We don’t just report off-beat news, breaking news and digest the best and worst of the news media analysis and commentary. We give an original take on what happened and why. We add lols, satire, news photos and original content.
HENRY Smith, a software developer, was working on a game called “Global Thermonuclear War.” He drew a scence depicting a nuclear attack on Washington. As you can see from the above image, it was a drawing full of details. The bombs is launched from somewhere in Russia.
The Guardian reports on what happened when the developer’s letting agency popped round to his flat and saw the drawing:
LET’S spare a thoght for the nine-year-old girl who lost control of her Uzi submachine gun and killed gun tutor Charles Vacca at a shooting range just south of Las Vegas. With the gun on “full-auto”, the girl fired. The recoil sent the gun over her head, shooting Vacca.
The girl was with her parents at Bullets and Burgers shooting range on vacation from New Jersey.
All right, go ahead and give me one shot,” he tells the girl, whose back is to the camera during the entire 27-second video. He then cheers when she fires one round at the target.
“All right full auto,” Vacca says. The video, which does not show the actual incident, ends with a series of shots being heard.
SMOKING is supposed to be sublime. Smokers will tell you that it is. Of course it’s bad for you.
Smoking [cigarettes] reveals the essence of appropriation–displays, in its most abstract form, the motive behind all desire to possess something, to own at all…The cigarette…allows us, in a symbolic act, to take into ourselves the world around us, the whole landscape that smoking a cigarette accompanies.” -Richard Klein
Smoking tobacco is great. The bad news is that your hobby will kill you. Smoking marks you out as a social pariah, hated even more than the fat.
ALL papers lead with news that 1,400 girls were sexually abused in Rotherham, Yorkshire. The news is full of chilling testimonies delivered by grown women. They talk of being gang raped when below the age of consent (some as youing as 11), kept compliant by drugs, gifts, drink and threats of murder against them and their families and being ferried about the country to sex parties. Some children picked up from schools.
The rapists were mostly gangs of Asian men. The victims were mostly white girls.
The police treated the victims with contempt. The council ignored the allegations.
Yesterday the leader of the council, Roger Stone, resigned his post because of what he called “historic failings”.
IN Vermont, Governor Peter Shumlin has noted the state’s heroin problem and announced plans to curb it. Will he stick all drug takers in prison? No. The dealers get nicked. But the takers get help.
“We must address it as a public health crisis,” the Governor said. “providing treatment and support rather than simply doling out punishment, claiming victory, and moving on to our next conviction.”
Under policies now in effect or soon to take hold, people caught using or in possession of heroin will be offered the chance to avoid prosecution by enrolling in treatment. Addicts, including some prisoners, will have greater access to synthetic heroin substitutes to help them reduce their dependency on illegal narcotics or kick the habit. A good Samaritan law will shield heroin users from arrest when they call an ambulance to help someone who’s overdosed. The drug naloxone, which can reverse the effects of a heroin or opioid overdose, will be carried by cops, EMTs, and state troopers. It will also be available at pharmacies without a prescription. “This is an experiment,” Shumlin says. “And we’re not going to really know the results for a while.”
IN the US, surplus military stuff ends hup in the hands of the police. And then they lose it:
“184 state and local police departments have been suspended from the Pentagon’s “1033 program” for missing weapons or failure to comply with other guidelines. We uncovered a pattern of missing M14 and M16 assault rifles across the country, as well as instances of missing .45-caliber pistols, shotguns and 2 cases of missing Humvee vehicles.”
IF you want to encounter smaller spiders in your bed then move to the country; and if you love the big ones, it’s the city for you. Wired reports:
Something about city life appears to be causing spiders to grow larger than their rural counterparts. And if that’s not enough to give you nightmares, these bigger urban spiders are also multiplying faster.
The study’s authors collected 222 of the creatures from parks and bushland throughout Sydney, and correlated their sizes to features of the built and natural landscape.
They dissected each specimen back at the lab, and determined its size, health, and fecundity by measuring four attributes: the length of the spider’s longest leg segment, the ratio of that leg segment to overall body weight, the amount of fat on the spider, and its ovary size.
To measure urbanization, the authors looked primarily at ground cover throughout the city, at several scales, where they collected each spider: Are surfaces mostly paved? Is there a lack of natural vegetation? Lawns as opposed to leaf litter?
“The landscape characteristics most associated with larger size of spiders were hard surfaces (concrete, roads etc) and lack of vegetation,” said Elizabeth Lowe, a Ph.D student studying arachnids at the University of Sydney.
A Cambodian girl offers deep-fried spiders to travelers at the town of Skun, about 80 kilometers (50 miles) northeast of the capital Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Tuesday, July 25, 2006. The town is the most well-known place for selling deep-fried spiders to travelers, who stop by on their way to and from the country’s northern and northeastern provinces. ( AP Photo/Heng Sinith)
THE ice bucket challenge works if you have ice. The rubble challenge is catching on in Gaza, where local polemicists are using it to illustrate their condition:
An appeal to garner support for Gaza which imitates the wildly popular ALS Ice Bucket Challenge but uses rubble and dirt instead of cold water is picking up steam on social media. “I have to do something and to send a message all over the world about Gaza,” said Ayman al Aloul, a journalist who started the so-called Rubble Bucket Challenge on Saturday. When the 42-year-old discussed the idea with friends, some suggested that he use either a bucket of blood or shrapnel. “It came to my mind that it’s good idea to show the whole picture – how Gaza looks now, rubble, destruction, cement with sand, small rocks,” Aloul said.
A bucket of blood? Hamas could help with that. They smashed up the water park.
The text from the video tells viewers:
Hello. I liked the idea of the ice bucket challenge so I decided to invent the Palestinian version. We looked for a bucket of water; however, the use of water is more important than to empty over our heads. And even if the water is available, it is difficult to freeze it. And when we tried to make the Palestinian version, we looked around us [and] we find the place as you see. [Destroyed buildings and piles of rubble.] Therefore, I decided to use it, instead of iced water. This challenge is not for specific people, but for all people who sympathize with the Palestinian people. We do not ask for material aid. Anybody [who] wants to help should invent his own idea. We ask for solidarity positions, especially from those who have followers and [an] audience. We need these positions. [Gets rubble dumped on head.] We do not have water, but this is what we have. Perhaps I will not find water to wash up when I return home. So if you saw me dusty in [my] next reports, try to forgive me, and try to sympathize with us.
Us? Isn’t a journalist supposed to show and not tell?
Palestinian boys play on a water slide as others have a sunbath at a swimming pool in Asdaa city, Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Monday, April 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Does that work? Do we really think there is no water in Gaza? Water is a hot topic in the region.
WILL you vote for an independent Scotland? Are you a Scots Braveheart rejecting Britain and all the fusty Middle Englanders? Are you just bored with the UK and think separation is something to do, a move that will enliven the moribund political debate?
Do you just want to declare your Scottishness?
Do you see the vote as chance for the Left to reject Tories?
And what is Scottish? The Scottish National Party keeps producing images of the past. But why would anyone vote for a retuen to a monoculture? The BBC talks about the “formula for Scottishness“. It’s not about blood and lineage, says the BBC; being Scottish is about “my accent, vocabulary and appetite for cholesterol-rich foodstuffs still mark me out as a Scot”.
Is that it? If you like deep-fired Mars bars, can understand Rab C Nesbitt without subtitles and can do an impression of Mike Myers’ Fat Bastard (the same voice he did for proud Scot Shrek), you are Scottish. Tick those boxes and you can get our own country and be ruled exclusively by others just like you. Unless the leaders do as promised an swiftly join the EU.
So. It’s not really an indepedent Scotland the YES campaigners want. It’s a bigger recognition of what Scots are.
But what is that? Or is it best defined by what it isn;’?
WORLDbytes hosted a debate about the referndum. Watch it below.
THE Philadelphia Public Record, the free weekly tabloid published by former Philadelphia City Councilman Jimmy Tayoun Sr., regrets the error. A recent report on current Philadelphia City Councilman Mark Squilla at an event in Chinatown wrongly identified his hosts as “Chinky Winky,” “Me Too,” and “Dinky Doo”.“
It was a proofreading error,” says Mr Tayoun. He says the editor used those names because he didn’t have the actual names. Althought, oddly, there were more names than people.
“That editor is a Britisher,” Tayoun added. “He didn’t mean anything by it. The Public Record is the most inclusive publication in Philadelphia.”
TO Vermont, where the Sneakers Bistro in Winooski, Vt. has been forced to remove the sign ordering ‘YIELD FOR BACON’ from a herbaceous border on Main Street. The NY Daily News says a Muslim woman complained that it was an affront to non-pork eaters.
SO. Mario Balotelli is on his way to Liverpool from AC Milan.
Italian newspaper Gazzetta says Chelsea and Arsenal both wanted the former Manchester City player, but Liverpool offered the most money.
But it was the lack of interest from other clubs, few viable alternatives and a reduced fee that turned Liverpool to the forward. After all, it was Brendan Rodgers who opined:
“I can categorically tell you Mario Balotelli will not be at Liverpool. In my last press conference I was asked a question about Mario Balotelli and I talked about what a talent he was and what an excellent player he was. And the next day it was wrote as if we were signing him. I just gave my perception of him as a player. It shouldn’t be transmitted in to us signing the player.”
LIVERPOOL Balls: In the Daily Mail, Graeme Souness features beneath the headline:
The thing I miss about being a player is the competition, standing in the tunnel eyeing each other up and down
“I can see where I went wrong. I was too hard on people. ‘‘Man-up and deal with it, look in the mirror’’ — that was the way I’d been brought up. At Liverpool, we were treated like men and expected to act like men. There was no mollycoddling.”
HAVE you noticed the rise and rise of anti-Semitism? It has become acceptable to be anti-Semitic in public. That nod and the wink around the dinner party table has now gone mainstream. The kind of anti-Semitic stuff that you can read throughout the Middle East has awakened Jew hating and Jew baiting in the UK. Sainsbury’s, The Tricycle Theatre and The Edinburgh Fringe have all censored Jews.
THIS isn’t quite the conclustion that this research comes to but it is true all the same: half of British teenagers agree that it’s entirely normal to send child porn around over mobile telephones. So, that’s half the age group that needs to be on the sex offenders’ register then, eh?
More than seven out of ten teenagers say they have watched X-rated images on line, with many saying it became common when they were 13-15 years old, while almost half (46 per cent) say “ sending sexual or naked photos or videos is part of everyday life for teenagers nowadays.”
THE man who murdered James Foley on video is British. Well, say says all the papers. How do they know this? Well, he spoke with a British accent. Don’t bother checking for yourslf, the police says anyone even looking at the Islamic State’s snuff movie “may” be arrested on a terrorism charge.
THE “Ali G” accent of the jihad Brit who cut off a US captive’s head was being studied today — as sources identified him as a Londoner called John. The hooded monster — who wields a knife in grisly internet footage — is said to be one of three UK citizens dubbed “The Beatles” by fellow fanatics in Syria and Iraq.
THERE is a reason why the police are warned about posting on social media in the UK. It’s to prevent them from looking biased and commenting on cases. But people will be people. As the BBC reports:
Hundreds of police officers have been investigated for breaching social media guidelines, research has revealed.Freedom of Information requests by the Press Association found officers made racist comments online and asked crime victims to become Facebook friends.
Of 828 cases in England and Wales from 2009 to February this year, 9% ended in resignation, dismissal or retirement.
SOLAR power can cook a bird in seconds. The vast Ivanpah plant in California’s Mojave desert uses 300,000 large mirrors to bounce sun rays to three 40-storey water towers. The resulting steam turns the turbines which create energy for 140,000 homes.