Dave Stancliff 2013-09-08 blogarama.com

Saturday, September 14, 2013

A Case of Deadly Boredom: ‘Pick ‘em out, knock ‘em out’

         Good Day World!

 Unfortunately, every day I see, or hear, a reminder of how violent our society is. It’s unavoidable. It’s our 21st century reality.

Nevertheless, I’m still shocked at the recent trend of boredom killings. I saw the story below yesterday, and I’m still shaking my head today.

Killing because one is bored, is a stark reflection of how our young people perceive this violent world. It’s become a modern phenomenon that isn’t going away.

Each story seems more horrific than the last one. Innocent people are being singled out at random and murdered for entertainment. The movies and TV just aren’t violent enough anymore. The next step was sadly inevitable:

Reality TV, and violent Internet postings. Filming people being beaten too death and putting it out on the internet has become too commonplace. The final frontier has been reached…where does it go from here?

 A 19-year-old man was sentenced to 30 years in prison Thursday for the beating death of a 62-year-old Chicago man that was recorded on a cell phone and uploaded to Facebook. Anthony Malcolm was convicted of first-degree murder and robbery for his role in the attack that killed 62-year-old Delfino Mora.

According to prosecutors, Malcolm and two other co-defendants last July decided to play a game they called “Pick ‘em out, knock ‘em out.” The three targeted Mora who was in an alley in the West Rogers Park neighborhood collecting cans to sell for cash. Full story & video here

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Friday, September 13, 2013

Friday the 13th: Three stories where people got really lucky!

      Good Day World!

On this Friday the 13th, I thought it would be fun to point out some people’s recent good fortunes.

I grew up with the notion that if you see a good deal…jump on it!

I’m certainly not the only person that goes by that notion. Most of us are struggling from payday to payday, and it seems like we never get a break.

When we do, it’s far and few. But sometime the planets align just right, and a dream deal presents itself! It can happen. 

Here’s three very recent examples of getting great deals at the expense of some corporations:

For a little while on Thursday, United Airlines was giving away airplane tickets for free, or close to it. Passengers reported buying tickets for $5 to $10. United says it accidentally filed fares for $0, although airport charges might have resulted in a small cost.

United stopped taking bookings through its website and phone centers to prevent more of the tickets from being sold or given away. The website was accepting reservations again around 2:45 p.m. Central time.

United spokeswoman Megan McCarthy says the mistake was due to an error in filing the fares, not a problem with the website. The airline doesn't yet know how many tickets were sold at the unusually low prices. Read the whole story here

I thought that was pretty cool. Tech types who like to get a real steal will enjoy this next story; imagine…an Apple TV for $50! Here’s the skinny:

Best Buy released a too good to be true coupon yesterday: It was - Spend a $100 and save $50 automatically when you pay with a MasterCard credit card. The fine print had excluded a few products but it was pretty much a free $50 bucks for everything else.

So predictably people took advantage of ol' Best Buy and rung up thousands of dollars of Amazon.com and iTunes gift cards for half off, Apple TVs for $50, Kindle Paperwhites for cheap and anything they could find without any limits. Read the whole story here.

Hey! Power to the people right! I mean, what are you going do? When a corporation makes a slip like that it’s barely a blip on their financial radar. Their profit margins are already obscene, a little karma won’t hurt them. This last story is a jewel!

Macy's most recent catalog contained a pretty jaw-dropping deal: a diamond necklace with an original price of $1500 was advertised on sale for $47.

The only problem? The sale price was a typo. The necklace was supposed to be $479 on sale. Some poor copy-editor is probably getting fired as we speak.

A number of customers were able to buy the necklace at the $47 price (Macy's eventually cottoned on to the mistake and posted signs at its jewelry counters apologizing for the error and listing the correct price). Read the whole story here

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Thursday is about works of art: Light and Shadows are Hot!

Rashad Alakbarov Paints with Shadows and Light lighting light installation color

  Good Day World!

I’m feeling a little artsy this morning so I went in search of something unusual from the art world.

 I found it, although from what I read it’s becoming a common artistic ploy: light and shadows creating scenes of beauty.

 This is kind of flying all over the internet right now, but I couldn’t resist sharing.

 Artist Rashad Alakbarov from Azerbaijan uses suspended translucent objects and other found materials to create light and shadow paintings on walls.

The jaw-dropping light painting (left), made with an array of colored airplanes is currently on view at the Fly to Baku exhibition at De Pury Gallery in London through January 29th. (via art wednesday, fasels suppe)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Do men with smaller sacs make better fathers?

      Good Day World!

If you’re a regular reader you know how skeptical I am of surveys, but I still run stories on their results. Why?

They’re usually entertaining – kind of like a daily horoscope. Most (99%) are questionable no matter who does them on what subject.

So-called experts give some more weight than others. I often wonder why millions are spent on dubious research - from the sex-life of snails to men with small balls making better dads?

Yes, I said small balls. Nuts. Cojones. Testicles. Gonads. Man sacks.

Some university scientists in the following article seem pretty sure that if men had smaller sacs they’d be more nurturing fathers.

I won’t even go there when it comes to my “special purpose boys” other than to say those scientists are leaping to some faulty conclusions!

Take a look… at this story. See what you think:

Aw, Nuts! Nurturing Dads Have Smaller Testicles, Study Shows

Do men with small balls make good fathers? That may sound ridiculous, but Emory University scientists have found that men who tend to enjoy being a nurturing parent also tend to have smaller testicles.

Over the past decade, science has found that men across cultures undergo a transformation if they become nurturing fathers. Attentive fathers in the Philippines, Africa, Europe and North America all show significant drops in testosterone levels. Read the full story here

Time for me to walk on down the road…

 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The world’s safe now: SWAT team kills 107 year-old man barricaded in room!

        Good Day World!

I’ve read and heard many stories about police killing elderly people in shootouts. Happens all the time in our gun-loving culture. Despite that, I came across a story that should never have happened.

The reason I’m sharing it with you is because I have an opinion about the story, which I’ll give after you check it out.

The 80-year-old Arkansas woman who called the police on her 107-year-old roommate says officers had no choice but to shoot and kill him. Pauline Lewis told Little Rock station THV 11 Monday that she invited Monroe Isadore to move in with her last month — but he went ballistic when she suggested he find a new apartment on Saturday night.

A SWAT team pumped tear gas into the room and he started firing at them through a window, police said. They fired back and he was killed. The incident is under investigation, but Lewis said police were not out of line. Full story here

The hell they weren’t! You can’t tell me that the SWAT team wasn’t out-of-line this time! They could easily outwaited the old guy – for cripes sake he was 107 years-old and would have fallen asleep eventually!

But no. Like a group of Rambo robots, they had to create a situation by pumping tear gas into the room he was barricaded in. What did they suppose he’d do? He panicked and fired his gun. Even then however, they could have backed off a safe distance and attempted to negotiate with him. If that didn’t work they had other options.

Common sense would tell anyone that a 107 year-old man is not going to charge out of a barricaded room and threaten anyone. By prodding Monroe Isadore with the tear gas attack the SWAT team showed an appalling lack of common sense.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Monday, September 9, 2013

Blind Justice? Weapon permits are granted to the blind in Iowa

     Good Day World!

When people talk about guns these days it’s either you’re for them or against them. For the majority there is no middle ground.

I take a minority opinion which is actually a middle ground. I don’t want to infringe on our right as Americans to own a gun, but I want some common sense changes made in some gun laws.

I would like to see certain laws passed – call it gun control if you want a buzz word – that would make it harder for criminals to get them…and some other’s like the insane or if you’re in Iowa, the blind!

Yes, I said blind. Throw this fact into the gun control debate: officials in Iowa say they have been granting weapons permits to blind people! Just exactly how many blind Iowans have permits to carry guns is unclear. State officials say they do not collect that information when the permits are issued.

Say what? It’s perfectly legal to own a gun even if your blind? “It seems a little strange, but the way the law reads, we can’t deny them (a permit),” Sgt. Jana Abens, a spokeswoman for the Polk County sheriff’s office, told the Des Moines Register recently.

Private gun ownership — even hunting — by visually impaired Iowans is nothing new. But the practice of visually impaired residents legally carrying firearms in public became widely possible thanks to gun permit changes that took effect in Iowa in 2011.

Now here’s some to consider on a much larger scale: the Gun Control Act of 1968 and other federal laws do not prohibit blind people from owning guns. But unlike Iowa, some states have laws that spell out whether visually impaired people can obtain weapon permits.

Talk about scary. Iowa is now officially off my American vacation list!

Here’s the thing, I know someone who is visually impaired (he’s blind okay?) who is a sketchy type of fellow. I can see him shooting at a looming blur believing it to be a threat! Especially if he was packing a gun while out and about.

Call me overly cautious, but I would rather not have armed blind people walking – with their white canes of course - around shooting at threatening sounds, voices, etc. Does that make me anti-gun?

Hell no! I never said that. I would just like to see more common sense used in many current gun laws. Like the two I just mentioned.

Time for me to walk on down the road….

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Sunday morning meanderings …it’s a busy world

094

     Good Day World!

It’s been a week since we moved into our new house and Shirley and I are loving it!

Looking and listening to the current news today several stories seem to stand out:

Tokyo 2020 Olympics could be shot in the arm for struggling Japan

There were scenes of jubilation in Japan early Sunday after Tokyo was named host city of the 2020 Olympic Games – a shot in the arm for a country battered by decades of economic stagnation and the 2011 tsunami.There was an outpouring of pride and joy at the International Olympic Committee announcement – but also surprise among many Japanese who had feared the country’s post-tsunami nuclear crisis had scuppered the city’s bid. Read full story here

Dogs help stressed U.S. military veterans cope with civilian life

A U.S. Veterans Affairs report reveals that of about 830,000 veterans treated at VA medical centers over the last decade, 29 percent had a diagnosis of PTSD, and 22 percent were suffering from depression.

K9s for Warriors offers veterans a three-week in-house program to meet and learn how to work with their dogs.The dogs are not as highly trained as seeing-eye dogs for the blind, said Duval, but they do have special skills.

They are able to provide assistance - like fetching objects for soldiers with physical disabilities. They are also trained to create personal space for veterans whose condition may make them nervous in a crowd. A dog is taught to "cover and block" - to stand between a vet and an approaching person, or behind a vet when he or she is standing in line, Duval explained. Read full story here

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Just how powerful is twitter in the political arena?

Q&A: How To Do Political Coverage Better In The Twitter Age

In a 95-page paper written at the conclusion of his spring fellowship at Harvard's Shorenstein Center, CNN's Peter Hamby explores the complaint political practitioners and the people who follow them have made for ages: Campaign coverage is shallow, solipsistic and possibly doing a disservice to voters tasked with making serious decisions for our democracy.

Hamby concludes that Twitter — and insta-sharing platforms like it — offer voters abundantly more choices for getting their information, but that the information often lacks a critical element: context.

Time for me to walk on down the road…