Saturday, March 5, 2011

Public shaming: taking disipline to the streets when all else fails

Evelyn Border holding a sign in front of the Bedford County courthouse in Bedford, Pa. (© Bedford County District Attorney's Office/AP)

I’d love to see this trend extend to politicians who lie, cheat, and otherwise discredit public service. I would make one a modification for their punishment; going “old school” with the stocks. Remember them?

“Time-outs, groundings and confiscated toys are so old-school.

Today's parents are getting more creative with their punishments. When their kids misbehave, some moms and dads are taking their discipline to the streets. Though public shaming of criminals has fallen out of fashion elsewhere in the world, it's still popular in the United States for misdeeds like reckless driving and shoplifting. See which kids — and a few adults — learned their lesson the public way.”

Full Story

The “Duh” for the day: car theft suspect asks officer for ride

“A car theft suspect who took off on foot in Salem was able to flag down a motorist for a ride. The only problem: the helpful driver was an undercover police officer.

The Statesman Journal reports the officer had been looking for the suspect Thursday and recognized the 31-year-old from previous contacts for other crimes.

When the suspect knocked on the window of the unmarked car and asked for a lift, he got one — straight to jail.”

Story Source      Image source

Pot dispensaries turn against L.A.'s marijuana tax proposal


Measure M on Tuesday's ballot would add a 5% marijuana tax to sales at pot dispensaries. Owners of the collectives once supported the idea but are now angry about the upcoming lottery to decide which ones can remain open.

“In Los Angeles, where voters decide Tuesday whether to create a pot tax, medical marijuana activists who once urged City Hall to tax and regulate them are hoping to defeat the proposal, angered by the council's decision to limit the number of dispensaries to 100 and choose them by lottery.”                                                 FULL STORY

Friday, March 4, 2011

Scientists: Magnetic Polar Reversal May Have Started

Changing Magnetics

Concern has been mounting for almost a decade as scientists hunched over their instruments and double-checked new data concerning the status of the Earth's crucial magnetic field.

The magnetic field protects all life from damaging solar radiation. Exposure to such radiation can cause cancer and mutate DNA. Some researchers believe evolution has been driven in part by epochs marked by a failing or weak magnetic field that allowed the surface of the world to be bathed with intense ultra-violet and other deadly forms of life-changing radiation.

Now new evidence has emerged leading some scientists to believe that the magnetic pole shift—an ongoing phenomenon that has been happening for decades—has reached a tipping point.

According to a report issued by the prestigious British Geological Survey (BGS), evidence suggests the magnetic reversal has begun.

The BGS has taken this position based on careful analysis of a region of the Earth known as the South Atlantic Anomaly (SAA). It's an area where the magnetic field is in a state of flux and has weakened noticeably. The data shows the anomaly is growing rapidly and spreading west from South Africa.

All of this indicates the Earth's liquid core is changing.

"This may be early evidence of a forthcoming reversal in the direction of the Earth’s internal magnetic field," states the article on the BGS website.


Doctor’ Seuss’s thought on Love – ‘it’s Mutual Weirdness’

dr. seuss quote about love Dr. Seuss Quote About Love


Today marks the 150th anniversary of the First National Flag of the Confederate States of America

The first national flag of the Confederate States of America, also known as the Stars & Bars (© Bob Jordan/AP)

Some argue the flag is a symbol of racism. Others say it's just Southern pride. (Which state was marred in controversy for flying the flag at its state house?)

Let’s take a look at the flag's history and its influence in pop culture. Photo of South’s first flag by Bob Jordon/AP

The Confederacy's first national flag ended its reign in May 1863, when the secession government adopted the second national flag (scroll through photos). The Stainless Banner covered the casket of a famous Civil War general

(From top) The second national flag of the Confederate States of America, also known as the Stainless Banner & the third national flag of the Confederate States of America (Photos courtesy of the Museum of the Confederacy)

The president of the Confederacy

The man who designed the flag

The flag's other name

The states that seceded from the Union

Latest about the 150th anniversary

Information via Popular Searches

I was born in Ohio, and most of my direct line fought for the North. There was one relative (who lived in Ohio) who fought for the South. That was a common theme that made the whole war even more heart-breaking. Brother against brother.

Here’s a list of inventors killed by their own inventions

This is a list of inventors whose deaths were in some manner caused by or related to a product, process, procedure, or other innovation that they invented or designed.


  • Ismail ibn Hammad al-Jawhari (died ca. 1003–1010), a Muslim Kazakh Turkic scholar from Farab, attempted to fly using two wooden wings and a rope. He leapt from the roof of a mosque in Nijabur and fell to his death.
  • Otto Lilienthal (1848–1896) died the day after crashing one of his hang gliders.
  • Franz Reichelt (1879–1912), a tailor, fell to his death off the first deck of the Eiffel Tower while testing his invention, the coat parachute. It was his first ever attempt with the parachute and he had told the authorities in advance he would test it first with a dummy.
  • Henry Smolinski (died 1973) was killed during a test flight of the AVE Mizar, a flying car based on the Ford Pinto and the sole product of the company he founded.
  • Aurel Vlaicu (1882–1913) died when his self-constructed airplane, Vlaicu II, failed him during an attempt to cross the Carpathian Mountains by air.
  • Michael Dacre (died 2009, age 53) died after testing his flying taxi device designed to accommodate fast and affordable travel among nearby cities.
  • Read More Here

PHOTO - Franz Reichelt (d. 1912) attempted to use this contraption as a parachute. Reichelt died after he jumped off the Eiffel Tower wearing his invention, which failed to operate properly as a parachute.

Combating Crime? Brain Scans Reveal the Criminal Mind

Image: brain scan

Have you ever heard the phrase, “What were they thinking?”

The latest neuroscience research is presenting intriguing evidence that the brains of certain kinds of criminals are different from those of the rest of the population.

While these findings could improve our understanding of criminal behavior, they also raise moral quandaries about whether and how society should use this knowledge to combat crime. FULL STORY

Thursday, March 3, 2011

As Union Membership Has Declined, Income Inequality Has Skyrocketed In The United States

Across the country, right-wing legislators continue their attack on labor unions, claiming that they are saving their states money.

Yet in waging these anti-labor campaigns, these politicians are ignoring one very simple fact: unions were a major force in building and sustaining the great American middle class, and as they declined, so has the middle class. As CAP’s Karla Waters and David Madland showed in a report they first published this past January, as union membership has steadily declined since 1967, so too has the middle class’s share of national income, as the super-rich have taken a larger share of national income than any time since the 1920s

This is not to say that declining union membership is the only factor that led to the growth of income inequality over the past 35 years. Yet, the correlation does show that the presence of strong labor unions tends to co-exist with a strong and vibrant middle class. That is why a Main Street Movement all over the country is fighting to protect collective bargaining and the middle class wages, benefits, and protections it promotes.

Article Source

Recycling Wonder: Buddhist Temple Made from Bottles

It’s the ultimate reclaimed glass bottle project: not a solar hot water heater, not even a house but an entire Buddhist temple.
Monks in Thailand’s Sisaket province collected over a million green Heineken bottles and brown bottles of local Chang beer to create a complex of 20 buildings including the main temple, halls, prayer rooms, water tower, sleeping quarters and even a crematorium.
Even the roofs are made from bottles. And if you’re wondering, no, the caps weren’t wasted – the monks used them to make mosaic murals.

(images via: treehugger)

Here’s a sprinkling of humor on a rainy day…


Berner’s Street Hoax was one of the greatest practical jokes of the 19th Century

The year was 1809. Famed English author, Theodore Hook, made a bet with one of his close friends that within a week he could make any house in London the most talked about place in the city!

GO HERE to read the rest of this story.

6 Nominees for the Most Disgraceful Member of Congress Announced

I'm going to go with Lawerence O'Donnell's recommendation  on nominating Sen. Tommy Tuberville as the most disgraceful member i...