago than scientists have previously believed...

Scientists have in the past estimated that the Earth's development, a process known as accretion where gas, dust and other material clumped together to form the planet, happened over just 30 million years.

But the new research suggests this process may have taken up to 100 million years – more than three times longer than previous estimates...

“We estimate that makes it about 4.467 billion years old – a mere youngster compared with the 4.537 billion-year-old planet we had previously imagined.”
Further details at The Telegraph.

Scientist believes gravity doesn't exist

A radical physicist says a new approach to gravity can solve cosmic puzzles.  

The driest place on the planet

There are areas along this 600-mile strip of land that haven't received a drop of rainfall — ever. 

Daily Ha Ha

My luck is so bad that if I bought a cemetery, people would stop dying.

~ Comedian Rodney Dangerfield

Dumb Crooks

Dumb Crooks
Police said two teens were arrested when one of them stole money from the tip jar of a northwestern Indiana ice cream shop just after they put their names on job applications.

A 36-year-old man was arrested on Monday and faces a felony arson charge after he allegedly set a Mercedes-Benz on fire and then posted photos of the burning vehicle on Facebook.

Armor Makers Busy Ahead Of Medieval Battle

Just like his Medieval counterparts 600 years ago armorer Tomasz Samula has hardly any time to outfit his knights before battle commences.

Don't Drink The Water

Swimmers in Austria told to stop swallowing water
A budget-conscious council in Austria has requested that swimmers stop swallowing water in a bid to save money. According to a survey carried out by managers at Vienna's 18 public swimming pools bathers are drinking 5,000 liters of chlorinated pool water a day.

Official Martin Kotinsky said: "A lot of water gets taken out in the material every time a swimmer uses the pool and it has to be replaced." He pointed out that, as well as replacing water, authorities had to spend £20 on chlorine - £1.11 per pool.

The council is also targeting people who wear Bermuda shorts to go bathing. Tests revealed that the average wearer takes 2.5 liters of water with them trapped in their swimwear every time they get out of the pool.

Mr Kotinsky said: "A lot of water gets taken out in the material every time a swimmer climbs in and out. That means that for every 1,000 visits to the pool we lose 2,500 liters of water." Complaints about shrinking pools come amid heatwave in Austria that has boosted the number of swimmers.

Couple lives trash-free for entire year

All of the garbage Amy and Adam Korst generated in 365 days fits into this box.

Yoda delivers driving directions

The Jedi master and other "Star Wars" icons lend their voices to GPS systems.  

Stunning spas in remote locales

Get far away from it all at these luxury destinations hidden in some very unusual places.

Non Sequitur

Non Sequitur

Backlash against pricey premium razors

Personally, the Full Beard is the best way to go.
Tired of upgrades and price hikes, some men are stockpiling cheaper models.  

Zimbabwe Diamonds

The African nation wants to dump its massive reserves despite international criticism. 

The first octopus millionaire?

Why not? Many have done much less for much more so good for the little guy. I hope he gets some tasty meals out of this.
Before the World Cup started, few could have foretold that one of the biggest winners of the tournament would be a psychic octopus. But now Paul, who correctly predicted the outcome of eight matches in a row, is on course to be the world's first millionaire octopus.

The mystic mollusc is retiring from the prediction business while he's ahead, his owner Sea Life announced on Tuesday. But as the company considers offers to "spread Paul's fame even further, without involving the canny cephalod directly" marketing experts say it could earn millions by selling his image for advertising products and services.

PR guru Max Clifford, best known for generating tabloid headlines such as "Freddie Starr ate my hamster," believes Paul, who was born in England, has ended his soothsaying days at exactly the right time. "Obviously his 100 percent record is remarkable but the minute he gets it wrong it all disappears," Clifford told CNN.
Paul the octopus is in high demand after a perfect run of predicting soccer game winners.  

It's The Economy Stupid

It's The Economy Stupid
A true double-dip recession could trigger widespread instability, says one economic expert.  
One small law firm is able to file 80,000 suits a year against people late on their bills.  
Foreclosures will get worse before they get better in these hard-hit metro areas.

The rules of engagement in rural Georgia

The rules of engagement in rural Georgia — from Monday's Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
[On April 26] Janice Wells called the Richland Police Department when she feared a prowler was outside her clapboard house in the rural west Georgia town.

The third-grade teacher had phoned for help. But within minutes of an officer coming to her backdoor, she was screaming in pain and begging not to be shocked again with a Taser. With each scream and cry, the officer threatened her with more shocks.

"All of it's just unreal to me. I was scared to death," Wells said in an interview with the AJC. "He kept tasing me and tasing me. My fingernails are still burned. My leg, back and my butt had a long scar on it for days."

The officer in question is Ryan Smith of the Lumpkin Police Department. Smith was called to back up an officer from the Richland Police Department because the sheriff's office in the county, Stewart, had no deputies to send.

Smith resigned as a result of the incident. The other officer involved, Tim Murphy of Richland PD, was fired for using pepper spray while trying to arrest Wells. . . . Stewart County Sheriff Larry Jones, who came to the house seconds after the last electric shock was administered, suspects the outcome would have been different if the woman had been white and the officers black.
Makes you feel all tingly and post-racial, doesn't it? Digby, who covers these stories regularly, has more, including this:
Smith resigned just as Ogle started the process to fire him, the chief said. Smith now works for the Chattahoochee County Sheriff's office.
But it's not like he didn't have options. I hear Blackwater's hiring.

The rules of engagement.

Daddy's Home

Daddy's Home

Media ban lifted in Gulf spill region

Now the concern is who will decide who represents the media.
Some of the best reporting of the events has come from independent sources online so hopefully they will be given equal access like the larger media outlets. Now we only have to count on BP security to accept this media ban since we all know how much they have respected the previous announcements.
The Coast Guard has modified a policy on safety zones around boom deployed on oiled coastlines, a policy news organizations had said unnecessarily restricted coverage of the impact of the BP oil spill and efforts to clean it up.

In a statement Monday night, the government's point man for the spill, retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, said new procedures permit credentialed news media free travel within the boom safety zones.

"I have put out a direction that the press are to have clear, unfettered access to this event, with two exceptions — if there is a safety or security concern," said Allen. "This boom is critical to the defense of the marshes and the beaches."

A connection between BP and release of terrorist convicted of bombing Pan Am flight 103?

Just when you honestly thought things couldn't get any worse for BP.
This is disgusting, if true.

From Mother Jones:
Is there a connection between BP and the terrorist convicted of bombing Pan Am Flight 103? Four senators want to know what sway the oil giant may have had in securing the release of Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset al-Megrahi in exchange for a $900 million offshore oil drilling deal with Libya.

Megrahi, the only person convicted of bombing that killed 270 people in 1988, was released from prison in Scotland last August. A Scottish court granted the release after doctors claimed that Megrahi was terminally ill from prostate cancer and had only three months to live. The release, of course, prompted plenty of outrage. The bomber is still alive, and just this week one of the doctors that gave that dire prognosis last year came forward to assert that the Libyan government paid him to make that claim. Now four senators–Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)—are calling on the State Department to investigate whether the oil giant was involved in the deal-making, and whether "BP might use blood money" to pay for damages in the Gulf of Mexico.

Taxpayers foot bill for Capitol Hill abuse

Payouts of nearly $1 million a year stem from hundreds of complaints by congressional employees.

Lunatic Fringe

Lunatic Fringe

When dealing with wingnuts ... Remember the rule: 
If they accuse someone of something, then they're already guilty of it.
Liars and Fools
Michele Bachmann (reptile-Minnesota) lies: President Obama is turning America into a "nation of slaves".
No, that was the shrub and the cabal - they failed but only barely.

Faux's Stuart Varney to caller who suggests Obama is intentionally destroying the economy: "You are so right".
Here again - wrong: It was the shrub and the cabal who DESTROYED the economy of the entire world.

Faux's Glenn Beck says a tiny but scary-sounding fringe group called the New Black Panthers is part of Obama's "army of thugs".
 Damn it nurse where's that Thorazine, this lunatic is dangerous to everyone.

It isn't free speech ...

It's dumb hate-filled doesn't know shit about history speech.

A billboard created by an Iowa tea party group comparing president Barack Obama to Adolf Hitler and Vladimir Lenin is being condemned by other tea party activists.The north Iowa tea party began displaying the sign in mason city last week.
The sign includes photos of Obama, Nazi leader Hitler and Communist leader Lenin with the statement: “Radical leaders prey on the fearful & naive.”

Now... really... who really is preying upon the fearful and naive?
Let me spell it out for you. G O P. 

(Cookie Jill posted this piece over at Skippy)

Repugicans give wealthy Americans a high five

And those Americans who are still looking for work...the middle finger.
It's unanimous among the repugicans that unemployed Americans are lazy, no good slobs and don't deserve help.
For weeks, Senate repugicans have filibustered an extension of unemployment benefits on the grounds that Democrats aren't willing to cut spending or raise taxes to pay for them. At the same time, the shrub tax cuts are set to expire, and repugicans want them to be renewed. For two days, repugican Jon Kyl has raised eyebrows by insisting that emergency aid to unemployed people -- what he called a "necessary evil" -- be paid for through either tax hikes or spending cuts, while the tax cuts (which mostly benefit wealthy people) not be offset in any way. Yesterday claimed that this view is shared by "most of the people in my party."
He was correct. (I know it's a first but strange things happen some time) .
Via - TPM

Repugican Rand Paul suggests the poor don't have it that bad

He actually said we should be proud of the way our poor live:
"They filmed a building in the poorer section of New York with some broken windows and they said, `Oh, this is how the poor in America lives,'" Paul said at last week's forum. "But it backfired on them because the Soviet citizens looked at that video closely and they saw flickering color television sets in all those windows."

Paul went on to say that "the poor in our country are enormously better off than the rest of the world. It doesn't mean we can't do better. But we have to acknowledge and be proud of our system of capitalism."
Who can argue with a movie?

Well, he does have a point ... at least our poor have garbage to eat other places there is no garbage for them to eat. Not to mention the cardboard boxes for shelter ...

Vaseline launches skin-whitening Facebook tool for India

Skincare group Vaseline has introduced a skin-lightening application for Facebook in India, enabling users to make their skin whiter in their profile pictures. The download is designed to promote Vaseline's range of skin-lightening creams for men, a huge and fast-growing market driven by fashion and a cultural preference for fairer skin.

The widget promises to "transform your face on Facebook with Vaseline Men" in a campaign fronted by Bollywood actor Shahid Kapur, who is depicted with his face divided into dark and fair halves. "We started campaign advertising (for the application) from the second week of June and the response has been pretty phenomenal," Pankaj Parihar from global advertising firm Omnicom, which designed the campaign, told AFP.

In 2005, Indian cosmetics giant Emani launched the first skin-whitening cream for men, called "Fair and Handsome", 27 years after the first cream for women. Since then a half dozen foreign brands have piled into the market for men, including Garnier, L'Oreal and Nivea, which promote the seemingly magical lightening qualities of their products in ubiquitous advertising.

In 2009, a poll of nearly 12,000 people by online dating site Shaadi.com, revealed that skin tone was considered the most important criteria when choosing a partner in three northern Indian states.

Bad Cops

Bad Cops

Dyslexic postman fined for dumping post because he couldn’t read addresses

A postman has escaped jail for dumping more than 400 letters in a field because he was dyslexic and struggled to read addresses on envelopes. Disgraced Wayne Daniels, 25, was an agency worker with Royal Mail for two years before he took up the role as postman but never told anyone about his learning disability.

His frustration at not understanding addresses boiled over during a daily round on March 16 this year when drove out to a small village and dumped 420 bills, letters and parcels in a field. A dog walker discovered the stash of mail in a bag by a river in Coates, near Whittlesey, Cambs. the next morning. An investigation found the letters should have been delivered to the Orton Goldhay area of Peterborough by Daniels and a search was carried out at his address.

Fran Tyler, mitigating, said his actions were caused by his dyslexia, which he had ”not discussed” with his employers. She said: ”He suffers from dyslexia and he was struggling to read the addresses.

”He said it was an impulsive action born out of frustration and said it was a disgrace to himself and to the Royal Mail. He had not discussed the problem with colleagues because of a mixture of pride and embarrassment.” Chair of the bench Linda Glover ordered Daniels to carry out 150 hours unpaid work and pay £750 costs and £24.66 compensation to Royal Mail.

Drug bust nets $84M worth of cocaine

Police say they've helped crack a major South American drugs syndicate with links to Australia.

Jail term for man who threatened to eat police officer

A man who threatened to eat a police officer has been jailed for 15 months. Patrick Wallace, 40, admitted committing the offense at Galashiels Police Station last June.

Selkirk Sheriff Court heard how he made the threat after being arrested and also claimed he had broken the jaws of three other constables. Defense lawyer Ross Dow said they were "empty threats" and that Wallace had been on a nine-hour drinking session and it had been the alcohol talking.

The court heard Wallace had only recently been released early from a prison term when he was arrested after an incident in a public house in Galashiels. He later became aggressive and made the threats towards officers in the cells at Galashiels Police Station.

Fiona Caldwell, prosecuting, described how Wallace told one officer he would eat him and boasted that he had broken the jaws of three police officers. On jailing Wallace, Sheriff Valerie Johnstone highlighted he had been making threats to police officers after being released early from a 10-month prison sentence and that he had previous convictions for violence.

Man strangled his wife during a caffeine-induced bout of insanity

A lawyer for Woody Smith claims the man strangled his wife during a caffeine-induced bout of insanity. Defense lawyer Shannon Sexton's request to show jurors caffeine-laced diet pills and the energy drink No Fear has caused the trial to be delayed. Instead of starting on Monday, it will begin on Aug. 30 before Campbell Circuit Judge Julie Reinhardt Ward. Prosecutors want time to test the chemical makeup of the pills and drinks that were given to investigators only four days ago. Smith's parents collected the items from their son's home and car after police searched each place, Sexton said.

"The jury is left to assume that the pills inside the bottles are the same substance as is written on the label - this is not an acceptable leap in a criminal trial," Commonwealth's Attorney Michelle Snodgrass said. She argued that if the pills and drinks are introduced - something she opposes - their scientific composition should at the very least be required. The fact that the pills allegedly came from Smith's home and car doesn't mean he was under their influence when he killed Amanda Hornsby-Smith, Snodgrass said.

Smith faces up to life in prison if found guilty of murder for using an extension cord to strangle his 28-year-old wife in May 2009 in the couple's Dayton home. Snodgrass even questioned where the pills and drinks came from since investigators do not recall seeing them during at least two searches of the residence and impound of the car. "It is just as likely that the pills came from GNC, from Wal-Mart, the Internet, or the defendant's parents' home," Snodgrass said.

Sexton appears to want the items introduced to support a mental-health defense. A psychological evaluation by the defense concluded that Smith was not criminally responsible for the killing. Psychologist Robert Noelker of Williamstown said Smith suffered from a brief psychotic disorder based on lack of sleep caused by consumption of high levels of caffeine, Ephedra or amphetamine-type substances. Noelker's diagnosis was based on Smith's claims he consumed the pills and drinks in the days leading up to the killing.



Versace mansion now a luxe hotel

The late designer's South Beach home is now a retreat with rooms starting at $1,200 a night. 

Wedding bells to ring for Levi and Bristol

The on-again, off-again parents of Sarah Palin's grandchild announce their engagement in a magazine.