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.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Daily Drift


First Drive-In Theater, Los Angeles, 1935
John Gutmann
First Drive-In Theater, Los Angeles, 1935

Carolina Naturally is read in 191 countries around the world daily.

Yesterday, Life got in the way of our publishing this blog fully so the abbreviated version was thrown out there. What can we say, it happens ...

Today is Make Up Your Own Holiday Day
Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Today in History

1517   The famous Flemish composer Heinrich Issac dies.
1799   Napoleon Bonaparte captures Jaffa, Palestine.
1804   Congress orders the removal of Indians east of the Mississippi River to Louisiana.
1804   The territory of New Orleans is organized in the Louisiana Purchase.
1827   German composer Ludwig Van Beethoven dies in Vienna. He had been deaf for the later part of his life, but said on his death bed "I shall hear in heaven."
1832   Famed western artist George Catlin begins his voyage up the Missouri River aboard the American Fur Company steamship Yellowstone.
1885   Eastman Film Co. manufactures the first commercial motion picture film.
1913   The Balkan allies take Adrianople.
1918   On the Western Front, the Germans take the French towns Noyon, Roye and Lihons.
1938   Herman Goering warns all Jews to leave Austria.
1942   The Germans begin sending Jews to Auschwitz in Poland.
1950   Senator Joe McCarthy names Owen Lattimore, an ex-State Department adviser, as a Soviet spy.
1951   The United States Air Force flag design is approved.
1953   Eisenhower offers increased aid to the French fighting in Indochina.
1953   Dr. Jonas Salk announces a new vaccine against polio.
1954   The United States sets off an H-bomb blast in the Marshall Islands, the second in four weeks.
1961   John F. Kennedy meets with British Premier Macmillan in Washington to discuss increased Communist involvement in Laos.
1969   The Soviet weather Satellite Meteor 1 is launched.
1969   Writer John Kennedy Toole commits suicide at the age of 32. His mother helps get his first and only novel, A Confederacy of Dunces, published. It goes on to win the 1981 Pulitzer Prize.
1979   The Camp David treaty is signed between Israel and Egypt.
1982   Ground is broken in Washington D.C. for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
1989   The first free elections take place in the Soviet Union. Boris Yeltsin is elected.
1992   An Indianapolis court finds heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson guilty of rape.

Non Sequitur

Tuesday, March 26

Who names their kid Jihad?

It’s a fascinating story, in part because Europe looks at freedom of speech much differently than we do in the states.  Our laws here tend to protect political speech more than in some European countries at least.  In this case, a young French (presumably Muslim, based on the rest of the article) 3-year-old boy named “Jihad” goes to nursery school wearing a t-shirt with the phrase “I am a bomb” written on the front, and on the back it reads “Jihad Born Sept. 11.”You can see a picture of the t-shirt on this page.
The thing is, the boy’s name is Jihad, and he was born on September 11.
Little Jihad’s teacher, thinking the shirt was praising the September 11 attacks, called the principal who called the mother.  The mom, who was born in Morocco, apologized and said had no intent to convey a political message.  Everyone thought the matter was over.
Well, the principal contacted his higher-ups, they contacted the city’s conservative mayor, who then contacted the local prosecutor.  So Jihad’s mom, and his uncle who bought the shirt (who also claims he never considered the shirt political, and didn’t even mean it as a joke), were called in by the police for questioning, which can be a particularly scary experience in France as compared to the US, where it’s still not fun.
Mom was asked all sorts of odd questions like whether she timed the birth for September 11, and uncle was questioned about terrorist links, of course.
Decoration in the Great Mosque of Paris, via Shutterstock.
Decoration in the Great Mosque of Paris
Eventually, the prosecutor did find a law to go after the mom and her brother (the boy’s uncle) for a 1918 law called “apology for a crime.”  I did some research on “apologie de crime” and it exists in Argentina as well (I’m sure among other places).  It seems to be exactly what it sounds like – publicly defending a crime, in this case the prosecutor alleges that the uncle and mother are defending the September 11 attacks.
Initially they were going after the mom and uncle for a several thousand dollar fine, but now have reduced their request to a symbolic one euro fine.  But, as the Post notes, good luck getting on an airplane ever again after being convicted of having sympathies with the September 11 attacks.
I really do find this story fascinating, because it gets to the heart of what I used to love about 60 Minutes back when we were kids, and LA Law (of all things) did a good job of this as well – presenting both sides of a story in a way that you full appreciated each side, and even felt your loyalties shifting as you learned more facts.  This story felt that way to me.  At first, I was outraged that a mother would put that shirt on her kid (not that I’d prosecute).  Now I’m not sure what to think.
Is it really possible that the mom and the uncle had no idea that the t-shirt would be perceived as it was?  And then there’s the larger question of countries have laws against such things as, basically, hate speech.  We protect such speech here, generally. In Europe, less so.  Then again, Europe has had a different history than we’ve had, in terms of the impact of hate on the continent (though this particular law was passed way before Hitler). But you could argue that slavery was our unique history based on hate, so perhaps things aren’t that different there than here, in terms of each locale having a history of discrimination.
What do you think?  Is naming your kid Jihad akin to that story we ran years about the couple that named their Adolf Hitler Campbell (his siblings were named JoyceLynn Aryan Nation and Honszlynn Hinler Jeanne)?  And should the mom face any kind of official blowback for putting a t-shirt like this on her kid, even if she did in fact mean it to be a reference to September 11 (which she denies)?

Did you know ...

About the dark side of the personal finance industry

The republicans can't hide their racist Obama hate

Why Democrats shouldn't put social security and medicare on the table

Why medical bills are killing us

Bob Dole Tells the repugican cabal to ‘close its doors to make repairs’

How can you be sure that your party is truly off course? Consistently bad polling is a start, an inability to win national elections is another clue. But for the final nail in the repugican cabal’s coffin, we have the revered former repugican Senator Bob Dole’s deep disappointment and shock at the modern day repugican cabal.
After the 89-year-old repugican wheeled his way back onto the Senate floor in 2012, hoping to pass an international treaty modeled on his historic Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, he got quite a shock. Dole was betrayed by his own cabal, including a senator from his own state of Kansas: The treaty was killed by his own Cabal.
The Boston Globe covered Dole’s reaction to the loss, which he blames on his party’s anti-government rhetoric. Dole called for the party to take a time-out to make repairs:
As Dole sat in his Washington law office in February, still stunned by the outcome, he blamed his own party and suggested a headline: “repugican cabal closes its doors to make repairs.” The repugican cabal, added Dole, one of the party’s most revered figures, “needs a timeout” to tone down the antigovernment rhetoric.
It must have been a shock for Dole to discover just how crazy his own cabal has become. It’s a shock for anyone who pays attention. Those who don’t pay attention play the false equivalency game, but the legislative process tells the truth.
In Dole’s case, we have a solid treaty based on existing legislation that had bipartisan support; a treaty first negotiated by former the shrub. Let that sink in. Among many other countries, Afghanistan (where we are allegedly fighting for freedom) has ratified this treaty, but we have not.
The treaty ratification was killed as all but 8 repugicans voted against it. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has dragged the Senate into the tea party repugican ditch (his filibuster record speaks for itself). The tea party was against it because they hate anything the UN does; they see the UN as imposing on American exceptionalism. They would rather have Mitt Romney taking orders from Netanhayu than be a part of the United Nations.
In order to justify this, the Republicans put the head of the Home School Legal ­Defense Fund on the stand (you can’t make this stuff up). He spewed the typical paranoia of the far right, hysterically proclaiming that ratifying this treaty would give the UN control over his kid because his kid wears glasses. Quote: “The definition of disability is not defined in the treaty and so, my kid wears glasses, now they’re disabled; now the UN gets control over them.”
Sounds crazy, right? After all, UN treaties are not American law, and we already have that law on the books and no one has come for the kids, not even anyone from the “evil” Democratic Party, as described by the home schooler head. Okay, so the home schooling advocate is a bit nuts. But wait. repugican Senators James Inhofe and Jim DeMint began echoing the home schooler’s hysteria, adding (falsely) that the treaty covered abortion. Oh yes, There’s nothing like the poison pill of the abortion debate to deliberately kill a bill/treaty/discussion.
Bob Dole, meet the new repugican cabal.
The modern day repugican cabal doesn’t believe government should do anything. Anything. Anything at all, except serve as a function to collect taxes that can be redistributed to corporate entities poised to grift off of the government (see Gov Rick Scott’s infamous Medicare fraud history as an example of the Great repugican cabal Privatization Heist).
Nothing echoes more clearly the problems in DC than Dole describing his governing principles during 89-90 session. When he was the Minority Leader in the Senate, he says he thought he was there to do something, and as such, he saw it as his “job” to meet the Democrats halfway. He described an agreement with the Democratic Majority Leader to never criticize one another, to build a relationship of trust. Dole concluded, “I thought when I was elected I was supposed to do something.”
Imagine that. He thought he was being paid to actually do something for the country other than swear fealty to the paranoid rantings of the repugican base.

The tea party is Boycotting Faux News Because It Is Too Liberal

The paranoia that Faux News created is turning against them, as tea party activists are boycotting the network for being too far left.
A group of tea party activists who are upset over Faux News for in their view not investigating Benghazi enough, and supporting immigration reform are boycotting the network.
This is the group’s second boycott, and they are claiming that they are taking down Faux News as punishment for becoming a leftist outlet, “Firstly, the ratings numbers. Despite the much shorter lead/advertising time, at first I was quite disappointed to see what seemed to be only an 8% drop in the ratings on Thursday, the 1st night. A number that slight is difficult to average out because ratings fluctuate within the the margin of error, but 8% seems about right. Then looking over the numbers, we see that FAUX is continually lower now than it had been before the first boycott. What has and is happening seems clear; of the 22% that walked away during the 1st boycott, it seems 10% – 12% never went back. That means the current 2nd boycott thus far is doing almost as well as the 1st one, except that the balance of the numbers past the 8% never stopped boycotting – they just went. Curiouser and Curiouser. We’ll see how the weekend shapes up; the numbers should be out by Monday or Tuesday at the latest.”
To show you how far off the ledge these folks have fallen, they had this to say about Bill O’Reilly’s ratings, “In related developments, media is now starting to laud O’Reilly’s ratings, even though they are half of what they were two years ago. IMO this is due entirely to their displaying approval of FAUX now that it has gone left, essentially abandoning FAUX’s core audience that made then wealthy, an act of unconscionable, cold-blooded betrayal.”
The group’s objective is to, “To restore the same scrutiny to the Office of the President by the media that was enjoyed by presidents past like Richard Nixon, and presumably with the same results.”
The tea partiers want Faux News to go far right, and they believe that this will lead to the impeachment of President Obama. (In their view, Obama should be impeached for Benghazi.)
Ironically, many of the activists who are outraged about Benghazi probably got their information from Faux News. Faux created this paranoid audience, so it is no surprise that like Frankenstein’s monster they have turned on their creator. There are many, many reasons why Faux News is on a downhill slide of decline, but going too far to the left isn’t one of them.
What this boycott is really about is that Faux News demonized the black president and Hispanics for years, so a segment of their audience is in full blown rebellion because Faux execs suggested that might be a good idea to tone down the immigrant hate by a couple of notches.
The tea partiers view this as a move to the left, when it reality it was a slight hat tip to demographics and reality.
The juiciest turn of the worm is that the very hate Faux News nurtured and grew, is now trying to destroy it.

Clean energy under attack from ALEC-backed fake freemarketeers

by Sami Grover
Despite overwhelming public support for clean energy and climate action, there is a coordinated state-by-state effort underway to undermine the renewable energy industry.
Led by the usual false cries for a "level playing field", and under the pretense of saving rate payers money, corporate-backed political movers are chipping away at renewable energy standards, all-the-while ignoring the massive direct and indirect subsidies enjoyed by the fossil fuel lobby.
Who's behind it all? I have a feeling you might be able to guess.
NC politicians attack bipartisan renewables legislation
In my own state of North Carolina, General Assembly members have introduced the absurdly named "“Affordable and Reliable Energy Act”, a bill which will repeal the state's Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard, despite it having been originally enacted with bipartisan support and the vocal approval of the state's main energy producers. Environmental activist and entrepreneur Tim Toben, whom I interviewed back in 2007 and who I consider to be a good friend, has a blistering take down of the absurdity of these moves:
A statewide public opinion survey taken at the end of January found 83 percent of the state’s registered voters agreed that state leaders and elected officials should seek more alternative and renewable energy sources. Seventy percent said the state having a policy that encourages greater use of renewable energy and energy efficiency is a good idea.
Sure, our conventional ways of producing electric power are needed and will continue for the foreseeable future to be dominant. But it would be foolhardy to crush North Carolina’s growing and important clean energy industry. So, if our General Assembly is true to its rhetoric about enhancing our economic climate, encouraging entrepreneurs and creating jobs, the misnamed “Affordable and Reliable Energy Act” will get forgotten in its committee maze.
Oil-backed lobby groups acting in the shadows
But if the public is so overwhelmingly in support of clean energy innovation, where in the world is such opposition coming from? As with efforts to use oil money to undermine science education, it appears the fingerprints of the secretive ALEC—the American Legislative Exchange Council—are all over this particular effort too. In fact the Institute for Southern Studies has a detailed profile of the ALEC- and fossil fuel industry connected politicians who are spearheading this effort.
Most interesting is the questionable role of Duke Energy, which may be saying one thing publicly, and quite another in private:
Duke Energy is on the record as supporting North Carolina's REPS law, but at the same time it's a paying member of ALEC (despite calls to resign) and helped finance the group's conference held last spring in the company's hometown of Charlotte, N.C. That's where the Electricity Freedom Act -- ALEC's model bill to repeal REPS -- was drafted by the Heartland Institute, a prominent climate science denial group that's received significant funding from fossil fuel interests including the Kochs and Exxon Mobil, another major funder of climate disinformation.
The playing field has never been level
Now, lest anyone be fooled by the free market rhetoric of a level playing field, let's get one thing straight—the playing field has been tipped for so long in favor of the fossil fuel monopolies that it is absurd to suggest that clean energy is getting more than its fair share. Whether we're talking direct subsidies and tax breaks for fossil fuels, or the indirect subsidy of a failure to put a price on carbon and leaving us all to shoulder the bill, the advantages run deep. Even the Federal Aid Highway Act was an indirect subsidy for an automobile-centric and oil driven economic paradigm that remains with us to this present day.
ALEC's nation-wide anti-renewables drive
As the Environmental Defense Fund documents, North Carolina is far from an isolated case. ALEC and the Heartland Institute are attacking renewable energy standards across 29 states, all the while draping their corporate bullying tactics with the age-old disguise of astroturf fiscal conservatism.
It's a move that should be met with considerable outrage, especially by true fiscal conservatives. The government has been picking a winner for years in this fight.
It's time the public had a say.

Coal company kicks 10,000 workers off health care

by Chris Tackett
Coal miners have a surprising ally in environmentalist and climate activist, Bill McKibben. Writing at Bloomberg, McKibben highlights the infuriating story of corporate socialism at Missouri's Peabody Energy Corp., now known as Patriot Coal Corp., or as McKibben calls it "America's Dirtiest Coal Company":
In a corporate sleight-of-hand, the promises won with a lifetime of hard work and hard bargaining disappeared first into a holding company. Now, if the bankruptcy judge agrees, they will disappear into thin air.
Or, to put it more explicitly, here’s a handwritten note from Shirley Wells of Sullivan, Kentucky: “Over the years thousands were killed in explosions, fires, roof falls, and many other accidents. ... Many others suffer from the slower death called black lung disease ... confined to their homes, dependent on oxygen.”
If Patriot has its way, they won’t have the medical cards that pay for their treatment. And as one miner after another points out in the letters, they bargained hard for those cards, preferring guaranteed medical care over higher wages precisely because of the toll the work took on their bodies.
If you've ever got the sense that some environmentalists consider the fossil fuel industry as being evil, it is stories like this that are to blame. So you might be surprised to see the 350.org founder and climate activist defending coal miners, but just like advocating for action to address climate change, defending these workers is the right and moral thing to do.
There's a famous quote by Mahatma Gandhi: "I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."
An appropriate remix of this quote could be, "I like fossil fuel workers, I do not like the fossil fuel industry. The fossil fuel industry is so unlike fossil fuel workers."
By this, I mean to say that by and large, the laborers that work in the fossil fuel industry are probably good, hard-working people. Many of these people are supporting families and simply doing the work available in their region. And we mourn for their families when they are killed on burning oil rigs or in exploding coal mines or suffer economic injustice.
Environmental debates are often framed with an Us Versus Them dynamic. If we are to achieve our goal of protecting the environment for future generations, we should strive not to let the debate be seen as a fight between environmentalists versus fossil fuel workers, but rather a fight between moral or immoral choices. As much as environmentalists may dislike the fossil fuel industry and want to see it put out of business, McKibben is right to highlight the immoral actions of Patriot coal and the gross injustice of treating workers in this way.

Random Celebrity Photo

Veruschka von Lehndorff and Dali
Veruschka von Lehndorff and Dali

Brain activity changes in children at risk of schizophrenia predate onset of symptoms

Research from the University of North Carolina has shown that children at risk of developing schizophrenia have brains that function differently than those not at risk. Brain scans of children who have parents or siblings [...]

Physical activity during youth may help reduce fracture risk in old age

Get out there and regularly kick that soccer ball around with your kids, you may be helping them prevent a broken hip when they are older, say researchers presenting their work at the American Orthopaedic [...]

Health News

Mediterranean Diet Aims to Keep Heart Healthy
A taste of the Mediterranean may just reduce one's chances of having a heart attack or stroke, according to health experts.

'Healthy' options on fast food menus may not be so healthy
"CBS This Morning" reports that while more and more fast food chains are adding so-called healthy options to their menus, they may not have your best interest at heart.

The good ol'days ...

The good old days…

Chlorox Tooth Paste

Chlorox Tooth Paste? I had to look it up to see if this was a hoax. I found a 1920 publication with a letter of praise to Nulyne Laboratories followed by an offer to send the toothpaste to any dentist free of charge to use on their patients. Mind you, current Chlorox products are not recommended for use on your teeth. More

Random Photo


her eye brows

Researchers Built Carna Botnet to Perform Internet Census

How big is the Internet? Two years ago, the anonymous researcher behind the Carna botnet joked around that they should try the classic telnet login with default root username and password on random IP addresses. They gave it a whirl, and in a short period of time, found thousands of unprotected device on the Net.
But to scan the entire Internet would require a botnet, so they built one.
Curt Hopkins of The Daily Dot wrote:
Carna turned out to be an effective way of measuring a big chunk of the Internet, but there’s one major catch: It’s illegal and invasive, which no doubt explains why the researcher has remained anonymous. Carna was, as per the name, a botnet, a type of malware secretly loaded into any device it could penetrate. At its peak, the botnet controlled an estimated 420,000 devices.
“We used the devices as a tool to work at the Internet scale,” wrote the Carna author. “We did this in the least invasive way possible and with the maximum respect to the privacy of the regular device users.”
Although Carna was allegedly designed to minimize intrusion and avoid damaging an infected device or process, it remains a virus that a hacker used to infect millions of devices with no notice and no permission.
Find out more over at the Daily Dot. | The research paper: Internet Census 2012

Australian motorist raced for his life against massive tornado

Two Australian men made a dramatic escape from a tornado in New South Wales after the twister touched down only metres from their car.

Daniel Clarke, 24, has told how he was driving from the town of Mulwala to nearby Barooga when the tornado, which was around 50 metres wide at its base, appeared in a field next to them.

YouTube link.

Nearby power lines exploded with a blue flash as they were hit by the whirling column of air. With rain and debris hammering the windscreen as the tornado advances towards them, Mr Clarke reverses at speed before performing a hand-brake turn in the road.

But the twister continues to barrel through the adjoining field, travelling almost parallel to their car at a speed of approximately 50mph. "I've never seen a demonstration of Mother Nature like that, it was just very intense and very scary," said Mr Clarke said.

Astronomical Picture of the Day


GRAIL Maps the Moon’s Gravity
Image Credit & Copyright: NASA, JPL-Caltech, MIT, GSFC

Small Asteroid Behind East Coast Meteor Friday

A 3-foot boulder was big enough to light up the skies over the East Coast, experts say.

Awesome Pictures

Frog taking cover

Miniature horse trained to help boy with rare illness

A miniature horse named Zoe is helping a special needs preschooler at an Alaska elementary school deal with mobility problems.

The horse is being trained to help 4-year-old Zaiden Beattie get around Russian Jack Elementary School in Anchorage. Zaiden has been diagnosed with A-T, or ataxia-telangiectasia, a genetic disorder that progressively robs him of his ability to coordinate movement, such as walking.

Zoe is the only service horse in an Alaska school and after multiple online searches, the only service horse Principal Elizabeth Hornbuckle could find at any school in the nation.

YouTube link.

Zaiden's mother, Lesley Zacharias, is training Zoe to help Zaiden lift himself out of a chair and walk steadily by grasping onto handles on the little horse's specially made harness. The horse is being trained to pick up objects and perform other tasks that could also help Zaiden.

Woman’s house burned down by snake she set on fire

Authorities believe a Texas homeowner's response to finding a snake in her yard may have led to the fire that destroyed her house on Wednesday.

The fire sparked at a home in the Liberty Eylau area of Bowie County. "While cleaning up, she saw snake, threw gasoline on the snake, lit the snake on fire," said Deputy Randall Baggett with the Bowie County Sheriff's Office. "The snake went into the brush pile and the brush pile caught the home on fire."

Despite the efforts of several fire departments that responded to the scene, the flames completely engulfed the home. It is a complete loss. A neighboring home was also damaged on one side. Liberty Eylau Fire Chief David Wesslehoft says they are still investigating the fire, but that it's not unusual for a burning animal to spread a fire.

YouTube link.

"Yes, it could happen with rabbits and big field mice. Once they start burning the grass, they get out of their hole, they have been known to catch fire and then take off." Still, the chief says, a fire started by a burning snake is a first for him. There has been no word from officials on whether charges will be filed.

Duck fathers a chicken, offering hope for extinct species

A duck has fathered a chicken -- seriously. Scientists from Dubai's Central Veterinary Research Laboratory say they have succeeded in using one species to produce another, a new technique which could be used to bring extinct species back to life.
To achieve the interspecies-produced offspring, researchers injected a male duck embryo with chicken germ cells -- those cells responsible for producing gametes (sperm or eggs). And as the duck grew into sexual maturity, its body began to produce reproductive cells belonging to the other species, allowing it to breed with a hen to create a chick.
Using this same technique, researchers believe that one day chickens could be modified with DNA from other bird types, like eagles or songbirds, to breed offspring belonging to a species not their own -- including those previously wiped out of existence.
Mike McGrew, a scientist working with the team in Dubai, says that the hope is to one day ”use this system to propagate endangered species or potentially bring back an extinct one.”
Not long ago, the notion of reviving lost species from extinction seemed pure science fiction, but embryonic researchers are well on their way to doing just that.

Kali the Polar Bear Cub

vJames Tazruk, an Inupiaq subsistence hunter in Point Lay, Alaska, shot a lone polar bear. Only when he rolled the carcass over did he realize the bear was a nursing mother. Tazruk and his hunting partner then searched for the bear's den, knowing a cub would be there. They found Kali hidden about 1500 feet away.
The big changes and long trips began when Tazruk entered the bear's three-chambered den

"I'm not going to hurt you. I'm going to take you home," he told it. "Just don't bite me."

Biologists from the Fish and Wildlife Service estimate the cub is 3 to 4 months old. Tazruk, who described the hunt in a phone interview Tuesday, said he scooped it in his arm like a puppy. He began the long ride back to Point Lay on his snowmachine, holding the bear close.

About 15 miles into the trip, Tazruk and his partner, Paul Stone, stopped at a cabin and grabbed a pair of ski pants, he said. They tied the legs together to form a pouch, and he cradled the bear cub in his lap against the handlebars.
After a night in the village, Kali was flown to the Alaska Zoo in Anchorage. The cub will be sent to the Buffalo Zoo when he is fully recovered, and will have a permanent home at the St. Louis Zoo when their new polar bear exhibit is ready in 2015. More 

See videos of Kali at Laughing Squid.

Great white shark got into cage with shark divers

A great white shark has been caught on camera getting his head into a cage and trying to kill the two divers inside.

Whilst on holiday in Gansbaai, South Africa, Bryan Plummer decided to do some thrill-seeking cage diving with his friends.

YouTube link.

Two of his fellow divers were in the shark-proof diving cage when a great white shark swam up to them and tried to gets inside the metal box.

Jaws wide open, the shark managed to get its head into the cage where it thrashed around trying to get to the divers. After a few seconds of thrashing around in the cage, the shark swims away and the divers miraculously come to the surface uninjured.

Enraged giraffe chased safari jeep for two miles

This video shows the moment a group of terrified safari tourists were attacked in their jeep by a two-and-a-half tonne giraffe. The animal galloped after the group, caught up with them, kicked at the driver and knocked off the right wing-mirror of the Toyota Land Cruiser.

The 13ft giant chased and barged the vehicle through two miles of South African savannah. The footage was captured by cameraman Rainer Schimpf, who said: "There was laughter; then tension; then fear." The giraffe saw the game vehicle miles away and started walking to it, intimidating the passengers.

Once the guests started feeling uncomfortable, the driver took off. Schimpf added: "Once he caught up with the car in a gallop the giraffe kicked at the driver and knocked off the right wing-mirror." The driver, who was unhurt, stopped and backed up.

YouTube link.

The giraffe is well-known in the park for its odd behavior but had never attacked humans before. It is thought a hormonal imbalance triggered the attack. The relieved passengers - who included German tourist Silke Ptaszynski, South Africans Sarene Carter and Mavis Carter, and driver Trevor - were able to laugh about their experience back at camp.

False Killer Whale Has Genuine Killer Smile

" 'Sup?," we imagine this False Killer Whale said to Doug Perrine of SeaPics as it swam on by. To which we imagine Doug replying back, "Oh, nothin' - please don't eat me."
The American marine wildlife photographer snapped this marvelous pic of the grinning cetacean off the shores of Kona, Hawaii. The Telegraph has the pic: Here.

Is It True That Birds Can't Fart?

Opinions are divided when it comes to this question. But Mike Murray, a veterinarian at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California, says: It's not that they can't. They just don't need to. Birds don't typically carry the same kinds of gas-forming bacteria in their gut as humans and other mammals to help digest food, so there's nothing to let loose.

Animal Pictures