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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, August 3, 2014

The Daily Drift

Ain't that the truth ..!
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Today in History

1347 Six burghers of the surrounded French city of Calais surrender to Edward III of England in hopes of relieving the siege.
1492 Christopher Columbus leaves Spain on his voyage to the new world.
1546 French printer Etienne Dolet, accused of heresy, blasphemy and sedition, is hanged and burned at the stake for printing reformist literature.
1553 Mary Tudor, the new Queen of England, enters London.
1610 Henry Hudson of England discovers a great bay on the east coast of Canada and names it for himself.
1692 French forces under Marshal Luxembourg defeat the English at the Battle of Steenkerke in the Netherlands.
1805 Mohammed Ali becomes the new ruler of Egypt.
1807 The trial of Aaron Burr begins. He is accused of plotting the secession of New England.
1864 Federal gunboats attack but do not capture Fort Gains, at the mouth of Mobile Bay, Alabama.
1882 Congress passes the Immigration Act, banning Chinese immigration for ten years.
1908 Allan Allensworth files the site plan for the first African-American town, Allensworth, California.
1911 Airplanes are used for the first time in a military capacity when Italian planes reconnoiter Turkish lines near Tripoli.
1914 Germany declares war on France.
1916 Sir Roger Casement is hanged for treason in England.
1945 Chinese troops under American General Joseph Stilwell take the town of Myitkyina from the Japanese.
1958 The first nuclear submarine USS Nautilus passes under the North Pole.
1967 President Lyndon B. Johnson announces plans to send 45,000 more troops to Vietnam.
1972 Former Beatle Paul McCartney announces formation of his new group, Wings.
1975 Louisiana Superdome dedicated.
1977 Radio Shack unveils TRS-80 personal computer, which with Apple and Commodore would form the "1977 Trinity." Its price and Radio Shack's established retail outlets made it a bestseller for several years.
1990 US commits naval forces to Persian Gulf region in wake of Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.
2004 Statue of Liberty's pedestal reopens to visitors after being closed following the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Non Sequitur


Did you know ...

That a woman overhears IBM execs say they wouldn't hire women because they get pregnant
That stand your ground laws lead to more homicides, don't deter violence
This asshole can't find a pen, writes entire NYT column about it
Hey, we keep saying this:  We don't mind if you're rich, we just mind if you cheat
Hey, keep your fingers crossed for the bad boss tax
That the first book ever printed in English just sold for over a million pounds
That alcohol improves your sense of smell - in moderation
About how to talk to repugicans about impeachment
That Darth Vader polls higher than all repugican presidential candidates
About the strange relationship between global warming denial and speaking English
That islam is just another scapegoat in u.s. history
That America's middle class: poorer than you think
Here's Chinese company that can 3d print 10 houses in a day
The world breaks temperature record for June after hottest May
About the subtle sexism in academia
That 41% of American women have been sexually harassed or assaulted in public
That the typical U.S. household is worth 1/3 less than a decade ago
That plastic trash islands forming in ocean garbage patch
About the largest sentence reduction in history approved for drug offenders
That as far as women are concerned, science has an image problem
Is cheap, fast internet possible?
13 things you need to know about social security disability as the repugican cabal tries to dismantle it

Put Some Spice In Your Life For Better Living

If you've watched t.v. shows like Food Network's Man vs. Food, you've seen people eat ridiculously hot, spicy foods.
Perhaps it makes good viewing, but perhaps you should try it yourself. New research says there are three health benefits that come with the spicy chemical in peppers, capsaicin.
Hot peppers might reduce your risk of developing tumors. You might also burn more calories. Your sex life may improve.
Pick your pepper and prepare for positive potential.

Lake mysteriously shows in drought-torn Tunisia

Hundreds enjoy new lake despite warnings that the water might be radioactive
by David Strege
Hundreds enjoy Gafsa Beach, a mysteriously lake that appeared out of nowhere in Tunisia. Photo is from the Lac de Gafsa Facebook page
Local shepherds in the drought-stricken region of Gafsa in the African country of Tunisia recently stumbled upon an incredible and mysterious sight: a beautiful lake, which emerged out of nowhere.
Some locals are calling it a miracle. Others are calling it a curse.
Hundreds of people are flocking to the new lake dubbed Gafsa Beach (a.k.a. Lac de Gafsa) to go swimming, diving, and scuba diving, or to simply find relief from the heat, this despite warnings by local authorities who claim the lake could be radioactive.
Public Safety director Hatef Ouigi told France 24 that the warning was a cautionary measure until experts can verify the water is not contaminated.
The lake, which covers 2 1/2 acres and is 32 to 59 feet deep, was discovered three weeks ago and already has its own Facebook page showing people enjoying the water, but officials are at a loss to explain its origins.
 TunisiaLakhdar Souid, a journalist in the region, told France 24 that he contacted a geologist from Gafsa’s college of science in an attempt to find an answer.
One of the theories presented to him was that seismic activity upset the water table, causing groundwater to rise to the surface, Souid said.
“For the time being, the origins of this lake remain a mystery, but our biggest concern right now is the quality of the water,” Souid told France 24. “This region is overflowing with large deposits of phosphate, which can leave behind radioactive residue [phosphate mining is the region’s main industry].
“So, there is a real risk that this water is contaminated and carcinogenic. On the first few days, the water was a clear, turquoise blue. Now, it is greenish and filled with algae, sure signs that the water is stagnant, which means it’s a perfect breeding ground for parasites and disease.”
Unfortunately, the warnings weren’t enough to keep people away.
“The site is certainly stunning and there are many large rocks perfect for diving,” Souid told France 24. “So to truly dissuade people from coming, we’ll need something more convincing than a little warning.”
Let’s just hope Gafsa Beach turns out to be a blessing and not a curse. Only time will tell.

When We Fight We Win!

Detroit Wins Major Victory In Water Battle
detroit water
It just goes to show you that sometimes when you fight for what’s right, and you fight hard, then good things begin to happen. In Detroit, there is no more important fight right now than the fight to prevent water shutoffs to poor and working families struggling to get by in a vicious and unforgiving economy.
On Friday morning, July 18, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) gave the keynote address for NN 14, and as she detailed each of the many issues where progressives should focus their activism, she repeated her now well-known rallying cry, “When We Fight, We Win!” with increasing intensity.
A couple of hours later, on the streets of downtown Detroit right outside of the Cobo Convention Center where NN14 was being held, over 1,000 people held a march and protest against the tens of thousands of shutoffs of water service. The City of Detroit has been turning off water service for residents and businesses with severely delinquent bills. Since July 2013, there have been over 42,000 water service shutoffs, leading to widespread local, national, and international criticism of the policies of the Detroit Water Department. Many smaller protests in Detroit and elsewhere followed the lead of the larger rally. The United Nations declared that the water shutoffs created a public health issue. Even Judge Steven W. Rhodes, who is tasked with overseeing the ongoing bankruptcy proceedings for the City of Detroit, issued a statement that led to a temporary 15-day moratorium on water shutoffs beginning July 21.
Michigan repugican Governor Rick Snyder issued a statement claiming that the number of people truly affected by the water shutoffs was relatively small, and Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr alleged that assistance was available for those truly in need. Officials at the Detroit Water Department issued a statement that many of those whose water had been shut off promptly paid their bills and had their water service restored. But the protests and negative press coverage continued, and so did the fight.
Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan
Finally, on Tuesday, July 29, because we fought, we won! Orr, the unelected emergency manager who was appointed by Michigan’s repugican Governor Rick Snyder, issued an order relinquishing some of his control over the Detroit Water and Sewage Department (DWSD) and giving that authority back to the duly elected Mayor Mike Duggan, who has not been in charge of the Detroit Water Department during this crisis. According to the order, which takes effect immediately, Mayor Duggan now has the authority to manage the DWSD and make appoints to its board. Partial power has been restored to the people.
Mayor Duggan immediately issued a statement, saying in part that the mass shutoffs have not only hurt the residents and businesses affected, but also that the way the delinquencies have been handled has hurt the reputation of the City of Detroit. Mr. Duggan continued that he might extend the moratorium on shutoffs as he meets with officials of the DWSD to work out equitable solutions, even as he made it clear that the water department customers must pay their bills. In his statement, Mayor Duggan explained:
“When some Detroit residents don’t pay their bills, those bills have to be paid by other Detroiters. These unpaid water bills are Detroit’s alone. So all bills that remain uncollected this year must be paid for by higher rates on all Detroiters next year.”
The plans to address the issues going forward include ensuring that policies and procedures to make it easier for people to actually pay their bills are put in place while also supporting those who are truly needy. Mayor Duggan stated:
“We will be developing a plan that allows those who are truly needy to access financial help and allows those who want to make payment arrangements to do so with shorter wait times. As for those who can pay and choose not to, we won’t force other Detroiters to pay their bills.”
Yes, residents and businesses must pay their water bills, but there also must be provisions to assist those in financial difficulty short of denying them the human right of water service. While some actually blame the poor for being poor, others protest and fight for equitable solutions, and show that when we fight the powers that be, we win.
Thank you, Senator Warren. And an even more special thank you to all the frontline activists and protesters who refused to give up on this fight. This is how we do it in Detroit, because this is who we are.

Americans Have Spent Enough Money On A Broken Plane To Buy Every Homeless Person A Mansion

Just days before its international debut at an airshow in the United Kingdom, the entire fleet of the Pentagon’s next generation fighter plane — known as the F-35 II Lightning, or the Joint Strike Fighter — has been grounded, highlighting just what a boondoggle the project has been. With the vast amounts spent so far on the aircraft, the United States could have worked wonders, including providing every homeless person in the U.S. a $600,000 home.

It’s hard to argue against the need to modernize aircraft used to defend the country and counter enemies overseas, especially if you’re a politician. But the Joint Strike Fighter program has been a mess almost since its inception, with massive cost overruns leading to its current acquisition price-tag of $398.6 billion — an increase of $7.4 billion since last year. That breaks down to costing about $49 billion per year since work began in 2006 and the project is seven years behind schedule. Over its life-cycle, estimated at about 55 years, operating and maintaining the F-35 fleet will cost the U.S. a little over $1 trillion. By contrast, the entirety of the Manhattan Project — which created the nuclear bomb from scratch — cost about $55 billion in today’s dollars.
“The political armor of the F-35 is as thick as the heads of the people who designed the airplane and its acquisition plan,” Winslow Wheeler, a former congressional staffer and outspoken critic of the F-35, recently told Foreign Policy about the longevity of the plane, despite the many setbacks it has endured. The support for the F-35 is so great in Congress that there’s actual a bipartisan Joint Strike Fighter Caucus dedicated to promoting it and keeping it alive.

What We Can Learn From Lawrence of Arabia

by Bill Moyers and Michael Winship
Col. T.E. Lawrence, shown Oct. 3, 1928. (AP Photo)
As fears grow of a widening war across the Middle East, fed by reports that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) envisions a region-wide, all controlling theocracy, we found ourselves talking about another war. The Great War – or World War I, as it would come to be called — was triggered one hundred years ago this month when an assassin shot and killed Austria’s Archduke Ferdinand in Sarajevo. Through a series of tangled alliances and a cascade of misunderstandings and blunders, that single act of violence brought on a bloody catastrophe. More than 37 million people were killed or wounded.
In America, if we reflect on World War I at all, we think mostly about the battlefields and trenches of Europe and tend to forget another front in that war — against the Ottoman Empire of the Turks that dominated the Middle East. A British Army officer named T.E. Lawrence became a hero in the Arab world when he led nomadic Bedouin tribes in battle against Turkish rule. Peter O’Toole immortalized him in the epic movie, “Lawrence of Arabia.”You may remember the scene when, after dynamiting the Hijaz railway and looting a Turkish supply train, Lawrence is asked by an American reporter, “What, in your opinion, do these people hope to gain from this war?”
“They hope to gain their freedom,” Lawrence replies, and when the journalist scoffs, insists, “They’re going to get it. I’m going to give it to them.”
At war’s end, Lawrence’s vision of Arab independence was shattered when the Versailles peace conference confirmed the carving of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Palestine into British and French spheres of influence; arbitrary boundaries drawn in the sand to satisfy the appetites of empire – Britain’s Foreign Office even called the former Ottoman lands “The Great Loot.”
The hopeful Lawrence drew his own “peace map” of the region, one that paid closer heed to tribal allegiances and rivalries. The map could have saved the world a lot of time, trouble and treasure, one historian said, providing the region “with a far better starting point than the crude imperial carve up.” Lawrence wrote to a British major in Cairo: “I’m afraid you will be delayed a long time, cleaning up all the messes and oddments we have left behind us.”
Since 2003, as the reckless invasion of Iraq unfolded, demand for Lawrence’s book, “Seven Pillars of Wisdom” increased eightfold. It was taught at the Pentagon and Sandhurst — Britain’s West Point — for its insights into fighting war in the Middle East. In 2010, Major Niel Smith, who had served as operations officer for the US Army and Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Center, told The Christian Science Monitor, “T.E. Lawrence has in some ways become the patron saint of the US Army advisory effort in Afghanistan and Iraq.”
But then and now, Lawrence’s understanding of the ancient and potent jealousies of the people among whom he had lived and fought generally was ignored. In 1920, he wrote for the Times of London an unsettling and prophetic article about Iraq – then under the thumb of the British. He decried the money spent, the number of troops and loss of life, and warned that his countrymen had been led “into a trap from which it will be hard to escape with dignity and honor. They have been tricked into it by a steady withholding of information…. Things have been far worse than we have been told, our administration more bloody and inefficient than the public knows. It… may soon be too inflamed for any ordinary cure. We are today not far from a disaster.”
Not for the last time in the Middle East would disaster come from the blundering ignorance and blinding arrogance of foreign intruders convinced by magical thinking of their own omnipotence and righteousness. How soon we forget. How often we repeat.

Pope Francis sounds too much like Obama to be honored by Congress, repugican says

by Scott Kaufman
Pope Francis via AFP
A bipartisan congressional resolution that would honor Pope Francis before his potential appearance in Philadelphia next year may not be acted upon because of Republican worries that the pontiff is perceived as being “too liberal,” The Hill reports.
House Resolution 440 aims to “congratulate Pope Francis on his election and recognize his inspirational statements and actions,” but according to one Republican backer of the legislation, the resolution is dead because Pope Francis is “sounding like Obama. [The pope] talks about equality — he actually used the term ‘trickle-down economics,’ which is politically charged.”
The repugicans are upset because of comments the Pope made concerning the free market. Last November, for example, Francis published his Evangelii Gandium, in which he noted that “[a]s long as the problems of the poor are not radically resolved by rejecting the absolute autonomy of markets and financial speculation and by attacking the structural causes of inequality, no solution will be found for the world’s problems or, for that matter, to any problems.”
He also specifically attacked President Ronald Reagan’s signature economic policy, “trickle-down theory,” writing that “[s]ome people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naive trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system.”
The resolution states that Pope Francis should be honored for, among other things, being the first pontiff from the Americas, as well as “his commitment to economic justice and improving the lives of the poor, and his outreach to individuals from all walks of life have been universally praised and are living examples of Jesus Christ’s message.”
Of the 221 co-sponsors of the legislation, only 19 are repugicans. Democratic Representative John Larson (CT) sent House Speaker John Boehner (r-OH) a letter last Friday requesting a vote on the resolution.
“To my knowledge this would be an historic first. I ask that you take a look at a bipartisan resolution introduced by Representative Peter King and myself, acknowledging the first Pope from the Americas … it is my sincere hope that you will consider this resolution for the suspension calendar for a vote,” Larson wrote in the letter obtained by The Hill.

Hypocrite Boehner Demands Obama Act Alone On Border Crisis While Suing Him For Executive Action

Speaker of the House John Boehner (r-OH) was forced to cancel the vote on his border legislation after he didn’t have enough votes to pass it. Boehner then issued a press release demanding that Obama act alone to secure the border.
Roll Call reported, “We don’t think we have the votes,” said Rep. Kay Granger, r-Texas, one of the architects of the bill. But she said the whip count was “very close” with about 214 supporters, including Democrats. “There are people who just don’t want to do anything,” she said. “They don’t want to spend the money.”
After being forced to pull their own bill, House repugican leaders issued a statement that was full of the sort of crazy-making that the nation has come to expect from the repugican cabal.
The statement told the president that the House is useless, so the president needs to act alone on the border crisis, “This situation shows the intense concern within our conference – and among the American people – about the need to ensure the security of our borders and the president’s refusal to faithfully execute our laws. There are numerous steps the president can and should be taking right now, without the need for congressional action, to secure our borders and ensure these children are returned swiftly and safely to their countries. For the past month, the House has been engaged in intensive efforts to pass legislation that would compel the president to do his job and ensure it can be done as quickly and compassionately as possible. Through an inclusive process, a border bill was built by listening to members and the American people that has the support not just of a majority of the majority in the House, but most of the House repugican coven. We will continue to work on solutions to the border crisis and other challenges facing our country.”
So, it is not okay for Obama to take executive action unless the House is paralyzed by repugican infighting? Speaker Boehner and the House repugicans can’t have it both ways. They can’t claim that President Obama is a tyrant, and then tell him to act without them.
On an issue as important as the humanitarian crisis on the border, the House of Representatives must weigh in. Boehner has to realize that his own inability do the most basic part of his job is not going to help his lawsuit.
Laughably, the neutered House repugican leadership is demanding that President Obama stop the flow of children over the border by just telling them to stop coming. Rep. Hal Rogers (r-KY), who is the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, said, “It’s stopping the inflow. He can do that just by his word, to announce that the policies he’s had in the past are rescinded and he’s not going to let these people in. Be more forceful; I don’t think it’s a matter of money, it’s a matter of sending the message out there.”
Rogers also said that Obama should use his power responsibly to stop the crisis. Thus confirming that repugicans only think that President Obama is a tyrant when he is doing something that they disagree with.
The next time someone in the media laments that both sides do it, and Washington is broken, remember this moment. Both sides don’t do it, and Washington isn’t broken. The repugican cabal has broken Washington because their constant infighting has made it impossible for the House repugicans to accomplish anything.
It isn’t President Obama’s fault that John Boehner has let the lunatics run the asylum.

As Wisconsin Supreme Court Upholds Vote Suppression, the repugican cabal Finds a New Way to Suppress the Vote

Even with changing the rules on voter ID which the Wisconsin Supreme Court upheld with a bit of tweaking, vote suppressors need more ways to intimidate voters.
Wisconsin’s Supreme Court upheld the state’s voter ID law in two separate challenges, by votes of 4-3 in a case brought by the Milwaukee Branch of the NAACP and 5-2 in a case brought by The League of Women Voters Wisconsin Education Network.
Curiously, the court had to write a “saving construction” to make the law constitutional. The issue was the fact that it costs $20 to get an in state birth certificate in order to get an acceptable Voter ID, even if the ID itself is available free of charge.  The Court’s majority acknowledged that was a problem in the challenge by the Milwaukee Branch for the NAACP.
The modest fees for documents necessary to prove identity would be a severe burden on the constitutional right to vote not because they would be difficult for some to pay. Rather, they would be a severe burden because the State of Wisconsin may not enact a law that requires any elector, rich or poor, to pay a fee of any amount to a government agency as a precondition to the elector’s exercising his or her constitutional right to vote.
Patrick Marley, Bruce Vielmetti and Jason Stein of the WJS  explain how the court fixed the problem with a little saving construction.
To keep the law intact, the majority employed a saving construction of the state’s administrative code to require the Division of Motor Vehicles to issue photo ID without requiring a birth certificate or other documents that require fees.
While repugicans celebrate this ruling, it like many of their celebrations may be premature. In April, a Federal Court ruled that Wisconsin’s Voter ID law violates the U.S. Constitution.  That ruling is being reviewed.  If it’s upheld, these rulings become moot.
It is interesting that not so long ago, the wingnut sought voter ID, initially to address statistically non-existent voter fraud.  Later it was about re-establishing confidence in the election system.  According to the wingnuts, new Voter ID laws were the answer to both of these statistically non-existent problems.
Then of course, repugicans needed partisan voter vigilante groups like True the Vote and The Voter Integrity Project, to interrogate and intimidate voters oh, and scrutinize poll workers.
Even those measures are not enough for the vote suppression crowd. It could be telling that even they recognize their voter ID law violates the U.S. Constitution.  That may explain why want to enable voter vigilante groups take photos and engage in video surveillance of voters and poll workers.
Chris Rickert of WSJ, reports Senator Mary Lazich and Rep. Kathy Bernier requested these creepy privileges at a Government Accountability Board meeting last week. The board rejected the request by a vote of 4-2 – at least for now.
As Rickert points out, this is about further intimidating low-income voters who are more likely to vote Democratic.  Someone who looks official shoving a camera in their faces, after braving the voter ID process and long lines may be the last straw.  At least, that’s what repugican extremists are hoping for.
As insulting as this latest attempt at intimidation is for voters, it also suggests that poll workers are too inept, too corrupt or the extensive the rules in place are insufficient. Of course, when one is paranoid, nothing is good enough to reassure them.
With a wage ranging from $8-$10/hr., poll workers in Wisconsin are not in it for the money.  Aside from the low pay, they must undergo biennial training – possibly without pay.  Moreover, if they violate the laws they must swear an oath to uphold, they can face a fine of $1,000, six months in prison or both.
Even if the low pay and the penalties for violating the law aren’t enough of a protection, existing law makes it impossible for poll workers to tamper with the election.
No doubt, repugicans indulge in paranoid fantasies about voter fraud, and now, poll workers rigging the system against them because that is so much easier than admitting that their ideology is too extreme and too un-American for most voters.

Supreme Court hands Monsanto victory over farmers on GMO seed patents, ability to sue

The US Supreme Court upheld biotech giant Monsanto’s claims on genetically-engineered seed patents and the company’s ability to sue farmers whose fields are inadvertently contaminated with Monsanto materials.
The high court left intact Monday a federal appeals court decision that threw out a 2011 lawsuit from the Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association and over 80 other plaintiffs against Monsanto that sought to challenge the agrochemical company’s aggressive claims on patents of genetically-modified seeds. The suit also aimed to curb Monsanto from suing anyone whose field is contaminated by such seeds.

States That Slashed Their Prison Populations Have Seen Disproportionate Drops In Crime, Too

The United States still has the highest incarceration rate in the world, but those few states that managed to significantly reduce their prison population over the last decade saw benefits other than reduced lock-up costs. They also saw their crime rate go down at a higher rate than the national average, according to a new report from the Sentencing Project.
The report bolsters the notion that locking up the wrong people doesn't improve public safety. In fact, "smart on crime" policies not only minimize punishment toward non-violent offenders; they can also re-allocate resources toward violent crime.
"The experiences of New York, New Jersey, and California demonstrate that it is possible to achieve substantial reductions in mass incarceration without compromising public safety," wrote Marc Mauer and Nazgol Ghandnoosh of the Sentencing Project.

Slithering thief stole wigs intended for cancer victims

A wig store in south west Houston is asking for the public's help in tracking down a sneaky burglar. The man was captured on surveillance video overnight on Monday slithering through Tiffani Chanel Luxury Hair.
He got into the business after breaking into a vacant space next door, punching a hole through a bathroom wall and crawling in. The intruder stayed low to the ground the entire time to avoid the motion-detecting alarm. "He was laying on the ground, (doing a) low crawl like they do in the military," explained store manager Chanie Speller.
"He's a snake. That's what they do." Surveillance footage shows the man inching his way behind the register, crawling over to the wigs and crouching onto his knees. He was only able to reach 11 wigs on the lowest shelf and some other merchandise. The store's owner says she was furious when she watched the video. "He should be ashamed. That's the lowest of the low," said owner Tiffani Speller.

Speller says the stolen wigs were going to be donated to a cancer makeover event in two weeks. She hopes the images of the culprit will blow the lid off of his low profile. "It's just pathetic, a grown man stealing wigs that are designated for cancer patients. It's just ridiculous," Speller said. The stolen wigs are estimated to be worth more than $3,000. Houston Police are investigating.

Lady arrested after throwing contents of old cup of dip spit at ex-boyfriend

According to the ex-boyfriend of Jenna Ketcham, she threw saliva and tobacco juice at him on July 12 at a filling station in Sebastian, Florida, a recently released arrest affidavit states. The ex-boyfriend, identified as the victim, told police he was filling his vehicle with fuel when Ketcham, 25, pulled in. The victim’s current girlfriend was in the passenger seat of the victim’s vehicle.
The victim hopped in his vehicle and locked the doors. After punching the window on the passenger side where the victim’s girlfriend sat, Ketcham went to the driver’s side. She remembered the key pad code and got the door open. She punched the victim in the face, and “grabbed an old cup of dip spit . . . and tossed its contents all over (the victim’s) right shoulder, leaving a brown stain on his T-shirt,” the affidavit states.
Dip spit is the mixture of saliva and tobacco juice produced by users of smokeless tobacco, also known as dip. Dip, which is not to be confused with chewing tobacco, is placed between the cheek and gum, and the resulting, brownish combination of saliva and dip juice is spit out, often into a cup. Ketcham then “gave (the victim) one final blow to the genitals with her fist,” the affidavit states.
Ketcham then got in her vehicle and left. The victim’s current girlfriend gave an account of the incident consistent with the victim. Police eventually spoke to Ketcham, and she denied striking the victim. The affidavit didn’t state whether the “dip spit” was produced by the victim, his current girlfriend or someone else entirely. Ketcham, of Sebastian, was arrested on charges including burglary of a conveyance and battery (domestic violence).

Man with dirty face arrested following Burger King incident

A man with a noticeably dirty face was arrested after an incident at a Burger King in Orlando, Florida, on Saturday. An intoxicated Jamie Henson, 36, placed an order at the International Drive store just before 3:20am but ran away before getting his food, according to his arrest report.
The Orlando man pushed BK's door open with such force, it came off the hinges. An officer responding to a vandalism/criminal mischief call found a man later identified as Henson standing in the center lane of International Drive while talking on a cellphone. As the officer approached, he could overhear Henson saying ' "the police are here" and he had to get off the phone." '
Henson ran from the officer, who caught him after a roughly 100-foot chase. "No force was used to detain Henson and no injuries were sustained by myself or Henson,'' Officer Matthew Davis said in his report. Then Henson appeared in his booking photo at the Orange County Jail with dirt on his face.
How he got so grimy wasn't addressed in the report. Burger King said Henson caused $500 in damage. "I was able place the door back on the hinges but noticed there was still damage to the hinges and closing mechanism," Davis said. Henson was charged with criminal mischief and resisting an officer without violence.



The Photography Of Jack Delano

The Man Who Colored The Forties
Jack Delano (1914-1997) was an American photographer. Delano was born as Jacob Ovcharov in Voroshilovka village in the Russian Empire and moved, with his parents and younger brother, to the United States in 1923.
Jack Delano's pictures of ordinary American life in the 1940s made him world famous as a photographer. He was also a trained musician, a composer, an illustrator and latterly a film and documentary maker.

Talking: Men vs Women

The stereotype that women talk more than men has been declared old and busted by a new study that examined just which gender was doing all of the blabbing. Trace has the study's conclusion, which you may find worth talking about. 

Tribe Emerges From Brazilian Jungle Possibly for First Time

Tribe Emerges From Brazilian Jungle Possibly for First …A group of indigenous people seen for the first time by the outside world as they emerged from a Brazilian jungle while fleeing illegal loggers and drug traffickers, according a Brazilian group that tracks such jungle tribes. The group of men are believed to be natives of Peru but they were filmed in northern Brazil on the banks of the Envira River which runs near the Peruvian border. The encounter took place within the last two weeks, but the video was released Thursday by the Brazilian indigenous authority FUNAI.
The tribal men are naked except for belts and loincloths and carry different weapons, including bows and arrows and spears in the 8-minute video.
A few of the tribal men are seen with markings on their faces and they all have styled their dark black hair in a similar bowl-cut fashion.
At one point one of the men blatantly steals a machete-type knife while another takes an ax from a settlement, despite shouts of protest by the villagers. Another member of their group grabs a blue material that looks like either a towel or a piece of clothing.
Brazilian authorities have not identified the group, but were able to determine that the dialect of the language that they're speaking is a form of the Panoan linguistic group.
The people they are interacting with are part of the Ashaninka ethnic group who reside in the area where the video was shot.
One Ashaninkan man, seen shirtless with a pair of baggy athletic shorts, wades into the river to hand the tribe members some bananas.
The group is one of about 15 "uncontacted tribal peoples" in Peru and has been forced from their homes in Peru "as a result of the illegal logging and drug trafficking which is rampant in the area," Rebecca Spooner of Survival International said.
"They weren't an unknown group. People have known about them for years," Spooner said. She said the Brazilian government has been monitoring the movements of the group, which she described as nomadic hunter gatherers.
The group's language barrier made it difficult to communicate, but Spooner said they indicated that their tribal elders had been killed in a confrontation.
"We don't know whether they were shot or how they were killed, but we do know that they were killed by the illegal settlers," Spooner said. "Their houses were set on fire, their elders were killed and they were shot at themselves."
They do not know when exactly this confrontation took place, but believe it was within the last year.
The tribe members seen in the video were part of a group that could be as large as 80 members, she said. They had melted back deep into the Brazilian jungle, but not before several contracted the flu, which Spooner said "could be deadly for the tribe."
She said the tribe members eat fish, hunt jungle game, fruit and plantains.
Spooner said that there is no way of knowing when or if they will reappear again.

Uncontacted Tribes

Last month's news of an isolated Amazon rainforest tribe in Brazil making contact with outsiders for the first time in almost two decades prompts the question: Are there many more such tribes left?

Investigating Unhealthy Mummies

After studying ancient Egyptian, Peruvian, Native American, and Mongolian mummies, medical researchers with a group known as the HORUS study team have found evidence for narrowing of ancient peoples' arteries due to high build up of fatty deposits, a condition known as atherosclerosis, which can contribute to a number of heart problems. In modern times, atherosclerosis can be caused by smoking, obesity, lack of activity, and other factors that were presumably not present in ancient cultures. Now the Horus study team is proposing that "non-traditional" causes of atherosclerosis could explain the prevalence of the condition among the mummies they have examined. In a World Heart Federation press release, the team points out that chronic infections caused by unhygienic conditions can produce prolonged inflammatory responses that lead to a build up in atherosclerotic plaque. Inhalation of smoke from fires might also cause atherosclerosis. The researchers found that the condition seems to be more common in female mummies, which could be explained by the fact that traditionally women spent more of their time near fires.

Dark Age Necropolis Unearthed in France

Researchers from France's public archaeology agency INRAP are excavating an early medieval necropolis in Normandy. Dating from the fifth to the seventh centuries A.D., the village cemetery held more than 300 burials and was not included in any surviving records from the time, an era when the Frankish Merovingian dynasty ruled the region. According to an INRAP press release, the team is particularly interested in how the site shows how ordinary people experienced the transition from the pagan beliefs of the Roman Empire to the rise of christianity. Earlier burials in the cemetery feature skeletons buried with lavish grave goods, such as a woman found wearing pins in the shape of bronze trumpets, and a man buried with twenty objects, including an ax, spear, dagger, and a silver coin placed in his mouth. Later burials do not seem to include as many artifacts, reflecting the growing influence of christianity, which did not encourage the villagers to take objects with them into the afterlife.

Bizarre Iron Age Rituals

Dozens of fighters found in Denmark were collected and ritually mutilated after spending months on the battlefield, archaeologists say. 

Oetzi Had Heart Disease Gene

Otzi the Iceman, a well-preserved mummy discovered in the Alps, may have had a genetic predisposition to heart disease, new research suggests.

Daily Comic Relief


Weirdly Wonky Binary Star System Discovered

There’s some weird things floating around in our galaxy, but this has to be one of the weirdest. A double star system with misaligned protoplanetary disks around 450 light-years from Earth has been discovered, potentially explaining why some exoplanet orbits can be wildly eccentric.
Using data from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile, astronomers have gotten a detailed look into the binary star system HK Tauri.

Study traces dinosaur evolution into early birds

This undated artist rendering provided by the journal Science shows the dinosaur lineage which evolved into birds shrank in body size continuously for 50 million years. From left are, the ancestral neotheropod, the ancestral tetanuran, the ancestral coelurosaur, the ancestral paravian and Archaeopteryx. Scientists have mapped how one group of dinosaurs evolved from the likes of the fearsome Tyrannosaurus rex and primitive Herrerasaurus to the welcome robin and cute hummingbird. The surprisingly steady shrinking and elegant evolution of some Triassic dinosaurs is detailed in the journal Science on Thursday. Comparing fossils of 120 different species and 1,500 skeletal features, especially leg bones, researchers constructed a detailed family tree of theropod dinosaurs. That suborder of dinos survives to this day as birds, however unrecognizable and improbable it sounds. (AP Photo/Davide Bonnadonna, Science)
Scientists have mapped how a group of fearsome, massive dinosaurs evolved and shrank to the likes of robins and hummingbirds.
Comparing fossils of 120 different species and 1,500 skeletal features, especially thigh bones, researchers constructed a detailed family tree for the class of two-legged meat-eaters called theropods. That suborder of dinos survives to this day as birds, however unrecognizable and improbable it sounds.
The steady downsizing and elegant evolution of the theropods is detailed in the journal Science on Thursday.
"They just kept on shrinking and shrinking and shrinking for about 50 million years," said study author Michael S. Y. Lee of the University of Adelaide in Australia. He called them "shape-shifters."
Lee and colleagues created a dinosaur version of the iconic ape-to-man drawing of human evolution. In this version, the lumbering large dinos shrink, getting more feathery and big-chested, until they are the earliest version of birds.
For a couple decades scientists have linked birds to this family of dinosaurs because they shared hollow bones, wishbones, feathers and other characteristics. But the Lee study gives the best picture of how steady and unusual theropod evolution was. The skeletons of theropods changed four times faster than other types of dinosaurs, the study said.
A few members of that dino family did not shrink, including T. rex, which is more of a distant cousin to birds than a direct ancestor, Lee said.
He said he and colleagues were surprised by just how consistently the theropods shrank over evolutionary time, while other types of dinosaurs showed ups and downs in body size.
The first theropods were large, weighing around 600 pounds. They roamed about 220 million to 230 million years ago. Then about 200 million years ago, when some of the creatures weighed about 360 pounds, the shrinking became faster and more prolonged, the study said. In just 25 million years, the beasts were slimmed down to barely 100 pounds. By 167 million years ago, 6-pound paravians, more direct ancestor of birds, were around.
And 163 million years ago the first birds, weighing less than two pounds, probably came on the scene, the study said
Paul Sereno, a dinosaur researcher at the University of Chicago who wasn't part of this study, praised Lee's work as innovative.
The steady size reduction shows "something very strange going on," Sereno said. "This is key to what went on at the origin of birds."
People may think bigger is better, but sometimes when it comes to evolution smaller can be better because bigger creatures are more likely to go extinct, Sereno said.
And when the theropods started shrinking there weren't many other small species that would compete with them, Lee said.
"The dinosaur ancestors of birds found a new niche and a new way of life," Lee said.
Sereno added, "When you are small, it's a totally different ball game. You can fly and glide and I think that's what drove it."

Animal Pictures