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Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Daily Drift

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Today in History

217 BC Carthaginian forces led by Hannibal destroy a Roman army under consul Gaius Flaminicy in a battle at Lake Trasimenus in central Italy.
1314 The Scots, under Robert the Bruce, defeat Edward II's army at Bannockburn.
1377 Richard II, who is still a child, succeeds his grandfather, Edward III.
1667 The Peace of Breda ends the Second Anglo-Dutch War as the Dutch cede New Amsterdam to the English.
1675 Christopher Wren begins work on rebuilding St. Paul's Cathedral in London after the Great Fire.
1791 The French royal family is arrested in Varennes.
1834 C. H. McCormick patents the first practical reaper.
1862 Union and Confederate forces skirmish at the Chickahominy Creek.
1863 In the second day of fighting, Confederate troops fails to dislodge a Union force at the Battle of LaFourche Crossing.
1887 Britain celebrates the golden jubilee of Queen Victoria.
1900 General Arthur MacArthur offers amnesty to Filipinos rebelling against American rule.
1908 Mulai Hafid again proclaims himself the true sultan of Morocco.
1911 Porforio Diaz, the ex-president of Mexico, exiles himself to Paris.
1915 Germany uses poison gas for the first time in warfare in the Argonne Forest.
1919 Germans scuttle their own fleet at Scapa Flow, Scotland.
1939 Baseball legend Lou Gehrig is forced to quit baseball because of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis–a disease which wastes muscles.
1942 German General Erwin Rommel captures the port city of Tobruk in North Africa.
1945 Japanese forces on Okinawa surrender to American troops.
1948 Dr. Peter Goldmark demonstrates his "long-playing" record.
1958 A federal judge allows Little Rock, Arkansas to delay school integration.
1963 France announces it will withdraw from the NATO fleet in the North Atlantic.
1964 Three civil rights workers disappear in Meridian, Mississippi.
1982 John Hinkley Jr. is found not guilty by reason of insanity for attempting to assassinate President Ronald Reagan.
1995 The U.S. Senate votes against the nomination of Dr. Henry W. Foster for Surgeon General.

Non Sequitur


State Worker's Close Encounter with an Alaskan Brown Bear

Drew Hamilton, a photographer and tech worker at the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, encounters a (luckily for him) friendly, satiated brown bear at the McNeil River State Game Sanctuary and Refuge in Alaska.
I don't know if Hamilton felt as nervous during his bear visit as I did watching the video of it, but when I see "Alaska" and "bear," all I can think of is Timothy Treadwell, The Grizzly Man, who had one encounter too many with Alaska's bear population and did not live to tell about it.

This repugican Calls Veteran’s Care ‘Entitlement’ We ‘Can’t Afford’

The next time any repugican accuses President Obama or the Democrats of not supporting our veterans, please point them in the direction of repugican Jeff Sessions from Alabama who, along with only two other Senators – both repugican – voted against the bi-partisan veterans bill which aimed to ease the healthcare delays for veterans by giving them more access to private care and allowing the Department of Veterans Affairs the funds to open more clinics and hire more medical staff. It passed the House of Representatives unanimously. 
But Sessions wasn’t feeling that bi-partisan “support the troops” facade that the repugican cabal loves to paint:
“I feel strongly we’ve got to do the right thing for our veterans. But I don’t think we should create a blank check, an unlimited entitlement program, now.”
This, coming from the cabal who charged America 24 billion dollars for an immigrant to read Green Eggs and Ham on the Senate floor.
And does Sessions really see this as an entitlement? After you and your entire cabal blasted President Obama and Veteran’s Affairs secretary Shinseki for being incompetent, you call this an entitlement? I would think our veterans receiving the healthcare they deserve, and not being placed on a 2+ month waiting list would be a priority, not an entitlement. However, it should be noted that “entitlement” (something you are entitled to) has taken on a different and very negative meaning in recent years because repugicans would like to demonize anyone, including veterans, who receive monetary benefits. 
The bill would require an emergency supplemental appropriation mainly for the opening of the 26 clinics. 
Sessions served in the Army reserve from 1973-1986. He is now a United States Senator, and has been one since 1997. He has his healthcare, and quite a good plan. He doesn’t have to wait 2+ months to see a doctor. He can see one right in the Capitol building if he really wanted to. If anything, Sessions is the one taking the entitlement.
Hey Senator Chickenhawk, those veterans offered you a blank check with their lives. Cut some funding in corporate subsidies them maybe you can talk about “entitlements.” Soldiers are Probably Slightly Less Boring Than Working at election time when repugicans need votes. Between elections, not so much. With that in mind, I guess someone forgot to tell Sessions that there’s an election this year. Maybe he’s not up until 2016?

The People Who Broke Iraq Have A Lot of Ideas About Fixing It Now

The crisis in Iraq has reached a critical point, as the Obama administration debates how to stop the Islamic State in Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) - also known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) - in its conquest of Iraqi cities and villages. All U.S. forces left Iraq in late 2011, the result of the Iraqis not wanting to extend the terms of the status of forces agreement that dictated how American troops could operate. That marked the end of a war that lasted nearly a decade in which a well-documented campaign to push for war against Saddam Hussein drowned out any criticism ahead of the launch of combat operations.
Now, those same architects are invited to write op-eds, speak on television panels, and generally give their opinion on today's Iraq with little to no pushback on just how wrong they got it a decade ago. The situation as it stands in Iraq is not the same as in 2003 and the administration is now considering air strikes to slow the progress of ISIS. But so as to not allow the ones who broke Iraq in the first place to go entirely unchallenged, here are some of the top advocates for launching the war in 2003 - along with their misleading statements and incorrect predictions - and what they have to say about Iraq now.

The wingnut Iraqi Lie the 'Mainstream' Media Won’t Let Die

The sad truth is that Iraq is in the shape it is today in because of what the US has already done.
Iraq is in bad shape, being torn apart by sectarian violence, and it is going to get worse before it gets better – if it ever gets better. The sad truth – because we as a nation are culpable – is that there is nothing the United States can do now can make it better. The sad truth is that Iraq is in the shape it is today in because of what America has already done.
How, we must ask ourselves now, is how will doing again what we did before undo what we did before?
The shrub’s criminal invasion in 2003 threw Iraq into chaos and his junta had no clear plans beyond toppling Saddam Hussein – unless you count plundering the country for all it was worth. That mission was accomplished very well.
We did not win there; indeed, we were lucky to get out after a decade of senseless fighting. Our purpose was ignoble from the beginning and the memory of the Iraq War does America no honor. And the wingnuts want to go back and do it again- forever, if necessary.
Pat Robertson, in blaming the shrub for Iraq the other day, has shown himself to be more intelligent (or at least more honest) than,
  • Karl Rove, who in 2011 claimed it wasn’t the shrub who wanted to invade Iraq, that Congress pushed him into it;
  • or Dick Cheney, who just the other day blamed Obama for misdeeds he knows perfectly well attach themselves to the administration of which he was a part;
  • or Donald Rumsfeld, who has tried to glorify the shrub’s misdeeds;
  • or William Kristol, who blamed Obama for the shrub’s signed agreement to pull out of Iraq.
Because somehow, in the wingnut warped mind, invading Iraq wasn’t the problem; leaving Iraq was.
Robertson, on the other hand, was correct in pointing out that the shrub is alone responsible for the current condition of Iraq. It doesn’t matter if the shrub was a puppet or a puppet master. It was his watch and he was commander-in-chief.
Robertson gave it to the shrub with both metaphorical barrels. Monday, on the 700 Club, Robertson said, “it was a great mistake to go in there.”
To sell the American people on Weapons of Mass Destruction, it was a lot of nonsense and we were sold a bill of goods.
We should have never gone into that country. As bad as Saddam Hussein was, he held those warring factions in check and he contained those radical Islamists.
Don’t be too quick to give Pat a pat on the back, however. Robertson is being less than forthcoming about his own support for the shrub during the war. As Media Matters reports,
“On the December 7 [2005] edition of christian Broadcasting Network’s The 700 Club, host Pat Robertson, founder of the christian cabal of America, said Democratic criticism of the Iraq war ‘amounts to treason’ and that ‘carping criticism … just doesn’t cut it’”:
ROBERTSON: We’ve won the war already, and for the Democrats to say we can’t win it — what kind of a statement is that? And furthermore, one of the fundamental principles we have in America is that the president is the commander in chief of the armed forces and attempts to undermine the commander in chief during time of war amounts to treason. I know we have an opportunity to express our points of view, but there is a time when we’re engaged in a combat situation that carping criticism against the commander in chief just doesn’t cut it. And I think that yes, we have freedom of speech — of course we do — but this has gone over the top and I think the Republicans are — well, they’ve taken advantage.
I guess the truth cuts it though, doesn’t it Pat, not that you’ll apologize now.
Then there is Glenn Beck of all people, who, if he did not exactly apologize, admitted those treasonous liberals were right all along.
Tuesday on his radio show, Beck said, “From the beginning, most people on the left were against going into Iraq. I wasn’t…. Liberals, you were right. We shouldn’t have.”
You have to look long and hard to find other wingnuts who will even admit the shrub existed, let alone started the Iraq War – and on pretexts as flimsy as Hitler used to invade Poland in 1939.
Beck went on to say,
Not one more life. Not one more life. Not one more dollar, not one more airplane, not one more bullet, not one more Marine, not one more arm or leg or eye. Not one more. This must end now. Now can’t we come together on that?
The facts are clear and they are beyond dispute, though not beyond the inevitable repugican obfuscation and dishonesty.
Coalition forces invaded Iraq on March 20, 2003. This was the grotesquely-named Operation Iraqi Freedom (timeline here), grotesque because what it was in reality was “Operation wingnutsGet Rich Quick.”
The shrub said at the time that “”helping Iraqis achieve a united, stable and free country will require our sustained commitment” but the only sustained commitment made was to plunder the Iraqi people.
Of course, then on May 1, 2003, he announced “Mission Accomplished,” which fails to explain the events of the past 11 years. In fact, the mission was so not accomplished that seven years later, in September 2010, it became Operation New Dawn.
Most particularly the shrub’s alleged success in Iraq fails to explain the recent upswing in violence and the rise of Hussein loyalists and ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. There is a dispute over acronym (see here) but no dispute at all that ISIS/ISIL is the worst thing to happen to Iraq since the shrub and his wingnut carpetbagging friends.
Those responsible are undeniably and unarguably war criminals according to International law the United States once supported. And they want to go back to Iraq, and the media is more than willing to entertain their views on the bizarre premise that people who have shown they don’t know how to do something are the people to ask for advice.
As reported Tuesday – and this will sound familiar to you since we did this already in 2003:
Basically, Kristol wants a bunch of US troops to go into Iraq to get into the middle of a civil war with no clear enemy or directive. In other words, create a bigger mess than it already is, and leave American blood on Iraqi soil.
And it worked so well last time! Ten years of war, without Obama’s 2008 win, could as easily have been 20. For wingnutss – and for the mainstream media – it is 2003 all over again. No clear enemy. No clear directive.
Harry Reid says that all we need to hear from Dick Cheney is an apology for Iraq. That goes also for , Dthe shrubonald Rumsfeld and the rest of their wingnut friends, and it goes double for the mainstream media, which has with malice aforethought perpetuated their lies for the past decade and is more than eager to do so again.

"World's Richest Terrorist Group" Continues Advance Through Iraq

Sunni insurgents advancing towards Baghdad took two more towns in Iraq last night, seizing control of Saadiyah and Jalawla as Iraqi security forces reportedly abandoned their posts without a fight.
The insurgents, operating under the banner of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), took $450 million in a bank heist during their takeover of Mosul on Monday, according to Mosul's mayor. As NBC News points out, the bounty makes ISIS "the world's richest terrorist group."
 The terrorists among the 1% other than the Koch brothers.

Cliven Bundy Nutjob Who Shot BLM Ranger At California Campground Identified

Brent-Douglas-Cole60-year old Brent Douglas Cole has been identified as the suspect believed to be responsible for shooting a California Highway Patrol officer and a Bureau of Land Management (BLM) ranger over the weekend. Cole shot the police officer and the BLM ranger at the South Yuba River campground in Nevada County, California. Cole was also shot during the confrontation and he is currently in stable condition in a Roseville hospital. The police officer and the ranger both survived the armed assault and their wounds are not considered life threatening.
Cole has had previous altercations with law enforcement. He was arrested in January on weapons charges for carrying a loaded firearm and for having a concealed firearm in a vehicle in violation of state law. Cole identifies himself as a supporter of the “sovereign citizen’s movement”, a cabal that opposes taxes and believes that citizens are entitled to reject laws they disagree with. In court documents filed earlier this year, Cole reveals his conspiratorial mindset, by arguing against his gun charges as follows:
I am being persecuted for being a gun owner, and for exercising my inherent Right by unwitting or unknowing accomplices of a seditious conspiracy against rights instituted by foreign powers inimical to the United States of America.
Cole’s social media presence is littered with links to InfoWars and other wingnut conspiracy sites, as well as posts illustrating his support for Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy in his dispute with the BLM over cattle grazing access.
The Bundy ranch standoff has become the 21st century equivalent of Ruby Ridge and Waco, where wingnut conspiracy nuts and trigger-happy militia types use the incident as a rallying cry to mobilize anti-government types to take action. The propagandists who ginned up hatred for law enforcement during the Bundy Ranch standoff are creating the same style of misguided anti-government rage that inspired Timothy McVeigh to bomb a federal building in Oklahoma City two decades ago. Cop killers Jerad and Amanda Miller were inspired by the “Patriot” groups that descended upon the Bundy Ranch taunting law enforcement officials with their assault rifles and defiant rhetoric. Brent Douglas Cole appears to have drawn from the same source of inspiration.
The eliminationist rhetoric of the extreme lunatic fringe, the conspiratorial fear-mongering of folks like Alex Jones, and the insurrectionist ideology of pro-gun groups, are not merely harmless kooky ideas, they are the intellectual fuel powering the next generation of cop killers and domestic terrorists. If we as a nation do not take the threat of homegrown right-wing terrorism seriously, the bloodshed will grow worse in the months ahead.

The wingnuts March On Washington to Demand Legalized Discrimination Against Same Sex Couples

Hatred is as dangerous a contagion as extremist christianity, and despite same-sex marriage bans being ruled unconstitutional across the nation, the National Organization for Marriage is behaving like the hate group they are…
A march is defined as walking in a military manner with a regular measured tread, but it can also be a group of people walking together not unlike a parade designating a special occasion such as a holiday. When thousands of people are bussed to a location and given signs to carry along a predetermined route, it may give the appearance of a being a celebratory parade, but it is more likely to serve a specific purpose such as in support for a specific policy or to demand certain rights marchers feel are being abridged by the government. Usually, the purpose of a march is intuited by the title the organizers bestowed on it, and if that is the case, the march today in Washington D.C. is in support of matrimony.
It is curious why heterosexuals would organize a “March For Marriage” when there is absolutely no need to garner public support for, protest against, or demand the government to establish their right right to marry the person they love. However, when one considers the sponsors of the march and the evangelical celebrities lending their support, it is a certainty the parade is to appeal for support to restrict the rights of other Americans to marry the person they love. Such is the purpose of the National Organization for Marriage’s second March for Marriage.
Organizers claim they are marching to demonstrate that among evangelicals dripping with old testament hatred for gays, there is still “deep and wide support” against same-sex marriage in spite of poll after survey revealing an ever-growing majority of Americans favor marriage equality. It is just as likely that even more Americans feel it is none of their business if same-sex couples marry, but if there is one thing Americans can count on, it is that evangelicals make other Americans’ personal lives their business; especially repugican evangelicals.
Two repugicans featured as high-profile hate spewers are Faux News’ host Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum as well as a bevy of extreme champions in the evangelical anti-gay movement. Still, it makes no sense that NOM is touting the march (and rally) as a show of grassroots support for traditional marriage as if there is an active campaign to stamp out heterosexual couples right to marry, but there is no making sense of people driven by religious hate or the need to lie to better spread their hate.
NOM promotes the march as a grassroots movement, but if last year’s march was indicative of today’s gathering, it is an astroturf event. Last year many attendees were bussed in, free of charge, from New York City by state senator Ruben Diaz (r) who claims to have sent 32 busloads of primarily Latinos to Washington to participate in the purely “grassroots” march and rally for marriage. This year Diaz promised to “dispatch 100 busses” from the Bronx as a result of a YouTube video promising rally attendees an all expenses paid trip to “visit the monuments in Washington and testify that jesus heals and saves and is the king we await.” It is unclear who is funding the “all expenses paid trips,” but there is no shortage of money in the evangelical hate movement so it is anyone’s guess who is footing the bill.
The list of anti-gay hate mongers is like a who’s who in the evangelical hate ranks including Un-American non-Values pussy-wimp Gary Bauer who condemns homosexuality as a “destructive lifestyle and a gay man, Doug Mainwaring who claims same-sex marriage is objectively evil. The repugican anti-Heritage fascade and Jim DeMint is well-represented by their in-house crusader for legal discrimination against the LGBT community as well as a dirty filthy preacher just back from speaking in Singapore to keep homosexuality a crime. Not to be outdone, San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone is attending despite several Bay Area religious leaders, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and 30,000 people who signed a Faithful America petition pleading with the catholic moron to withdraw.
It is likely the National Organization for Marriage organized the March for Marriage just to give voice to anti-gay evangelicals and little else. Even NOM co-founder Maggie Gallagher and Jennifer Roback Morse have conceded that nationwide marriage equality is inevitable. Still, there are enough repugicans, wealthy religious corporations like Hobby Lobby, and signatories of the Manhattan Declaration who oppose marriage equality and gays and are willing to fund and fight for legalized discrimination against the LGBT community.
Hatred is as dangerous a contagion as extremist christianity, and despite same-sex marriage bans being ruled unconstitutional across the nation, the National Organization for Marriage is behaving like a mortally wounded and cornered wild beast. The anti-gay, anti-marriage equality movement may be in its death throes, but it will not go away quietly as long as there are repugicans, evangelical celebrities spewing anti-gay hate, and extremist christians funding all-expenses paid trips to Washington to march for gay hatred; because they are not marching for marriage.

African American Woman Compared To Ape in Instagram Photo by Coworkers

Lisa Fisher, an African American woman, employed at Mermaid Manor Assisted living facility in Brooklyn, NY, was shocked to find her picture had been put up on Instragram by her coworkers in April 2013. It wasn’t just any picture either. These coworkers had located a picture of Ari (mistakenly referred to in the photo as Cornelius) from the 2001 movie, Planet of the Apes, and they placed her photo next to it. The caption asked if she resembled this ape.

censored Lisa Fister photo
By any standard, this would be seen as racial harassment by one’s coworkers, but Ms. Fisher did not find any sympathy or recourse when she reported the incident to her employer. Instead, she has ended up cutting back on her hours at work to try and avoid these coworkers who she reports continue to harass her. She is especially frustrated because a coworker who was not white was fired from the job for using an anti-white racial slur. When called for comment on the situation, a representative of Mermaid Manor Assisted Living said that they would be calling back. To date, they have not replied to the request for their side of the story.
As might be expected, the incident and the ongoing harassment, have taken an emotional toll on Ms. Fisher. She reports feeling “humiliated,” “very ashamed,” and even “like I have been raped.” She wants two outcomes right now from this situation: 1) to see these coworkers dismissed for their racist behavior and harassment of her; and 2) to have her story told so that people know what happened and understand what she has been going through.
Ms. Fisher does tell her story in a YouTube video in her hope that more people will learn of this racial harassment. She hopes that this hostile working environment will end. It remains to be seen what actions will eventually be taken.

'Dukes of Hazzard' style car crash caught on camera

A Jeep has been captured on camera going airborne in true Dukes of Hazzard fashion after clipping a parked car’s ramp-like trailer on a highway.
Motorist Jacob Meyer was traveling behind the Jeep on the I-70 in Riley County, Kansas, when he says it began swerving all over the road. It was then, Mr Meyer said, he decided to begin recording.
Seconds later the Jeep rammed right into an unattended truck with a trailer sitting on the opposite side of the road. But instead of coming to a stop, the Jeep went airborne - flipping over the top of the car before crashing to the ground.
Video has no sound.
"It was almost like something in a movie because most people in that situation would have swerved right or left to avoid the vehicle," Mr Meyer said. "It was almost as if he lined it up on person and to me it's just so unbelievable." The driver of the Jeep, 41-year-old Greg Harris, was the only person injured in the incident and was taken to hospital for treatment.
You can see the original video, complete with NSFW language, here.

Naked woman found vandalizing stranger’s home

A northwest Georgia woman is accused of damaging and flooding a stranger’s home while naked. At around 6:40pm on Friday, a Calhoun-area homeowner reported she’d returned home to find her home vandalized and a naked woman inside.
Deputies searched the home, where they found the suspect hiding in a closet, Sheriff Mitch Ralston said. The suspect, Suzanne Hussain, 34, lives about seven miles away and didn’t know the homeowner, Ralston said.
“Ms. Hussain was in fact nude, and was acting abnormally, but was taken into custody without further incident,” Ralston said. “The house was extensively damaged, including having been flooded.” Paramedics were called to scene to evaluate Hussain, who was then transported to Gordon Hospital, where she was treated and released.
Upon release from the hospital, Hussain was arrested, charged with burglary and criminal damage to property and booked into the Gordon County jail. Hussain remains in jail awaiting a bond amount, Ralston said. She was also being held on a probation violation for a prior charge of possession of methamphetamine.

Hypnotized professional singer sang during throat surgery to save her voice

Professional singer, Alama Kante, has sung through surgery to remove a tumor from her throat, so surgeons could avoid damaging her vocal cords. The Guinean singer, who is based in France, was given just a local anesthetic and hypnotized to help with the pain during the operation in Paris.
Kante was nervous about losing her voice, but in a "world first" her surgeon suggested she sing throughout. He said one slip of his scalpel could have destroyed her singing voice. Professor Giles Dhonneur, who is head of the anesthesia and intensive care department at Henri Mondor hospital, performed the operation in April with Kante singing as he worked.
Kante had a tumor on the parathyroid gland, but because she was singing during the "critical moments" the surgeon could be sure the operation "was going well". Professor Dhonneur said it was the first time a tumor has been removed using the technique, as the procedure would usually be carried out under general anesthetic. "The pain of such an operation is intolerable if you are fully awake.
"Only hypnosis enables you to stand it," he said. "She went into a trance listening to the words of the hypnotist. She went a long way away, to Africa. And she began to sing - it was amazing," he said. Kante, who has made a full recovery, revealed she had been asked before the operation if she wanted to "travel". "I let myself be guided. It's as though I was not in the operating theater at all, I was far away in Senegal," she said. Dhonneur said Kante had fallen silent at the end of the procedure, when "everyone held their breath" before she spoke, much to the relief of the room.



We're number - LAST, we're number LAST!

health care
For the fifth time in a row, the United States has been ranked last in a prominent think tank’s review of industrialized nation’s health care systems. Compared to other wealthy countries like Germany, France, Switzerland, and Australia, the U.S. lags far behind when it comes to ensuring health care access, efficiency, and equity: health ranking
Among the nations included in the Commonwealth Fund’s survey, the highest percentage of U.S. residents skip out on the medical care they need because they can’t afford it. Thirty-seven percent of Americans said they didn’t fill a prescription, visit a doctor, or seek out recommended medical care because they were worried about the cost; on the other end of the spectrum, just four percent of United Kingdom residents reported skimping on that care for the same concerns. That’s largely because the United States is the only country on the list that doesn’t offer universal health care, leaving a proportion of its population uninsured and unable to pay for medical services out of pocket.
The new report falls in line with previous research that has found Americans pay much more for their health care than the residents in other wealthy nations, even though those high price tags don’t necessarily correlate to better care. And the authors note that while other industrialized nations have enacted policy reforms to nudge their health systems in the right direction, the United States hasn’t significantly improved in these areas over the past decade.

7 signs that you're in a cult

Evangelical cult leader Mike Bickle proposed the following indicators of a cult.
1. Opposing critical thinking.
2. Isolating members and penalizing them for leaving.
3. Emphasizing special doctrines outside scripture.
4. Seeking inappropriate loyalty to their leaders.
5. Dishonoring the family unit.
6. Crossing biblical boundaries of behavior (versus sexual purity and personal ownership).
7. Separation from the cult.
Reasonable, and doubtless critical knowledge for those eager to differentiate their fiery brand of religion from, well, that. The grim irony, today, is that they're cited in Boze Herrington's story about a prayer group's journey from dormroom club to deadly, sexually-abusive abusive cult under "Tyler", a creep working under Bickle's International House of Prayer.
"Tyler was not an isolated individual," writes Herrington, "but the product of a phenomenally twisted cult system."
Isn't funny how a cult leader can identify a 'cult' but not his own cult.

The Truth About Eating Before Bed

"Eating before bed makes you gain fat." Sigh. Eating right before bed does not make you gain fat. It's actually quite the opposite. Eating before bed will not only help you build muscle, it will also improve recovery between training sessions, games and practices. Just be sure to follow these simple rules when you eat before bed.
Rule 1: Choose Slow-Digesting Protein
This can come from cottage cheese, chicken breast, lean turkey breast or casein supplements. Each of these protein sources contains protein that digests slowly and feeds the muscles throughout the night. They are also high in leucine, the amino acid responsible for stimulating the protein mTOR, which activates muscle protein synthesis. Consume 14-30 grams of slow-digesting protein 30 minutes before bed. Stay away from red meat, whey concentrate and isolate proteins, since these digest more quickly, leaving you without critical nutrients.
Rule 2: Choose Carbohydrates Wisely
Carbohydrates don't deserve their bad rap. The body needs them to replenish glycogen stores post-workout and to limit the rate of muscle protein breakdown. Having carbohydrates at night can diminish the rate at which muscle protein breakdown occurs while you sleep.
The key is to stick with high-fiber vegetables and fruits that are low in sugar and won't elicit too large of an insulin response, especially if your goals are to lose fat and build muscle. Cherries and berries are good selections, because they are low on the glycemic index. Each is high in vitamins C and E, which play important roles in controlling inflammation and soreness.
Stay away from starches high in sugar like candy, chips and bread. These foods generate a large insulin response, which aids in storing fat, and sugar can interfere with the sleep cycle. Consume under 20 grams of carbohydrates 30 to 60 minutes before bed.
Rule 3: Eat a Small Amount of Fat
Healthy fats from sources like oils and nuts are a great addition to your bedtime protein snack. Fats are resistant to water and, when ingested, slow the emptying of food in your stomach through the release of the hormone cholecystokinin. Therefore, the ingestion of fat helps those slow-digesting proteins feed your muscles even longer through the night. Almonds, nut butters and fish oil are great choices.

What Age Do People Get Married in Your State?

The average marrying age in the Netherlands is 30. The biggest differentiator of marriage age seems to be a country's income, with people in developed countries marrying later. How about the average marrying age in the US?
Are there regional or state influences? What seems like the right age for an average New Yorker might be way off for someone living in Idaho, for example. Whatever the explanation, be it religious values, state laws, cultural spirit, or a combination of the three, it seems that the 'norm' really depends on where you live. What Age Do People Get Married in Your State?

Bars in Alaska offer free pregnancy tests

Bars in Alaska have installed free pregnancy tests in their women's bathrooms in an effort to curb drinking among pregnant women. The tests are subsidized by the state of Alaska as part of a campaign to reduce fetal alcohol syndrome, which is more prevalent in Alaska than in any other state.
Alaska state Sen. Pete Kelly has been a vocal proponent of distributing free pregnancy tests.
"They're not that expensive," Kelly told the Anchorage Daily News when he introduced the idea in March. "They're a buck-fifty -- something like that, about two dollars -- per pregnancy test. We're going to get them in mass quantities and distribute them."
Kelly added he does not support distributing free birth control in bars.
The project has been successful in Minnesota, where tests are available at some bars and restaurants, as well as convenience stores and a youth center, Crowe said.

The Best Things You Can Do At Costco Without A Membership

It seems like everybody knows somebody or someone else who shops at Costco these days, buying massive packs of food stuffs and other stuffs they don’t necessarily need at a decent price, and if you don’t have a membership you might feel like you’re being left out of all those member type benefits and mega deals.
Truth is- there’s lots of cool stuff you can do at Costco without having to pay annual dues, and maybe if you hang around the store long enough they’ll make you an honorary member!
Buy some pizza while you have your eyes examined and stock up on some vodka, all without needing a card. Now that’s what I call free validation!

Daily Comic Relief


29 Weird Museums

Would you like to visit the Barbed Wire Museum? The Spam Museum? Or the Vent haven Museum of Ventriloquist Dummies? Sounds like a great idea to plan a road trip around! John Green tells us about the weirdest museums ever, many of which are open to the public daily. I’m surprised by how many of these I’m already familiar with because we’ve posted items about them here over the years. They’re all here together in the latest mental_floss video.

Tarot Mythology

The Surprising Origins Of The World's Most Misunderstood Cards
The earliest known tarot decks weren't designed with mysticism in mind; they were actually meant for playing a game similar to modern-day bridge. Wealthy families in 16th-century Italy commissioned expensive, artist-made decks known as 'carte da trionfi.' These cards were marked with suits of cups, swords, coins, and polo sticks, and courts consisting of a king and two male underlings. Tarot cards later incorporated queens, trumps, and the Fool to this system.
Collectors Weekly interviewed graphic designer and artist Bill Wolf among others, whose interest in tarot dates to his art-school days at Cooper Union in New York.

The Periodic Table Of Fictional Minerals

This infographic is a periodic table of metals, minerals and other elements that don't exist, except in popular culture (notably films, TV shows, animated series, games, comic books and literature). The table is a fun play on the real-life periodic table and demonstrates just how many fictional elements there are.

The Fermi Paradox

The Fermi paradox is the apparent contradiction between high estimates of the probability of the existence of extraterrestrial civilization and humanity's lack of contact with, or evidence for, such civilizations. When confronted with the topic of stars and galaxies, a question that tantalizes most humans is, 'Is there other intelligent life out there?

Chikungunya Spread

Fish-Eating Spiders

Fish-eating spiders discovered in all parts of the world

Spiders are traditionally viewed as predators of insects. Zoologists from […]

The noisy world of mud crabs

The noisy world of mud crabs

Fish are not silent crea­tures. Just like the ter­res­trial world, […]

Animal Pictures