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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.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
When it comes to balancing your personal life and your career, you're doing a wonderful job of knowing what to make your top priority at any given time.
In part, you have your excellent communication abilities to thank for that.
You know when to ask for the extra time you need, and your loved ones know that you back out of commitments only when you have to.
They have faith in you, so if you need some extra consideration, don't feel guilty about asking for it.

Some of our readers today have been in:
Rome, Lazio, Italy
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Birmingham, England, United Kingdom
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
Cork, Cork, Ireland
Berne, Bern, Switzerland
Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia
Cebu, Cebu City, Philippines
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
Bremen, Bremen, Germany
Stoke On Trent, England, United Kingdom
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
London, England, United Kingdom
Amsterdamn, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Tambov, Tambovskaya Oblast, Russia
Annecy, Rhone-Alpes, France
Manila, Manila, Philippines
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

as well as Slovakia, Malta, Bulgaria, Israel, Finland, Austria, Norway, Georgia, Mexico, Peru, Kuwait, Serbia, Bangladesh, Latvia, Greece, Scotland, Hong Kong, Denmark, Wales, Iran, Singapore, Poland, Taiwan, Sweden, Afghanistan, Belgium, Tibet, Croatia, Pakistan, Romania, Paraguay, Sudan, Vietnam, Argentina, Cambodia, Egypt, France, Estonia, Puerto Rico, Maldives, Qatar, Brazil, New Zealand, United Arab Emirates, Slovenia, China, Iraq, Ecuador, Nigeria, Colombia, Chile, Honduras, Paupa New Guinea, Moldova, Venezuela, Germany, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, Ireland, Czech Republic, Vietnam, Norway, Finland

and in cities across the United States such as La Crosse, Des Moines, Baton Rouge, Lafayette and more.

Today is:
Today is Sunday, June 26, the 177th day of 2011.
There are 188 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holiday or celebration is:
Log Cabin Day.

Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Celebrate The 4th Of July

We've put together a whole list of options and ways you can celebrate Independence Day on our special 4th of July section.

The Year 2010 Saw Record Extreme Weather

Dr. JeffMasters of Weather Underground was astonished at the weather extremes of 2010. There was so many weather events that he put off writing about it for six months.
Every year extraordinary weather events rock the Earth. Records that have stood centuries are broken. Great floods, droughts, and storms affect millions of people, and truly exceptional weather events unprecedented in human history may occur. But the wild roller-coaster ride of incredible weather events during 2010, in my mind, makes that year the planet’s most extraordinary year for extreme weather since reliable global upper-air data began in the late 1940s. Never in my 30 years as a meteorologist have I witnessed a year like 2010–the astonishing number of weather disasters and unprecedented wild swings in Earth’s atmospheric circulation were like nothing I’ve seen. The pace of incredible extreme weather events in the U.S. over the past few months have kept me so busy that I’ve been unable to write-up a retrospective look at the weather events of 2010. But I’ve finally managed to finish, so fasten your seat belts for a tour through the top twenty most remarkable weather events of 2010.
What follows is a rundown of weather events from “Snowmageddon” to record flooding the world over, with plenty of graphs, charts, and videos to explain them.

Corps says Mississippi River flooding damaged levees, needs up to $2 billion for repairs

The head of the group overseeing work by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says another floodway could be needed to relieve pressure on levees along the Mississippi River.

Parts of North Dakota city underwater

The biggest flood in area history swamps Minot, as the Souris River nears its crest.

As water ebbs in Minot, thoughts of recovery

The Souris River began a long, slow retreat in Minot on Sunday, leaving behind an arduous rebuilding job for more than 4,000 homeowners and hundreds of business operators, most of whom lack insurance to pay for it.

Wild pedestrian bridges

Traversing the Henderson Waves structure is most definitely a walk on the wild side.

Billy the Kid photo fetches $2.3million

Notorious Wild West gunslinger Billy the Kid paid 25 cents to have his photograph taken outside a New Mexico saloon in late 1880 or early 1881.

Keys to stronger passwords

If your password is "123456" or "qwerty," you're making it easy for hackers.  

Awesome Pictures


Promising health care careers

The medical field is projected to create millions of new positions between now and 2018.  

The Job Applicant

John Q. Nerd gets his Master's Degree from the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science here in Technology Square and spends two months looking for a job. Unfortunately, DEC is laying people off and Wang went bankrupt. He's running low on rent money so he decides to work in the Central Square McDonald's on weekends and look for a job during the week.

After John hands in an employment application, the manager tells that he isn't qualified.

"Not qualified!?! I've got a Master's degree in computer science from MIT!" says John.

The McDonald's manager replies, "I'm sorry, but all of our computer scientists have PhDs."

High-tax states for retirees

In one punishing place, the top income tax rate is 7.85% and pensions are fully taxable.  

Money tips from millionaires

One writer opens up his finances to a group of wealthy men — each worth at least $10 million.  

And I Quote

Happy Birthday George Orwell

Repugicans pull out of budget talks over taxes for the richest of the rich

This is ridiculous but hey, this is the modern repugican party.
Their only purpose is to say no to everything, especially when it might impact the wealthiest Americans.
The repugicans ought to change their name to the "Screw the middle class party" and show some honesty in advertising.
The repugicans are already on the ropes with their Medicare-killing plan but the Democrats need to keep going and make it clear to the public that the repugicans don't care at all about the budget nor do they care about the survival of the middle class.
Democrats, Van Hollen said, had offered repugicans “a menu of options” on how to reform the tax code to achieve the desired target of $4 trillion in savings over the next 10 to 12 years, but that none of those choices were palatable to the repugicans.

On that so-called “menu” of revenue options were oil subsidies, corporate jet taxes and “phasing out” of deductions and tax preferences for Americans who make more than $500,000, which Van Hollen said was “along the lines” of last winter’s bipartisan deficit commission recommendations.

“What we’ve seen on the repugican side, overall, is all take and no give. Any serious approach requires compromise and that’s going to be required to achieve the adult moment Speaker Boehner called for,” Van Hollen said. “Until the repugicans are more worried about reducing the deficit than they are about Grover Norquist, then we’ve got a problem.”

Latest From TSA

The security theater stories just keep on coming: Elderly woman asked to remove adult diaper during TSA search.
A woman has filed a complaint with federal authorities over how her elderly mother was treated at Northwest Florida Regional Airport last weekend.
Jean Weber of Destin filed a complaint with the Department of Homeland Security after her 95-year-old mother was detained and extensively searched last Saturday while trying to board a plane to fly to Michigan to be with family members during the final stages of her battle with leukemia.
Her mother, who was in a wheelchair, was asked to remove an adult diaper in order to complete a pat-down search.
“It’s something I couldn’t imagine happening on American soil,” Weber said Friday. “Here is my mother, 95 years old, 105 pounds, barely able to stand, and then this.”
“TSA cannot exempt any group from screening because we know from intelligence that there are terrorists out there that would then exploit that vulnerability,” she said.
Except that they just did, a few days ago.

Chief justice uneasy about cameras in courtroom

Chief Justice John Roberts says he's concerned about the effect that having television cameras in the Supreme Court would have on lawyers and justices.He's afraid if the American people actually see him and his cronies raping them, they might turn on him.
He is incorrect - there is no 'might' about it



Gushers highlight potential of Pennsylvania gas field

Two unexpected gushers in northeastern Pennsylvania are helping to illustrate the enormous potential of the Marcellus Shale natural gas field.

China eyes Canada oil, US's energy nest egg

In the northern reaches of Alberta lies a vast reserve of oil that the U.S. views as a pillar of its future energy needs.

China frees another political prisoner

Released from prison but how free are they to speak openly?
Al Jazeera:
One of China's most prominent dissidents, Hu Jia, has been released after serving after serving more than three years in jail on subversion charges.

"He is back home with his parents and me," his wife, Zeng Jingyan, told Reuters in a telephone interview.

Hu Jia was arrested in December 2007 after a long period of confinement at his home. He was sentenced in April 2008 for "incitement to subvert state power."

Hu had written a series of articles ahead of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games criticising the Chinese government on the state of human rights in China.

His long-scheduled release in the early hours of Sunday followed the freeing of prominent artist and activist Ai Weiwei. The releases came while Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao was visiting Europe on trips to Hungary, Britain and Germany.

Rebels in Libya's western mountains clash with Gadhafi forces, advance toward capital

Rebels in Libya's western mountains said Sunday they are advancing and are battling Moammar Gadhafi's forces in a town southwest of the capital, ramping up pressure against government troops on a second front.

E. coli strain behind German deaths apparently resurfaces in France

The strain of E. coli blamed for 46 deaths in Germany appears to have resurfaced in France, the French Ministry of Health said.

Wizard of Id


Ten essential laundry tips

The key to sparkling clothing is what you do before loading the washer. 

Diet rules to break

Ignoring standard thinking could actually help you slim down — and keep the pounds off.  

Healthy Living

Warning signs you should never ignore


Slim gene's health risks

The "lean gene" contributes to major problems often associated with obesity, a study says.  

Global diabetes epidemic balloons to 350 million

The number of adults with diabetes worldwide has more than doubled since 1980 to 347 million, a far larger number than previously thought and one that suggests costs of treating the disease will also balloon.

Diabetes a Major Concern Among Young People
At 20, Erika Rodriguez struggles to do the adult thing and manage the Type 2 diabetes that's remained stubbornly uncontrolled since she was diagnosed in junior high.

Quality of Lfe


Science News

Researchers develop an approach to switch on genes with a blue light; a technique that could one day help regulate blood sugar levels.

Stupidity Is Contagious

College students were asked to read a story about a rather daft person, and then take a test. They did worse on that test than a control group that read a story about a non-idiot:
Sixty-three Austrian students read “Slow on the Uptake,” about Meier, who wakes, is confused by an adage on his calendar, gets drunk, attends a soccer match and misses the outcome because he brawls. The students either summarized the story or underlined passages where Meier differed from them. A control group of 18 read a story with an innocuous protagonist.
Afterward, on a difficult test covering geography, science and the arts, the students who had read about Meier but not underlined how he differed from them scored from 30% to 32%, compared to about 37% for the control group and for students who distanced themselves from the character.
Hollywood mentioned this tendency a few years ago.

Everyone should already know this ...

... but for the few who don't ... science proves whining is annoying.

Mystery of used-car prices

The old rule of thumb says a car loses 10% of its value the instant it leaves the dealership.  

Red Leaf


World's ugliest dog crowned

The annual Northern California affair attracts a feisty pack of four-legged friends.  



The Centaur

Dudley Do-Right

Clever dog conquers stairs

The dreaded neck cone may be a medical necessity, but Lucy isn't going to let it be an obstacle.

When Dinner Fights Back


The World's Ugliest Animals


We can't all be beautiful. A series of photos of the world's ugliest animals.

Elk rescues drowning marmot at zoo

In an unlikely rescue at an Idaho zoo, an elk helped save a drowning marmot. Zoo keepers thought Shooter, a 4-year-old elk, was trying to climb in a tank because he was sniffing and pawing at it.

But after he was able to position his antlers, they watched him reach into the water and grab a marmot out. The elk then set him on the ground and began nudging him with his hoof.

"We're not sure if he just sensed that this marmot was in distress or whether he didn't like it in his way. He spent quite a bit of time like planning how to grab it," said Dr. Joy Fox of the Pocatello Zoo.

After a little time catching his breath, the rescued marmot scampered home, much to the delight of zoo keepers.

Shark gives surfers surprise

An unknowing photographer films a spinner shark playing with a surfer in Florida.  

Animal Pictures