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11 killed, nine churches torched in Nigeria
Today's Headlines
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-Short Attention Span Theater-
Reason 2439 for Cleaning Your Room
After hearing of a newspaper account of an unclaimed $853,492 Powerball ticket from October, Steve Jones decided to do a little housecleaning. Of the three tickets he swept out from under the bed, one wound up being the prizewinner.

On Thursday, Jones took the ticket to the Louisiana Lottery Corp.'s headquarters in Baton Rouge and walked out with $597,447 after taxes. "Someone had mentioned to me there was a story in the paper about the missing ticket," Jones said. "I buy them all the time, and after he told me that, I went into the room I sleep in and started looking. I grabbed me a mop and went up under the bed and found three of them."

Jones took the tickets to a liquor store where he buys many of his lottery tickets, and a store clerk scanned them. "The first two were nothing, but the third ticket said I needed to go the lottery office," said Jones. "I didn't know whether it was the Match-5 winnings or something else. But when they said I had to drive to Baton Rouge, I started looking for someone to drive me."

The retailer who sold the Match-5 Bonus ticket got $8,534. Match-5 Bonus, pays a bonus to players who match the five white ball numbers but do not correctly match the red Powerball number when a record Powerball jackpot is surpassed. Jones' ticket was to expire April 17. Winners of the lottery's draw games, such as Powerball, have 180 days after the drawing to claim their prize.
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 16:16 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [258 views] Top|| File under:

The mama of all bunnies
another cool animal discovery story
The fossilised skeleton of a rabbit-like creature that lived 55 million years ago has been found in Mongolia, Science magazine reports. Gomphos elkema, as it is known, is the oldest member of the rabbit family ever to be found. Gomphos was surprisingly similar to modern rabbits - and probably hopped around on its elongated hindlimbs.

The fossil adds weight to the idea that rabbit-like creatures first evolved no earlier than 65 million years ago. "This skeleton is very complete," co-author Robert Asher, of Humboldt Universität, Berlin, Germany, told the BBC News website. "Gomphos gives us valuable information about the anatomy of early rabbits - it tells us what they looked like.

"Gomphos had a true 'rabbit's foot'; that is, a foot more than twice as long as the hand that could be used for hopping."

But the ancient creature did have some traits that were unlike its modern relative. For example, Gomphos had quite a big tail and some of its teeth were more squirrel-like than rabbit-like.

Prior to this discovery, the oldest, most complete fossil lagomorphs (the family which includes rabbits, pikas and hares) were about 35 million years old. Scanty fossil evidence has led to some uncertainty about when modern placental mammals first appeared in evolutionary time.

One camp believes that modern placental mammals (which include elephants, bats, rabbits, lions etc, but not kangaroos, opossums or echidnas) existed long before the famed "KT" boundary 65 million years ago, which marked the demise of the dinosaurs. The other camp disagrees with this view, and instead claims that modern placentals did not originate until close to, or shortly after, this event. Gomphos has waded - or hopped - into the debate, adding evidence to the latter theory.

Hitherto, there was a strong school of thought that suggested lagomorphs are more closely related to an extinct group of Cretaceous animals called the "zalambdalestids", than they are to other, modern mammal groups. Zalambdalestids lived before the great mass extinction event 65 million years ago. So, if they were close relatives of the lagomorphs, it would suggest modern placental groups were diverging during the Cretaceous period.

But an analysis of Gomphos suggests this is not the case, Dr Asher and his colleagues believe. This makes it more likely that modern lagomorphs - and other placental mammals - originated after the dinosaurs went extinct. "This skeleton gives us more data to throw into the analysis," he told the BBC News website. "And using this new information we favour the second idea."
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 14:14 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [248 views] Top|| File under:

#1  This is frightening.
Posted by: Jimmy Carter || 02/25/2006 15:22 Comments || Top||

#2  Looks more like Jack the Rat.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 02/25/2006 15:28 Comments || Top||

#3  just a Jackelope that's shed it's horns....they grow back yearly. Everyone knows that
Posted by: Frank G || 02/25/2006 15:55 Comments || Top||

That thing would have chewed Jimmuhs boat in half.

Posted by: RD || 02/25/2006 16:58 Comments || Top||

#5  "Attention! Attention! Ladies and gentlemen, attention! There is a herd of killer rabbits headed this way and we desperately need your help!"

--Night of the lepus (1972)
Posted by: Mike || 02/25/2006 20:13 Comments || Top||

'Jurassic beaver' found in China
this is cool ...

The discovery of a fossil beaver that lived when the dinosaurs ruled the Earth could challenge some currently accepted ideas on mammal evolution. Castorocauda lutrasimilis , which was unearthed in China, is a species previously unknown to science. It dates back to 164 million years ago, a time when mammals were thought to be primitive creatures confined to land. But this animal was adapted to life in water, meaning scientists may now have to rethink their theories.

The fossil was found in the Middle Jurassic Jiulongshan Formation, a deposit rich in the remains of dinosaurs, early insects and other organisms. Like modern beavers, the creature had fur, a broad scaly tail, and webbed feet for swimming. It was about the size of a small female platypus and had seal-like teeth for eating fish.

Such advanced features have surprised many scientists, suggesting mammals that lived during the hey-day of the dinosaurs had already conquered a variety of environments. The mammals of the time were once thought to be largely primitive shrew-like creatures, scuttling at the feet of dinosaurs, and only flourishing when the dinosaurs died out some 65 million years ago.

Commenting on the find, revealed in the journal Science, Thomas Martin of the Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg in Frankfurt, Germany, said it showed mammals had conquered the water 100 million years earlier than previously thought. "This exciting fossil is a further jigsaw-puzzle piece in a series of recent discoveries, demonstrating that the diversity and early evolutionary history of mammals were much more complex than perceived less than a decade ago," he wrote.
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 14:05 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [250 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Whew, Thank Goodness!! Scanning that header gave me a momentary pulse quickening!
Posted by: smn || 02/25/2006 15:36 Comments || Top||

#2  I thought a fossilized beaver was ummmmm, well..... oh, nevermind.
Posted by: Doc8404 || 02/25/2006 15:37 Comments || Top||

#3  I'm glad you all said it first. Now I don't feel like the only dirty minded juvenile bastard in here ;)
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 02/25/2006 15:42 Comments || Top||

#4  Your double entendre for the day, brought to you by your friendly RB moderators. ;-)
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 15:56 Comments || Top||

#5  "Nice Beaver"
"Thanks. I just had it stuffed"
Posted by: Lt. Frank G Drebbin || 02/25/2006 15:58 Comments || Top||

Castorocauda lutrasimilis,

An oily, brown, odorous substance obtained from glands in the groin of the beaver and used as a perfume fixative.

A tail or taillike structure, or a tapering or elongated extremity of an organ or other part.


Main Entry: si·mi·lis si·mi·li gau·det
Pronunciation: 'si-mi-lis-'si-mi-lE-'gau-"det
Usage: foreign term
Etymology: Latin
: like takes pleasure in like


Beaver similis

Posted by: RD || 02/25/2006 17:14 Comments || Top||

Who says TN is backward? or This Buds for you.
Posted by: BrerRabbit || 02/25/2006 07:45 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [252 views] Top|| File under:

#1  How much ism admission to this theme park?
Posted by: HalfEmpty || 02/25/2006 11:53 Comments || Top||

#2  it's always the power bill for the gro-lites that gives em away
Posted by: Frank G || 02/25/2006 12:43 Comments || Top||

#3  yup the electricty bill is a killer :)
Posted by: djohn66 || 02/25/2006 13:09 Comments || Top||

#4  Was it the electricty bill?

Posted by: 3dc || 02/25/2006 13:13 Comments || Top||

#5  They didn't have a water turbine or generator?
Posted by: 3dc || 02/25/2006 13:13 Comments || Top||

#6  Solar panels?
Posted by: too true || 02/25/2006 13:15 Comments || Top||

#7  This is one thing I DO agree with WFB on. We're wasting far too much time and energy fighting this drug business. Legalize it, tax it, make laws stating that discriminating against users is perfectly legal, slam anyone operating under the influence in jail forever, and count the money we save. It's a losing battle that we don't need to fight. The idiots who are smoking this stuff now probably won't smoke any more of it if it's legal and those who want to be a part of productive society will avoid it anyway. Legalize it and get on with dealing with much bigger problems.
Posted by: mac || 02/25/2006 14:15 Comments || Top||

#8  Gotta admire their spirit.
Posted by: 2b || 02/25/2006 14:27 Comments || Top||

#9  mac, unfortunately you're 100% correct.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 02/25/2006 14:27 Comments || Top||

#10  I hate drugs and think pot heads are pussies but I agree w/you Mac. Legalize, regulate, and tax it accordingly. I had a buddy who ran a similar though albeit smaller operation on the west side of Detroit. He had a fake wall in his garage w/black lights on timers and everything. The fake wall & ceiling was covered in tin foil - go figure. Anyways he was the most paranoid dude you'd ever wanna meet. One because he had enough cannabis to put himself away for 30+ years and two because he was always smoking his own shit. He claimed he was addicted to pot though most cannabis advocates I've met say it is not habit forming. Either way, I could give a rat's *ss because as I said, I think it's a lame waste of time - though it doesn't concern me if some numb nut wants to get high in their own house as long as they don't operate a vehicle or distribute to minors.
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 02/25/2006 15:40 Comments || Top||

#11  Off season duck blinds, that's all I'ma saying.
Posted by: 6 || 02/25/2006 16:28 Comments || Top||

#12  No one can deny marijuana is a drug, but there are much worse drugs, like alcohol. The government should legalize grass, and start spending money on discouraging drugs that actually completely ruin people's lives= crack and crystal meth. Pot maybe be a gateway drug, but the current methods of fighting drugs are obviously not working.
Posted by: bgrebel || 02/25/2006 20:50 Comments || Top||

Major Beer Heist
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [290 views] Top|| File under:

#1  beats the crap outta the £40 mill robbery over here in old blightey , hands down imho :)
Posted by: MacNails || 02/25/2006 2:49 Comments || Top||

#2  It's only Miller beer; they're doing humanity a huge favor here...
Posted by: Raj || 02/25/2006 13:58 Comments || Top||

#3  nice frothy ...mugs
Posted by: Frank G || 02/25/2006 14:36 Comments || Top||

#4  Purdy teeths.
Posted by: 6 || 02/25/2006 16:29 Comments || Top||

#5  and taped up like she could go a few rounds with Bobby Brown - bet she could take a punch better than Whitney as well....
Posted by: Frank G || 02/25/2006 17:40 Comments || Top||

#6  what a babe!
Posted by: Frank G || 02/25/2006 17:54 Comments || Top||

Four charged in human tissue theft
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [253 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Human Tissue eh? does it come on a roll in packs of eight?
Posted by: ShepUK || 02/25/2006 4:32 Comments || Top||

Swedish Hells Angels Claim Sick Benefits for Depression
They might not look like sensitive sorts, but seven out of ten Hell’s Angels in Stockholm are on sick benefits with depression, Stockholm’s police commissioner Carin Götblad told the press on Monday.
"Øh, Spike! I'm sø depressed!"
"Me, tøø, Butch!"
Now the doctor who signed most of the men’s sick notes could be struck off the medical register.
"Right. Thøse guys're depressed."
"Ja, sure! They løøked depressed to me!"
Doctor Roman Nowik is at the centre of an enquiry announced on Monday into members of the biker gang, which has about 30 members in Stockholm. It is believed that many of those on benefits were working at the same time. Police and officials at the Swedish social insurance administration (Försäkringskassan) say they plan to work together more closely to find proof that the bikers were cheating the system.
"Yøuse gøt nuttin' on us, cøppers! Nuttin'!"
Nowik told Dagens Nyheter on Wednesday that the Hell’s Angels members he had seen were not faking. “They are depressed – in many cases suicidal – and have not tricked me. I am an expert on depression,” he told the paper.
"Ånd whåt måkes yøu ån expert?"
"Dø I løøk håppy?"
But a report in December from the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen) said that Nowik had often failed to provide medical evidence when signing sick notes. Meanwhile, officials at the insurance administration have said that announcing the investigation into the Hell’s Angels publicly will make the probe more difficult.
"They're øn tø us, Butch!"
"Ååårrr! We gøttå gø tø grøund, Spike!"
Christoffer Franzén at Försäkringskassan said the public announcement was “unfortunate”.
"Ja, sure! Very unførtunåte!"
Dagens Nyheter reported that many police were upset that a previously secret investigation had been put into the public domain. But Inspector Christer Nilsson said that the police had “made the operative decision that it was not wrong,” to announce that the Hell’s Angels were being investigated.
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [273 views] Top|| File under:

#1  LOL! Depression is prolly the easiest scam these guys ever pulled. Ja, sure, prove I ain't depressed, lol, er, I mean *sniff*... Just think of gang rapes as "group".

The more stories I read about Scandinavia, the more apparent it becomes that they're evolving into pluperfect morons. A whole new level of suckers and zoomers. The socialist tag is just cover.
Posted by: .com || 02/25/2006 4:06 Comments || Top||

#2  i can't imagine swedish hells angels, something just dosnt sound right....
Posted by: ShepUK || 02/25/2006 4:46 Comments || Top||

#3  Well, there were the berserkers among the Vikings. 'course that was a while back .... ;-)
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 6:40 Comments || Top||

#4  Nur dee nur dee knee knicky nur
nur dee dee dee dit belt belt belt belt
Posted by: HalfEmpty || 02/25/2006 11:57 Comments || Top||

#5  Nordic bikers are actually a staple of local organized crime, from what I understand, they're not a quaint odditiy.
In the mid 90's, they used rocket launchers and explosives to blow up each others HQ and nightclubs.

Still, I agree, Bandidos, Hell's, Rock Machines and the like are usually associated with the never-ending highways of the USA, not with the old continent's small roads.
Same "clubs" in Europe, btw, there are some RM in the south of France I think, and one famous 80-90's skinhead, Serge Ayoub/"Batskin" is now a parisian Hell's, and was convicted for traffiking metamphetamine a few years ago, he's out by now I believe.

IIRC, nordic bikers don't ride bikes that much, climate is too cold. Bikeless bikers, ha.
Posted by: anonymous5089 || 02/25/2006 15:52 Comments || Top||

#6  bikers here in US traffic meth and heroin as well.
Posted by: 2b || 02/25/2006 15:55 Comments || Top||

#7  small potatos compared to the Mexican traffickers
Posted by: Frank G || 02/25/2006 16:04 Comments || Top||

#8  Wait a second.... what ever happened to the Bandidos Copenhagen? It was a RB staple for awhile.
Posted by: 6 || 02/25/2006 16:30 Comments || Top||

Drought deepens in Britain
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [258 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Im thirsty , all this rain in the north !! alas but its all undrinkable , i personally blame the j0000's , zionist , and anyone including the water companies for not being Islamic enough ..

Allah Ak' bah !

Posted by: MacNails || 02/25/2006 2:23 Comments || Top||

#2  We need it to SEETHE , not RAIN ... sheesh !
Posted by: MacNails || 02/25/2006 2:39 Comments || Top||

#3  bah theres no shortage
27 years now i've been hearing this and never ever have i had to go short of water! pure BS i think
Posted by: ShepUK || 02/25/2006 4:30 Comments || Top||

#4  Shep, I've read accounts (which I can't find right now, sorry) that some British farmers are in trouble with their crops / pastures. Is that your understanding too?
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 6:39 Comments || Top||

#5  From what I understand, a large part of Britain's water supply problem would evaporate were they to repair leaky supply pipes. But water is so inexpensive there, nobody wants to bother.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/25/2006 7:38 Comments || Top||

#6  correct tw .. great bit of british short sighted 'ness !
Posted by: MacNails || 02/25/2006 9:13 Comments || Top||

#7  Interesting - thanks!

That reality notwithstanding, is this story being used as part of the Global Warming Warning™ push?
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 10:14 Comments || Top||

#8  There's two kinds of droughts from my experience in Caliphornia. The first is the kind that nature creates. It results in farmers no longer being able to grow cotton in the desert. The second is man made. It results in "If it's brown flush it down, if it's yellow let it mellow."
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 02/25/2006 10:33 Comments || Top||

#9  I've got a couple of Austrailian Caroma toilets at home, NS. There are two buttons on top: the half flush gives a chaser, and the full flush gives a woosher. That cuts down water use greatly and appropriately.

It is true that many cities, especially older ones have a high percentage of their water wasted because of old water mains. That sould be addressed, but like in NYC, we are talking about extremely expensive and extremely disruptive.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 02/25/2006 12:57 Comments || Top||

#10  TW,

I spent a month in London in Sept/Oct. Walked by a broken water pipe near a tree on Bayswater Road across from Hyde Park on the first day I was there. It was gushing at least 5 gal/min. I have no idea how long it had been broken before I saw it but it wasn't fixed until the day before we left. As this example shows, the British simply aren't careful with water. Maybe a serious drought will convince them they need to be a bit less profligate.
Posted by: mac || 02/25/2006 12:58 Comments || Top||

#11  What percentage of water is for residential use in the UK? I'll bet it's under 10%. In Arizona, it's 60+% farming, 30+% mining and industry, and 7-8% residential.

All the low-water toilets in the world won't compensate for the usage by farming and industry, but that's where the regulators start first.
Posted by: Jackal || 02/25/2006 15:27 Comments || Top||

#12  True, Jackal. One thing about more energy and conservation: most govt and enviros go for the headlines and buzzwords, and do not list the energy sinks, from biggest to smallest, and prioritize conservation measures, based upon the best return for the effort. We are on a well here, so less water use means less electricity. I used to pack water where I lived up north, so I religiously do not believe in wasting it in my life.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 02/25/2006 15:34 Comments || Top||

Cases of crippling fever found in mainland France
Doctors in mainland France have detected a mosquito-borne disease among people returning from the Indian Ocean region, where the virus is spreading rapidly, a senior health official said on Saturday.

France's health minister has blamed "Chikungunya" fever, for which there is no known cure or vaccine, for directly or indirectly killing 77 people on the French island of La Reunion off the southeast coast of Africa.

French health officials say 157,000 people have now been infected by the disease on La Reunion, about one in five of the population.

"We have people returning from La Reunion who have symptoms of chikungunya and their diagnoses have been confirmed," Francois Bricaire, head of the infectious diseases service at Pitie-Salpetriere hospital in Paris, told Europe 1 radio.

"It's not surprising, quite simply because of the contacts between the island of La Reunion and mainland France."

He said about 30 cases had been found by his service and it was likely that other medical services had detected cases. The disease can only spread via mosquitoes and Bricaire did not say whether the people with symptoms were confined or allowed home.

Health Minister Xavier Bertrand told Europe 1 that the mosquito which carries the virus could be present in southeastern France but gave no details.

The illness, which has also been found in the nearby Indian Ocean islands of the Seychelles and Mauritius, is marked by high fever and severe rashes. Most people recover although it is extremely painful.

The number of people infected in Mauritius has risen to 962 from 341 the previous week, the Mauritius government said.

French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin is due to travel to La Reunion on Sunday. He faces growing criticism over the failure to prevent the disease spreading and said this week that the entire island should be cleared of mosquitoes.

The spread of chikungunya is likely to increase health concerns in France following confirmation of the presence of the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu at a farm in the east of the country where thousands of turkeys died.

First recognized in East Africa in 1952, chikungunya leaves the immune system weak, proving opportunities for other diseases to set in. The name comes from the Swahili for stooped walk, referring to the posture of those afflicted.

La Reunion is a popular tourist destination for European travelers. The Reunion Committee on Tourism has reported tour cancellations but has not provided figures for costs incurred.

Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 14:16 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [245 views] Top|| File under:

'No chance' for EU constitution in Poland, Kaczynski says
Polish president Lech Kaczynski has said the EU constitution has "no chance" of being ratified in Poland, while pleading for a new, less centralist kind of charter. The Polish leader made his remarks in an interview with French daily Le Figaro on Friday (24 February), ahead of a two-day visit to France on Friday and Saturday. "This treaty has practically no chance of being ratified in Poland, neither by referendum, nor via the parliamentary route," he was quoted as saying.

Mr Kaczynski's interview reiterated earlier calls for a new EU charter, looser and more decentralised than the EU constitution rejected by French and Dutch voters last year. The Polish leader told Le Figaro "In any case, it should take reality into account, that is to say the differences between the members of the union as far as the levels of development are concerned as well as traditions and expectations."

Underlining the central role of nation states in his thinking, he said "what interests the Poles is what will come out of Poland, not the future of the union as a whole. It's the same in France." "What interests people is what Jacques Chirac says, not the declarations of Mr Barroso," he said mockingly.

On Wednesday he had stated that the current EU constitution text "brings us closer to a super-state," according to PAP.

The trip to Paris constitutes Mr Kaczynski’s first visit to a capital in "old" Europe, before a trip to Germany planned in March. Le Monde writes that Mr Kaczynski's choice of Paris shows a warming-up in Franco-Polish relations which suffered during Poland’s support for the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Mr Chirac famously said in 2003 after Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic backed the US position "They missed a good opportunity to shut up," adding "These countries have been not very well behaved and rather reckless of the danger of aligning themselves too rapidly with the American position."

Poland has not forgotten Mr Chirac’s "unfortunate" remarks, Mr Kaczynski indicated. He told Le Figaro "to me, that way of thinking of the type 'we welcome you in the European Union, but you have to abide', that doesn't make sense."
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/25/2006 11:10 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [249 views] Top|| File under:

#1  It's cold, aged and it's yummy.
Posted by: 6 || 02/25/2006 12:05 Comments || Top||

#2  In other news, Francisco Franco is still dead.
Posted by: Matt || 02/25/2006 13:25 Comments || Top||

#3  God Bless the Poles.

Posted by: Danking70 || 02/25/2006 13:40 Comments || Top||

#4  Go get 'em, Lech. Slap that bitch sideways.
Posted by: mojo || 02/25/2006 14:34 Comments || Top||

UN court rejects Milosevic's bid for provisional release
AMSTERDAM: The UN war crimes tribunal in The Hague rejected Slobodan Milosevic's request for provisional release from detention in the Netherlands to travel to Russia for medical treatment, the court said on Friday. "The request is denied," the court said in a written decision. "The trial chamber is not satisfied... that the accused, if released, would return for the continuation of the trial." But the court said doctors treating Milosevic for a heart condition and high blood pressure could look after the former Serb president in the Netherlands, where he is on trial for crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes.
Posted by: Fred || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [229 views] Top|| File under:

France confirms EU's first bird flu case
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [246 views] Top|| File under:

Great White North
University bans Wi-Fi because of health danger of radio waves

A small Canadian university has ruled out campus-wide wireless internet access because its president fears the system's electromagnetic forces could pose a risk to students' health.

Lakehead University, in Thunder Bay, Ontario, has only a limited Wi-Fi connections at present, in places where there is no fibre-optic internet connection. According to president Fred Gilbert, that is just fine. "The jury is still out on the impact that electromagnetic forces have on human physiology," Mr Gilbert told a university meeting last month, insisting that university policy would not change while he remained president. "Some studies have indicated that there are links to carcinogenetic occurrences in animals, including humans, that are related to energy fields associated with wireless hotspots, whether those hotspots are transmissions lines, whether they're outlets, plasma screens, or microwave ovens that leak."

Lakehead University published a transcript of Mr Gilbert's remarks on its website. Spokeswoman Eleanor Abaya said the decision not to expand the university's few isolated wireless networks was a "personal decision" by Mr Gilbert.
He didn't want to spring for a free tinfoil hat for everyone. And underwear.

But the president's stance has prompted a backlash from students and from Canadian health authorities, who say his fears are overdone. "If you look at the body of science, we're confident that there is no demonstrable health effect or effects from wireless technology," said Robert Bradley, director of consumer and clinical radiation protection at Canada's federal health department. He said there was no reason to believe that properly installed wireless networks pose a health hazard to computer users.

Adam Krupper, president of the Lakehead students' union, estimated about 1000 of the school's 7500 students have laptops that could pick up a wireless signal, and he said students "really, really" want Wi-Fi on campus. "Considering this is a university known for its great use of technology, it's kind of bad that we can't get Wi-Fi," he said.

Mr Gilbert is a former vice-provost of Colorado State University who holds degrees in biology and zoology. He was previously a zoology professor.
I could understand an English major, but a zoology professor?
Posted by: Jackal || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [323 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Some studies have indicated that there are links to carcinogenetic occurrences in animals

That's why he's going apesh*t
Posted by: Shiter Omeatch9655 || 02/25/2006 0:25 Comments || Top||

#2  "have indicated"


Call me when you get some actual facts
Posted by: Barbara Skolaut || 02/25/2006 0:46 Comments || Top||

#3  What a maroon. From the Ward Churchill CU Zoo University of drooling idiots.
Posted by: Inspector Clueso || 02/25/2006 1:06 Comments || Top||

#4  this chumps just shortened his career dramaticly me thinks
Posted by: ShepUK || 02/25/2006 4:28 Comments || Top||

#5  Just like all that cell phone brain cancer that is now in epidemic levels! Killing all our ... what? Studies proved no link and they are safe? Um... but, studies also ... false? ... um ... GLOBAL WARMING AND BUSH HATES BLACK PEOPLE!!
Posted by: mmurray821 || 02/25/2006 9:27 Comments || Top||

#6  Electric blankets are making a comeback, too.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 02/25/2006 10:34 Comments || Top||

#7  What about cell phones? He is not banning cell phones. Maybe he should put a Faraday Shield over the university and run everything on hydraulics. /tinfoil hat
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 02/25/2006 13:02 Comments || Top||

#8  Tell him, that as soon as your born everything you do slowly kills you, so live a little.
Posted by: djohn66 || 02/25/2006 13:10 Comments || Top||

#9  100 MegaWatts would be a fine, fine wireless router. Bet SPoD got one.
Posted by: 6 || 02/25/2006 13:54 Comments || Top||

#10  Crikey! You'd have indolent college kids stealing your bandwidth all the way down in Tierra del Fuego with that much power...
Posted by: Thraimble Greque5524 || 02/25/2006 14:06 Comments || Top||

#11  WEP is your friend, holey as it is ... heh
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 14:20 Comments || Top||

#12  100 megawatts? Damn, I wish I had one o' them things...

Not omnidirectional, though, I think. Something pointable.
Posted by: mojo || 02/25/2006 14:38 Comments || Top||

#13  Biological responses to electromagnetic fields

Posted by: john || 02/25/2006 15:03 Comments || Top||

#14  100 megawati megawatts? Daymn! I could set up the transmitter outside the garage and turn the snow to steam on my driveway during the worst of blizzards.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 02/25/2006 15:38 Comments || Top||

#15  Turn snow to steam... probably not too far off the mark: 100 million watts-- the output of nearly a quarter-million microwave ovens-- pumped into that dinky 6" long antenna on the router would yield some interesting phenomena, that's for sure.

The air around the router, probably for many meters, would be ionized a harsh, brilliant electric blue; and the temperature within a few feet of it would be higher than the surface of the Sun.

Happy Surfing, Doodz!!!

Posted by: Thraimble Greque5524 || 02/25/2006 16:23 Comments || Top||

#16  its sokay

i can walk on the sun.
Posted by: RD || 02/25/2006 17:26 Comments || Top||

#17  Mega, milli, whatever dude, it's a zoo out there!
Posted by: Inspector Clueso || 02/25/2006 18:27 Comments || Top||

#18  "Some studies have indicated that there are links to carcinogenetic occurrences in animals, including humans, that are related to energy fields associated with wireless hotspots, whether those hotspots are transmissions lines, whether they're outlets, plasma screens, or microwave ovens that leak."

Speaking of microwave ovens that leak, I had a friend in HS whose microwave was an old 70's beast that was built in to the cabinets of his parents' home. I was over there one day, goofing off and one of the other guys opened the microwave door WHILE it was still running and the thing kept running. Needless to say, I didn't have my tinfoil on, so there's no telling how messed up I am. And, on another note, what the heck's a "Carcinogenetic?" Is that something where I don't get cancer, but my kids could? Never actually heard the term, but I'm no zoologist.
Posted by: BA || 02/25/2006 22:01 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Culture Wars
Don Knotts RIP
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/25/2006 20:01 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [251 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Noooooooooooo!
Posted by: 6 || 02/25/2006 20:10 Comments || Top||

#2  "All I'm saying is that there are some things beyond the ken of mortal man that shouldn't be tampered with. We don't know everything, Andy. There's plenty going on right now in the Twilight Zone that we don't know anything about and I think we ought to stay clear."

Rest in peace.
Posted by: Mike || 02/25/2006 20:10 Comments || Top||

#3  Rest in Peace, indeed. An icon of humor, but a man of gentle grace.
Posted by: .com || 02/25/2006 20:13 Comments || Top||

#4  My wife moaned when she came across this a few minutes ago.

Bloodhound of the Law, RIP.
Posted by: Ptah || 02/25/2006 20:41 Comments || Top||

#5  Don Knotts (as Barney Fife on Andy Griffith) was the bug-eyed uncle who you would never put in charge of anything except taking care of another's heart.

Barney: "You give em 45, they take 50. You give em 55..."

Barney, in wedding drag, to Ernest T: "I wouldn't marry you if you were the last man on earth!"

Posted by: Jules || 02/25/2006 20:46 Comments || Top||

#6  He musta ran outta bullets in his shirt pocket.
Posted by: Captain America || 02/25/2006 21:06 Comments || Top||

Another CBS Fake News Item
The executive producer of CBS’ "48 Hours Mystery" has apologized for airing an altered image of the front page of the Tribune in an episode about the murder trial of Ryan Ferguson that aired Saturday night. CBS aired an altered image of the Tribune’s front page for its “48 Hours Mystery.” The producer, Susan Zirinsky, said she didn’t know the image of the front page containing the story about Ferguson’s sentencing had been manipulated until this week after Tribune Managing Editor Jim Robertson complained to CBS in an e-mail. "It was an egregious oversight for us not to know it," Zirinsky said. "It was a graphic, and we don’t feel it changed the editorial value of the story, per se."

Bob Steele, a senior ethics faculty member at the Poynter Institute, a premier journalism training center in Florida, said CBS executives should apologize to viewers and use the network’s Web site to explain what went wrong and accept responsibility for an ethical failure. "What they did wrong was twofold," he said. "One, they altered reality by changing a piece of documentary journalism. Secondly, they deceived their viewers because they left them with the impression that what they showed was a truthful representation of what the newspaper showed."

The TV newsmagazine showed several front pages from the Tribune during its hourlong program "Dream Killer," about the trial of Ferguson, found guilty in October of killing Tribune Sports Editor Kent Heitholt. During the show, which raised the question of whether Ferguson was wrongly convicted, a graphic of the Tribune’s Dec. 5 front page showed a photograph of Ferguson that was different from what actually appeared in the Tribune. The original photograph showed Ferguson in a jail uniform as he appeared at his sentencing. In "Dream Killer," Ferguson was shown in a suit and tie.

Zirinsky said the graphic has been changed in the master tape of the program to accurately reflect the Tribune’s front page. A freelancer hired by CBS for the first time was responsible for the alteration, Zirinsky said. "We feel we are doing the right thing," she said. "We have apologized to the editor."
Eh? Looks like a minor oversight to me.
I gather the tone of the whole program was slanted towards this killer. Photoshopping the newspaper front page to make him look respectable and mature rather than the shot of him in an orange jumpsuit talking to his lawyer in court fits that. They really didn't need to show the newspaper at all, so why do it if not to convey a visual impression?
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [254 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Right on lotp. The producers 'editorial value per se' was the murderer didn't look innocent in orange.
Posted by: Inspector Clueso || 02/25/2006 1:00 Comments || Top||

#2  bet the guys at LGF will be having a hoot over this lol - Fake but Accurate - lol
Posted by: ShepUK || 02/25/2006 4:26 Comments || Top||

#3  Wouldn't it be more efficient just to post articles about things that See BS News gets right? At this point there's got to be a presumption that anything CBS produces is fictitious.
Posted by: Matt || 02/25/2006 12:03 Comments || Top||

#4  I bet Bob Schieffer's not even his real name....
Posted by: Frank G || 02/25/2006 13:02 Comments || Top||

#5  Well this is what you get when your bias a certain way, objectivity goes out the window and this crap happens
Posted by: djohn66 || 02/25/2006 13:12 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Politix
IRS: Charities Overstepping Into Politics
IRS exams found nearly three out of four churches, charities and other civic groups suspected of having violated restraints on political activity in the 2004 election actually did so, the agency said Friday.

Most of the examinations that have concluded found only a single, isolated incidence of prohibited campaign activity. In three cases, however, the IRS uncovered violations egregious enough to recommend revoking the groups' tax-exempt status.

The vast majority of charities and churches followed the law, but the examinations found a "disturbing" amount of political intervention in the 2004 elections, IRS Commissioner Mark Everson said.

"It's disturbing not because it's pervasive, but because it has the potential to really grow and have a very bad impact on the integrity of charities and churches," Everson said in an interview.

The tax agency looked only at charities, churches and other tax-exempt organizations referred to the IRS for potentially violating laws that bar them from participating in or intervening in elections, including advocating for or against any candidate.

Those referred to the IRS represent a tiny fraction of more than 1 million tax-exempt organizations organized under section 501(c)(3) of the tax law.

The IRS examined 110 organizations referred to the tax agency for potentially violations, and 28 cases remain open. Among the 82 closed cases, the IRS found prohibited politicking and sent a written warning to 55 organizations and assessed a penalty tax against one group. Those organizations included 37 churches and 19 other organizations.

In the three additional cases in which the IRS recommended revoking tax-exempt status, none of the organizations were churches. The agency did not identify the three. The IRS found tax violations unrelated to politics in five cases. Examinations of the 18 remaining groups did not turn up any wrongdoing.

In some cases, the IRS found flagrant violations of the law. In others, charities did not understand their obligations. Many activities fall into an ambiguous area that requires closer scrutiny of context and timing.

"There are very few places where you can draw bright lines," Everson said. "People have to think about this."

Among the prohibited activities, the examiners found that charities and churches had distributed printed material supporting a preferred candidate and assembled improper voter guides or candidate ratings.

Religious leaders had used the pulpit to endorse or oppose a particular candidate, and some groups had shown preferential treatment to candidates by letting them speak at functions.
yes, we watched al-Kerry at some of them
Other charities and churches had made improper cash contributions to a candidate's political campaign.

The IRS said the cases covered "the full spectrum" of political viewpoints.

The tax agency set up a task force in 2004 to review allegations of improper political activity. The special procedures, revealed shortly before the election, drew criticism from some tax-exempt groups.

An audit by Treasury Department inspectors found nothing inappropriate in the examinations, but it faulted the IRS for creating the appearance of political motivations by waiting too long to announce the project and contact organizations.

The IRS said it plans to continue using the task force, and its speedier procedures, for this year's election and in the future. It also released detailed guidance to charities and churches about the prohibitions against political activities.
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [267 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Sort of missed that NAACP anti-Bush commercial during the 2000 election didn't they?

Bets on how many of the MSM cover the religious radical lefties in this mess?
Posted by: Ulaish Elmereger4626 || 02/25/2006 8:30 Comments || Top||

#2  I think both the left and the right did this. The left seemed more open about it - as always they believed that it was their superior right to do so. However, the right did it as well.

Churches should stay out endorsing candidates. While it is natural that their message might influence voting, as is only natural, blatant endorsement should be punished with the loss of their tax exempt status.
Posted by: 2b || 02/25/2006 14:53 Comments || Top||

#3  Agreed. The job of the church is to change the government by changing the people, not changing the people by changing the government.
Posted by: Ptah || 02/25/2006 20:07 Comments || Top||

#4  well said, Ptah. I'll have to remember that one.
Posted by: 2b || 02/25/2006 21:18 Comments || Top||

India’s ‘supercops’ in firing line over mob links
Many people supported the ‘supercops’ because snuffing out the bad guys, most felt, was better than putting them through a failing justice system where witnesses could be manipulated and cases drag on for years

Once the poster boy of Mumbai’s police force and eulogised by Bollywood filmmakers, Daya Nayak has been accused of corruption and links with the underworld

For eight years, Daya Nayak killed with impunity - sometimes with his pistol but often with an AK-47 automatic rifle - as he bumped off people suspected to be gangsters or involved in acts of terrorism in Mumbai.

These days, the policeman just kills time.

Once the poster boy of Mumbai’s police force and eulogised by Bollywood filmmakers, Nayak helped to dramatically curb organised crime in India’s financial capital, breaking the back of violent gangs and sending mobsters on the run.

But after years of tormenting crime dons, the past has returned to haunt him.

The tall, moustachioed Nayak, 34, has been arrested and ordered held until early March as anti-corruption officers probe allegations he had amassed wealth, including real estate worth millions of rupees, far beyond what his salary could pay for. Nayak is not alone in his fall from grace. More than half a dosen officers of a crack force, formed over a decade ago, have been accused of corruption and links with the underworld.

Known in the Indian media as “encounter specialists” for shooting down criminals in raids, the men have either been dismissed or suspended until an investigation into their financial assets is completed.

Nayak’s critics claim that as well as taking mob money; the so-called “supercops” have been routinely killing gangsters in stage-managed shootouts and in custody. Human rights workers have branded the deaths nothing more than extra-judicial executions.

“I’ve done nothing wrong. These charges are false,” the sub-inspector, who says he killed over 80 criminals in shootouts, said recently after appearing in a Mumbai court.

In the late 1990s, Mumbai, then known as Bombay, faced a tide of mafia killings, abductions and extortion demands.

Poor migrants from villages and small towns were drafted into gangs, taking up the gun for cash, earning relatively small amounts but more than they could hope to make honestly.

The underworld was remote-controlled by bosses based in Dubai, Malaysia and Karachi who had fled India to avoid arrest, leaving behind associates to carry out their orders.

Rough Justice: Mumbai’s authorities hit back, giving a free hand to officers like Nayak who worked informers and wielded their guns to administer justice.

In a decade of violent confrontations, the officers busted hideouts and shot dead at least 350 suspected gangsters, drawing cheers from businessmen and the Bollywood set, prime mob targets.

Newspapers splashed photographs of the officers across their front pages, while film directors explored Nayak’s climb from abject poverty. Many people supported the “supercops” because snuffing out the bad guys, most felt, was better than putting them through a failing justice system where witnesses could be manipulated and cases drag on for years. Human rights activists say police routinely killed criminals in cold blood after taking them to a lonely spot and telling them to run. When they did so, or even if they did not, they were shot, usually in the back.

“They kill them (criminals) somewhere and then take their bodies to hospital and put it down as a shootout death,” PA Sebastian, a human rights activist, told Reuters.

Sometimes, rights activists allege, officers blaze away as they compete with each other for media headlines.

But police say they open fire only in self-defence.

“Does a policeman enjoy killing? Those killed are trying to get us. They aren’t saints,” said officer Pradeep Sharma, who police records say has shot dead 104 criminals.

Sharma is facing an inquiry in the disappearance of an accused in a 2002 bomb blast in Mumbai. Human rights activists say the man, Khwaja Yunus, was killed in custody while police say he simply escaped.

“Many of these encounters are fake and killings by police extrajudicial,” said criminal lawyer Majeed Memon.

Sharma’s boss says the controversial tactics have yielded results.

“It’s for all to see that stern police activity has curbed crimes,” Mumbai police commissioner AN Roy said. reuters
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/25/2006 10:16 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [272 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Daya Nayak - does that translate to Vic Mackey in English?

Posted by: Raj || 02/25/2006 14:06 Comments || Top||

#2  Sub Inspector Daya Nayak of the Mumbai Police, encounter specialist (at least 83 kills)

He recalls being shot twice and badly wounded when he ambushed a notorious gangster in 1997.

"I shot him dead in front of 10-15,000 people, but got hit twice. I was in hospital for 27 days."
Posted by: john || 02/25/2006 14:37 Comments || Top||

#3  Hollywierd and Bollywood with ties to the mob? I'm shocked! Shocked!!
Posted by: 2b || 02/25/2006 14:38 Comments || Top||

SC wants facts on girls’ conversion
The Supreme Court on Friday ordered its deputy registrar in Karachi to confirm whether the conversion of three newly converted girls was forced or based on their free will. The court ordered its Karachi Registry to meet Reena, 21, Reema, 17, and Usha, 18, in the presence of a Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) representative at the Edhi Home and record their statements to ascertain whether they accepted Islam out of their free will or under pressure. “In our opinion it is appropriate to record statements of the girls under oath to verify whether the statement of their counsel was correct or not,” a three-member bench consisting of Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Faqir Khokhar and Justice Shakirullah Jan observed.

The girls were living in Madrassa Taleemul Quran in Karachi, but were later shifted to Edhi Home on the orders of the Supreme Court. An FIR was lodged regarding the girls’ abduction and rape. The three sisters were later found in a religious seminary getting Islamic education. The Supreme Court took up the application and summoned the girls to record their statement. The girls appeared in court on December 16 and testified that they had accepted Islam out of their free will. On Friday, their counsel gave a letter written by them to the court, stating that it was difficult for them to travel from Karachi to Islamabad for hearings, thus their case may be disposed of.
Posted by: Fred || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [250 views] Top|| File under:

SC directs IGs to stop marriages for compensation
The Supreme Court on Friday directed the inspectors general of police (IGPs) of the four provinces and the Northern Areas to stop women’s marriages to settle family feuds, declaring the customs of Vani and Swara un-Islamic. A three-member bench consisting of Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Faqir Muhammad Khokhar and Justice Mian Shakirullah Jan directed the IGPs to protect Vani victims. The court also summoned a report from the IGPs by the last week of April.

The court was moved to abolish the social customs of Vani and Swara (a mode of dispute settlement in which young girls of the offender’s family are wedded to the men of the victim family as compensation). The court also heard the cases of five girls from Mianwali who have appealed to President Pervez Musharraf and the chief justice to save them from Vani, and a petition by freelance anthropologist Samar Minallah against the notorious customs. Five girls – Asiya, 8, Amina, 9, her sisters Abida, 7, Sajida, 5, and Fatima, 7 – were given in verbal Nikah in compensation of a murder to save their elders. Amina, Sajida and Abida have reportedly threatened to commit suicide if not protected from the custom.
Posted by: Fred || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [235 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Oh, if only a man could have two wives...

-- Al Bundy
Posted by: badanov || 02/25/2006 10:55 Comments || Top||

Southeast Asia
New Thai parliamentary elections set for April 2
Posted by: Fred || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [248 views] Top|| File under:

Thailand PM Thaksin dissolves parliament
due to financial issues, but it opens the door to Muslim extremists winning seats
I doubt that'll happen. They'd be a side issue, since they're concentrated in the far south. But I don't imagine Toxin will be back as PM after the elections. Most anybody they get will have more testicular heft and less corruption baggage to lug around.
Posted by: lotp || 02/25/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [232 views] Top|| File under:

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Sat 2006-02-25
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Fri 2006-02-24
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Thu 2006-02-23
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Wed 2006-02-22
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Sat 2006-02-18
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