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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 16, 2015

The Daily Drift

Welcome to the Expanded Sunday Edition of  Carolina Naturally.
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Today in History

1513 Henry VIII of England and Emperor Maximilian defeat the French at Guinegatte, France, in the Battle of the Spurs.
1777 France declares a state of bankruptcy.
1780 American troops are badly defeated by the British at the Battle of Camden, South Carolina.
1812 American General William Hull surrenders Detroit without resistance to a smaller British force under General Issac Brock.
1858 U.S. President James Buchanan and Britain’s Queen Victoria exchange messages inaugurating the first transatlantic telegraph line.
1861 Union and Confederate forces clash near Fredericktown and Kirkville, Missouri.
1863 Union General William S. Rosecrans moves his army south from Tullahoma, Tennessee to attack Confederate forces in Chattanooga.
1896 Gold is discovered in the Klondike of Canada’s Yukon Territory, setting off the Klondike Gold Rush.
1914 Liege, Belgium, falls to the German army.
1945 Lieutenant General Jonathan Wainwright, who was taken prisoner by the Japanese on Corregidor on May 6, 1942, is released from a POW camp in Manchuria by U.S. troops.
1965 The Watts riots end in south-central Los Angeles after six days.
1977 Elvis Presley dies of a heart attack in the upstairs bedroom suite area of his Graceland Mansion in Memphis, Tennessee.
1984 The safe of the sunken ocean liner Andrea Doria is opened on TV after three decades, revealing cash and certificates but no other valuables.
1986 Sudanese rebels shoot down a Sudanese Airways plane, killing 57 people.
1987 Astrological alignment of sun, moon and six planets marks what believers maintain is the dawning of a New Age.
1988 IBM introduces artificial intelligence software.
1990 Iraq orders 2,500 Americans and 4,000 British nationals in Kuwait to Iraq, in the aftermath of Iraq’s invasion of that country.
2012 In South Africa police fire on striking mine workers, killing at least 34.

The Iranian Hostage Crisis

West Germany's Secret Role in Ending the Drama
by Klaus Wiegrefe
Iranian Hostage Crisis: West Germany's Secret Role in Ending the Drama
In 1981, Jimmy Carter said the world could never know West Germany's role in the negotiations for the release of 52 hostages from the US Embassy in Tehran. New research sheds light on the important part the country played in ending the crisis. More

Atheists Have Higher IQs and Self Esteem Than Religious People

According to a new study, atheists tend to have higher IQs than people who adhere to any particular religion.In addition to having higher IQs and even self esteem, atheists demonstrated higher self-control and were more self-sufficient – making them non-reliant on the comfort aspects that religion provides for most people.
From The Daily Mail:
The University of Rochester psychologists behind the study defined religion as involvement in some or all parts of a belief.
They defined intelligence as the ‘ability to reason, plan, solve problems, think abstractly, comprehend complex ideas, learn quickly, and learn from experience’.
In their conclusions, they said: ‘Most extant explanations (of a negative relation) share one central theme – the premise that religious beliefs are irrational, not anchored in science, not testable and, therefore, unappealing to intelligent people who ‘know better’.
‘Intelligent people typically spend more time in school – a form of self-regulation that may yield long-term benefits.
‘More intelligent people getting higher level jobs and better employment and higher salary may lead to higher self-esteem, and encourage personal control beliefs.’
The study even extended to children, showing that more intelligent kids were more likely to be the ones who stayed home from cult.

Concerning Grammar

REM Sleep Triggers Imagery in 'Mind's Eye'

Rapid eye movement during sleep triggers the parts of our brain involved in processing visual images while we are awake.

Listening to music reduces your pain after surgery

Confirmed: Listening to music reduces your pain after surgery

Cornered by Claustrophobia

In 1879, a physician named Benjamin Ball coined the term claustrophobia after observing patients of his who had some trouble with both closed spaces and heights. Over time, the list of spaces that could cause the disorder has grown long.

Kids With Disabilities Sue Texas For Cutting Their Medicaid Services

"Those rates will force Texas Medicaid providers to cease providing services critical to the health and development of Texas’ most vulnerable residents, its children.”

Journalist Murdered For Criticizing Star Soccer Player

What this incident signifies is that the regime in Azerbaijan may be aware of growing discontent among the masses due to corruption and a faltering economy.

A Fireball Exploded In This Man’s Face, And Now He’s Suing The Nearby Fracking Operation

Methane from fracking allegedly built up in Cody Murray's pump house, then exploded, burning his face, hands, neck, and back.

Georgia Cult Kicks Out 92-Year-Old Woman Because She Didn’t Tithe Enough While Sick

Georgia Church Kicks Out 92-Year-Old Woman Because She Didn’t Tithe Enough While Sick (VIDEO)After a period of extended illness, a 92-year-old woman found that her church was kicking her out because she didn’t give jesus enough money while she was sick.

Boston’s Top Cop Wants To Restrict Your Right To Record The Cop Who Is Beating You

Boston’s Top Cop Wants To Restrict Your Right To Record The Cop Who Is Beating You (VIDEO)
Boston Police Commissioner William Evans wants to restrict your First Amendment right to film police.

Newly Released Police Video Shows Ralkina Jones Predict Her Own Death In Custody

Newly Released Police Video Shows Ralkina Jones Predict Her Own Death In Custody (VIDEO)
“I don’t want to die in your cell.”
Read more

Woman’s Truck Burned In Racist Attack

(Image courtesy of up.anv.bz screen capture composite) Nicole Rhodes of Youngstown, Ohio, is not sleeping so well lately after her truck was torched shortly after she received threatening letters outside the...

The Rise, Fall, and Revival of All-American Whiskey

Americans have always loved their whiskey. Even George Washington had his own distillery. Colonists in the north made their own rye, while those further south came up with bourbon. Eventually glass bottles were developed. When Americans loved whiskey too much, there was always someone else who wanted them to reel it back in, which led to Prohibition. But even then, we found ways around it. One way was medicinal whiskey. Noah Rothbaum, author of the book The Art of American Whiskey, tells us about it.
I had known medicinal whiskeys were available at this time, but I assumed they came in nondescript bottles, like rubbing alcohol or aspirin. But of course, they didn’t. They were packaged in these beautiful, engaging, and highly illustrated boxes and bottles, which shows that, in fact, the whole medicinal whiskey business was not about “medicine” but about letting people continue to drink whiskey.

Before Prohibition, whiskey was prescribed for a range of real symptoms and illnesses, but after alcohol was outlawed, I think it was prescribed for things like the common cold or stress or anxiety as a way to get around the law. I imagine a lot of prescriptions were for subjective conditions. I think it’s an accurate parallel to some of the marijuana clinics today, with prescriptions ranging from the legitimate to the recreational.

Obviously, these companies were still trying to sell and market their products during Prohibition, and the ones that survived had to demonstrate they already had large supplies of whiskey already on hand since they weren’t allowed to make new whiskey. You also had a lot of consolidation, as companies that were allowed to bottle medicinal whiskey ran low on stock and acquired companies that hadn’t been permitted to bottle it. The government also eventually declared a distiller’s holiday because they ran out of medicinal stock, and this allowed them to make more. It shows how much of this “medicine” was actually being sold.
And the day Prohibition ended, there was plenty of whiskey available to celebrate, as if it had been manufactured along -which it had. Read about the history of whiskey in America at Collectors Weekly. 

This is a State-Owned Chinese Pharmaceutical Company

State-owned Harbin Pharmaceutical Group is China's second-biggest drug maker. When the company posted these photos of their facility on their website, it sparked outrage in the country and beyond. The photos showed lavish architectural features and fixtures seemingly fit more for a palace than a pharma building: intricately carved wood corridors, gold foil inlays, triple-tiered crystal chandeliers and marble columns. Cost of the construction of the building was reportedly over 93 million yuan (15 million USD).
Residents of the neighborhood surrounding the company were incensed that just months prior to the photo revelation, Harbin was charged with illegally discharging wastewater, waste gas and industrial waste. Corporate response to the accusations was that they had no money to address the problems.
One user on the "Chinese Twitter" Sina Weibo wrote,
“It’s a palace which is built on the pain of millions of patients.”
Another posted:
“Now I finally know why Chinese people can’t afford to go to the doctor and buy medicines.”
See additional photos and read more on this story in this article. 

22 Bizarre Conspiracy Theories

We love to hear about conspiracy theories. Some of us believe them, while others of us are amazed at what people can come up with… just when you think you’ve hear it a lll, here comes something new. John Green goes over some you are familiar with and others that may be new to you, in the latest episode of the mental_floss List Show. The Illuminati is responsible for LeBron James joining the Miami Heat? Some people think so!

Chinese cave ‘graffiti’ tells a 500-year story of climate change and impact on society

Chinese cave 'graffiti' tells a 500-year story of climate change and impact on societyChinese cave ‘graffiti’ tells a 500-year story of climate change and impact on society

An international team of researchers, including scientists from the University of Cambridge, has discovered unique ‘graffiti’ on the walls of a cave in central China, which describes the effects drought […]

'Sea Monster' Figurehead Emerges From Baltic Sea

Representing a ferocious creature with lion ears and crocodile-like mouth, the 660-pound figurehead stood at the prow of 15th-century ship.

During Mass Extinction, No Species Safe. Not Even Us

Dominant species spread across the globe are just as vulnerable during a mass extinction event as more fragile ones confined to a single locale. 

Raisins on the vine ...

Production could be down, although quality will remain high, experts say.

'Danger Days' Just Around the Corner

Warming temperatures are about to push U.S. cities into a new regime where danger days become much more common. 

Earth News

Record heat continues across much of the West, helping to deepen drought and fuel wildfires.
See some of the dramatic shots from social media of the 18 wildfires burning across the state.
There's been no increase in solar activity since 1700, a new study reports, so humans aren't off the hook for climate change. 

Astronomical News

Mercury and Pluto features were among the places the public helped name in the past year -- where else can we (officially) leave our cosmic mark?
Astronomers have discovered the smallest supermassive black hole lurking in the center of a dwarf galaxy around 340 million light-years away. Small it may be, but it could help to unlock some pretty hefty black hole mysteries.
On July 29, with ESA's Rosetta spacecraft in orbital tow, the 2.5-mile-long Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko fired its brightest jet yet since Rosetta's arrival just over a full year ago.
Through extremely high precision measurements of a pulsar orbiting a white dwarf star, astronomers have found that the gravitational constant, which dictates the force of gravity, is 'reassuringly constant' throughout the universe.

Carnivorous Plant Devours Aggressive Asian Hornets

A plant that's not even native to Europe has shown it will happily eat the region's aggressive pests.

Gardening with Chickens and Picket Fences

by Rebecca Nickols
fence035As a gardener and a chicken keeper, I’m always trying new ways to coexist with my free ranging flock. I’ve given presentations through my local Extension Center and Master Gardener chapter on how I take advantage of the benefits of having backyard chickens (free fertilizer and pest control) and at the same time protect my gardens from their foraging frenzy!
Even though there are some plants that the flock are not that fond of, I’ve come to the conclusion that the only way to truly protect your garden from the chickens’ constant scratching, pecking, dust bathing, nibbling – is a fence. Either contain your flock in a run or put a fence around your garden. otherwise your garden will become their smorgasbord and they’ll pretty much take over the new seedlings and freshly tilled soil as their favorite spot.
To protect my vegetable garden I purchased decorative 4′ metal fence panels from my local hardware store. They were easy to install and have worked well for several years to keep the girls away from my harvest. The panels were $10 each – for a large garden this might be a little costly, but I like the look and the simplicity of the installation.
fencehensI also have a large butterfly garden that I have had much longer than I have had hens…  It’s full of wildflowers and around 15 host plants of native Missouri butterflies. Host plants are the specific plants that each species of butterflies will lay their eggs on. For example a monarch butterfly will only lay eggs on milkweed and this is the only plant the monarch caterpillar will eat. The chickens are not at all interested in the established native wildflowers and shrubs in this garden, but I’ve had trouble planting young transplants or sowing seeds.
girls258A couple of years ago I tried elevating bird netting above the seedlings, but the plants were still too small to survive the hens’ scratching when I removed the netting. Another attempt I had was to place chicken wire directly on the soil and plant young bedding plants within the wire openings. The chickens didn’t like walking on the wire, but it was hard for me to weed around the plants – and it looked a little odd. Even if I could protect the plants, the flock still made a mess of the mulched paths throughout the garden…
This year I had a new idea – which is really an old technique used by chicken keepers for generations  – a picket fence! If you have chickens, you know they are poor fliers, but they are awesome jumpers. I have a 5 foot compost bin that they love perching on. Actually –  anything under 4 foot and they’ll probably find a way to jump on and over.
A picket fence, however, lacks a good perching spot and they’re leery of jumping over anything if they don’t have something to grab onto. I figured a 4 foot picket fence would be the solution to my gardening woes, but I didn’t want to invest the time or the money on installing a permanent fence around the garden. I did find bundles of cheap picket-like fencing at Lowes, but it was only 2′ high. I wasn’t convinced that this would keep the girls at bay, but it was only $25 for 15′ and I figured if it didn’t work at least I hadn’t invested a lot of money into the project. To install the fence, I pounded 2′ wooden stakes into the ground around the perimeter of the garden and then secured the fence to the stakes with screws. I ended up spending a little more than $100 to surround the garden, but that was a lot cheaper than hiring someone to install a larger fence or even doing it ourselves.
It’s been 4 months now and the chickens have not attempted even once to enter the garden! Since then I’ve stained the fencing and my husband made a gate to match the picket theme. It’s not a perfect structure, but it’s an affordable solution . And I think it adds a vintage charm to a country garden…
Is a 2′ picket fence an option to enclose a chicken run? NO!
Will it protect the flock from predators? NO!
Will it work in anyone else’s garden? Who knows, but it is working in mine.
Will my hens eventually realize they can easily jump into the forbidden garden? Time will tell…

Humans responsible for demise of gigantic ancient mammals

Humans responsible for demise of gigantic ancient mammals

Early humans were the dominant cause of the extinction of a variety of species of giant beasts, new research has revealed. Scientists at the universities of Exeter and Cambridge claim […]

Animal News

Newly released footage shows a close encounter between a diver and an already famous 20-foot-long great white.
An ecological impact study on the creatures suggests reintroducing them to the mainland could make it a new apex predator above foxes and feral cats.
Some animals, a very few, recognize themselves in mirrors. Others, though, have less predictable reactions, based on type of animal. Trace explains "the mirror test" and looks at how some different creatures react.
Which came first: mountains or the creatures on them? Research on a tropical mountain paradise in Borneo helps answer that riddle.
Tadpoles from six countries, in both tropical and temperate locations, test positive for a disease-causing parasite.

Animal Pictures