Richard Branson beats Jesus in British role model poll

LONDON (Reuters Life!) – He’s a multi-millionaire maverick entrepreneur, part-time daredevil and now Britain’s Richard Branson has beaten Jesus Christ in a survey to find the top role model for children.
The Virgin Group boss has been placed second in a poll of Britons asked who their children should look up to. Jesus came in third and a family member topped the list.

Richard Branson beats Jesus in British role model poll | Lifestyle | Living | Reuters


Domestic travel ban coming and money worth less than yesterday

The United States of Prison is moving to restrict free movement. What comes next curfews? I would expect that precious metals will be outlawed before too long, they allow citizens too much control over their resources. Bush said this morning that we are not heading to a recession but are in a slow down. We are in a recession and heading toward a depression. Your money is worth less every day and the interest you collect on it doesn’t make up for the loss of buying power in the same period. Borrow and spend as much as you can but spend it on hard commodities. Certainly don’t invest in anything that is not tangible and necessary. It will cost you 1.52 dollars to buy a Euro. Gold is $971 dollars an ounce. Let’s look at the same figures in 2003 before the U.S started to print huge amounts of money to pay for the war in Iraq. In 2003 the cost of gold was about $370. A euro cost about $1.09. What this means in short hand is that the dollar you saved since 2003 will only buy about 1/3 of what it would have bought if you had spent it then. Not just in gold, but in milk, in gas, in food, in clothing, in everything. And things are not going to get any better over the next two or three years according to the forecast models that most economists are using. They say to invest in Euros, invest in gold, or invest in other strong metal backed currency. I think that’s pretty good advice. You might even want to invest in a home somewhere besides the U.S.A.

The Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is moving forward to institute a rule that would require all passengers to go through a government review process before boarding any airplane that takes off or lands anywhere with in the United States.
The U.S. government already requires international passengers to participate in the Advanced Passenger Information System, providing their full name, gender, date of birth, nationality, country of residence, and travel document type and number to the TSA before boarding. Under the proposed Secure Flight Program, this procedure would also be required on domestic flights.
Currently, individual airlines are responsible for checking the passenger manifests against the “no fly” and “enhanced screening” lists provided by the TSA. The new programs are part of a concerted effort to centralize this process, so that the TSA itself will check all supplied information against these lists, and then instruct the airline or airport staff as to how to proceed.
The Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE) has criticized the new Secure Flight rules for their secrecy and lack of accountability. The association has expressed concern that there is no clear appeals process for passengers denied boarding or continually forced to undergo enhanced security screening.
“On the surface, the new Secure Flight program no longer relies on commercial databases and appears to have reduced the number of names on the ‘No Fly’ list,” said ACTE Executive Director Susan Gurley. “It also seems that the responsibility for checking data is no longer abrogated to the airlines. While this is a step in the right direction, it prompts the industry to ask what was the origin of this new data, how is it stored, who has access to it, and how can it be corrected.”


1 in 100 Americans live in Jail

Whew! It looks like the U.S. is finally a prison state…the United States of Prison. btw…a few months ago the USA was added to the Canadian list of countries that torture…three days later after a flurry of phonecalls the U.S. was taken off the list. Now the U.S. and Canada have opted to have cross border military operations. We’re going to come put you in jail Canadians…we’re coming. First us now you.

For the first time in the nation’s history, more than one in 100 American adults is behind bars, according to a new report.
Incarceration rates are even higher for some groups. One in 36 Hispanic adults is behind bars, based on Justice Department figures for 2006. One in 15 black adults is, too, as is one in nine black men between the ages of 20 and 34.
The report, from the Pew Center on the States, also found that only one in 355 white women between the ages of 35 and 39 are behind bars but that one in 100 black women are.

cute kids other worlds

Girl Wins Planet Mnemonic Contest

A fourth-grader at Riverview Elementary School has won the National Geographic planetary mnemonic contest, developing a handy way to remember the newly assigned 11 planets, including three dwarfs.
National Geographic Children’s Books created the contest in response to the recent announcement by the scientific community that there are now 11 recognized planets — Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Ceres, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and Eris. Ceres, Pluto and Eris are considered dwarf planets.
Maryn Smith’s winning mnemonic is My Very Exciting Magic Carpet Just Sailed Under Nine Palace Elephants.

Girl Wins Planet Mnemonic Contest

Crime and Punishment

Forget Tupperware: This Party Peddles Tasers

Morning Edition, February 28, 2008 · First, there was the Tupperware party. Then came gatherings for friends and neighbors to admire and bid on gourmet cooking gear, scented candles, lingerie and now … the Taser.
That’s right: Taser International is working with independent dealers to market a version of its stun gun — in metallic pink, among other shades — to women. The weapon, priced under $400, delivers 50,000 volts of low-current electricity.
On a recent evening, in a cozy split-level home in Fairfield, Conn., a half-dozen people — mostly women — listen with interest as Dana Shafman makes her pitch.
Shafman owns an independent dealership called Shieldher Inc. in Scottsdale, Ariz., that sells Tasers to women for personal safety.
Shafman, 35, is likable in that American, go-get-’em kind of way. Standing in her red suede cowboy boots, she tells the gathering, “You have a full right to carry this,” adding, “In fact, I keep mine in my purse!”

NPR: Forget Tupperware: This Party Peddles Tasers


McCain’s Canal Zone Birth Prompts Queries About Whether That Rules Him Out

WASHINGTON — The question has nagged at the parents of Americans born outside the continental United States for generations: Dare their children aspire to grow up and become president? In the case of Senator John McCain of Arizona, the issue is becoming more than a matter of parental daydreaming.
Mr. McCain’s likely nomination as the Republican candidate for president and the happenstance of his birth in the Panama Canal Zone in 1936 are reviving a musty debate that has surfaced periodically since the founders first set quill to parchment and declared that only a “natural-born citizen” can hold the nation’s highest office.

Girl Wins Planet Mnemonic Contest

assholes big screen, little screen, ipod

2 stabbed while watching horror movie

(from SF Weekly)

An Associated Press article from today reports a stabbing incident that took place at a Fullerton movie theatre Sunday night. The movie showing was The Signal, a horror film in which people are prompted to kill by electronic devices. The significance of the plot line did not escape the crack reporters over at the AP.
“In “The Signal,” a transmission invades cell phones, radios and TVs, turning people into killers.The film was paused Sunday night while police investigated the incidents. When it was restarted…the first scene was a stabbing.”
To recap, an unarmed suspect was driven to stab fellow moviegoers by an evil presence transmitted via celluloid.The Ghosbusters failed to return repeated calls from the AP.

cute kids Oddities

Bird Boy found in Russia

A ‘bird boy’ was found in Volgograd several days ago. A 7-year old boy was taken away from his mother, 31. A woman took an interest in birds more than in her own son, that’s why he became a real Mowgli.
A boy lived with his mother in a 2-room apartment full of cages with feed and droppings. She had her own domestic birds and fed wild ones. A woman neither beat him nor left him without food. She just never talked to him. It was all the birds that communicated with the boy and taught him birds’ language.
“When you start talking to him, he chirps”, – says Galina Volskaya, a social worker of Kirovskiy region, Volgograd. A boy doesn’t understand human language at all. He just chirps and when realizing that he is not understood, starts to wave hands in the way birds winnow wings.
The boy’s mother signed an abdication from a child. A boy now lives in the asylum, but soon will be transferred to the center of psychological care. The child has a so called “Mowgli syndrome”, which in the past years has become widely spread. for example, during the last 2 months 5 children with the same symptoms were found.
In Cambodia a 27-year old wild woman was recently found. She lives in the jungles, walks nude and doesn’t understand human language. However, a local policeman acknowledged her as his daughter that got lost 18 years ago while at 8. In Africa a 10-year old boy was found among the pack of monkeys. In the USA 2 girls were brought up by a pack of monkeys. In Russia a 9-year old boy became a head of wild dogs’ tribe.

insurance nightmares

Falling icicles kill six

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Six people have been killed in three days by icicles falling from buildings in a central Russian region, ITAR-TASS news agency reported Tuesday.
Plummeting chunks of ice is an annual hazard for pedestrians in Russia during the spring when the sun finally melts thick layers of ice and snow which build up on roofs over months of freezing temperatures and darkness.

Falling icicles kill six | Oddly Enough | Reuters

assholes Food and Booze

Scientology was stolen by Hubbard

Here is the book he stole it from. Legend has it that he turned from Sci-Fi writing to fiction when he and Robert Heinlein were sitting in a bar and getting drunk, Heinlein bet him that he couldn’t found a viable religion…then L. Ron disappeared….
+ + =
(note: It is widely believed that the creation of Scientology was the result of a bar bet between L. Ron Hubbard and Robert A. Heinlein. According to Scientology critic Lindsay[Lindsay] this is “definitely not true”, no such bet was ever made, it would have been “uncharacteristic of Heinlein” to make such a bet, and “there’s no supporting evidence” unless you consider several of Heinlein’s autobiographical pieces and biographical pieces written by his wife, which makes this claim repeatedly.)