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Today: 60 articles and 138 comments as of 11:11.
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Unconfirmed: Saudi spy chief Prince Bandar assassinated, report says
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
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1 15:40 Fester Clunter7205 [352] 
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6 23:13 DarthVader [579] 
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18 21:50 Thing From Snowy Mountain [752]
4 14:38 rjschwarz [367]
3 14:17 Pheasing Guelph5384 [2903]
Page 6: Politix
5 22:56 JosephMendiola [630]
8 14:34 rjschwarz [358]
2 12:17 newc [416]
7 14:25 JohnQC [460]
3 11:43 Frank G [631]
2 11:43 JohnQC [669]
14 16:41 European Conservative [586]
1 08:30 Bright Pebbles [342]
-Short Attention Span Theater-
Fort Benning Sarge, Vincent Hancock, wins gold again in skeet. 2008 and 2012
Posted by: Water Modem || 07/31/2012 11:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [336 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I forgot to point out it was a new world record
Posted by: Water Modem || 07/31/2012 11:37 Comments || Top||

Fire kills four guests at live Ramadan TV show
[Dawn] Four television guests were killed during a live Ramadan broadcast in Pakistain on Monday, when fire gutted a studio in the eastern city of Lahore, police said.
"That's enterta-a-a-a-a-i-i-i-inment!"
An electricity short circuit sparked an inferno at the Koh-e-Noor channel building at 3:46 am as the programme, Sehri Transmission, was being aired.
"Fatima! Come watch this show!"
"At least four local guests, who were participating in a religious programme, were killed and nine others maimed when God struck them dead in the fire," local police official Omar Farooq told AFP. Transmission was cut when the fire began.
"Cut! Lunch, everybody!"
Around 45 people, including crew and channel staff, had been in the studio but most managed to escape through emergency exits, police said.
"Outta my way!"
"Mahmoud! Get a camera on that!"

"Our initial investigation reveals that a deity hated them an electricity short-circuit as the chief cause of the fire but we are still investigating," Farooq said.
"We have to wait until the holy man's done with the exorcism."
TV channel official Kamran Sarfaraz and a local rescue official confirmed the incident.
"Dat's right. We seen it."
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [521 views] Top|| File under:

#1  3:46am?
Posted by: gromky || 07/31/2012 2:05 Comments || Top||

#2  Can't wait for re-runs...
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2012 7:36 Comments || Top||

#3  "and now for a little Ramadan entertainment: Great White!"
Posted by: Frank G || 07/31/2012 10:13 Comments || Top||

#4  What did they build the studio out of? Flash paper and gasoline?
Posted by: mojo || 07/31/2012 12:19 Comments || Top||

#5  Tonight on "Insh'Allah Electrician"...
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/31/2012 18:47 Comments || Top||

Are migraines more common than thought?
Merely one of many things that're more common than thought. Like speech.
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [579 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The neurologists in Evans's study were attending a course on headache, so he may have sampled a group of doctors especially interested in headache - which could include those who suffer migraines themselves.

And this passes for science?
Posted by: Bobby || 07/31/2012 5:59 Comments || Top||

#2  Migraines are widespread in any case.
Posted by: Anguper Hupomosing9418 || 07/31/2012 11:29 Comments || Top||

#3  As a past sufferer of migraines, that quit as mysteriously as they began after 20 years, I can tell you that people don't know that their headaches are migraines. They know it hurts, that's it. Probably a very under-diagnosed condition that many people don't have the $$ to address, just treat it with excedrin migraine or whatever else they can afford.
They are a miserable malady that I wouldn't wish on anyone. My wife complains of them about every 28 days, so there may be a hormonal connection for her. In my case, when I moved from Kentucky to California, I don't think I've had a single migraine since living in the state for the last 3 years. A mold or fungus maybe? Pollen or spores? Who knows, but whatever it was, they can definately keep it there.
Posted by: bigjim-CA || 07/31/2012 11:35 Comments || Top||

#4  One of the minor characters in Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin suffered from 'sick headaches', the old term for migraines, which suggests they were common enough at the time to need no further explanation.
Posted by: trailing wife || 07/31/2012 11:39 Comments || Top||

#5  The thing is, there is no way to compare. I suspect anecdotally that it depends a lot on your pain tolerance and definition of what a migraine is. If someone has a bad headache they probably call it a migraine but it might be nothing compared to a real migraine and might be caused by other factors entirely.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 07/31/2012 14:42 Comments || Top||

#6  I thought I kept getting bad sinus infections, but the doctor looked at it and they turned out to be migraines. Happened for 13 years... then stopped. No one knows why. I suspect a lot of different types of headaches are actually migraines.
Posted by: DarthVader || 07/31/2012 23:13 Comments || Top||

Africa North
Moroccan King Vows to Press Ahead with Reforms
[An Nahar] Morocco's King Mohammed VI vowed on Monday to press ahead with reforms, including strengthening the independence of the judiciary and battling corruption, in a speech to mark 13 years on the throne.

"Justice, regionalization and territorial governance are among our top priorities," he said in the speech broadcast live on state television.
... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe?
But equally important are the provisions "of the new constitution, relating to good governance, the fight against corruption and social and economic development," he added.

As Arab Spring uprisings toppled autocratic regimes in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya last year and pro-democracy protests brewed at home, the king announced political concessions.

A new constitution, approved by referendum last July, transferred some of his near-absolute powers to parliament and the prime minister, and paved the way for November elections that propelled a moderate Islamist party to power.

In his speech, the king stressed the moderate nature of Islam practiced in the North African country, while underlining efforts to boost economic development, with unemployment and high prices behind much of Morocco's popular discontent.

"Morocco remains a model of commitment to Sunni Islam advocating a balanced middle ground and tolerance, and proscribing extremism, fanaticism and ostracism," he said.
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [342 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring

Down Under
Australian Islamic school ordered to repay $9 million
Sydney Islamic school Malek Fahd has been forced to repay $9 million in NSW government funding because it was found to be transferring money to a Muslim organisation.

Mr Piccoli said the school did not receive services in return for money it gave to the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils.

Mr Piccoli has written to the Federal Minister for Education, Peter Garrett, saying that he had referred the matter to police and the Australian Securities and Investment Commission.
Posted by: ryuge || 07/31/2012 02:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [327 views] Top|| File under:

Post office nears historic default on $5B payment
The U.S. Postal Service is bracing for a first-ever default on billions in payments due to the Treasury, adding to widening uncertainty about the mail agency's solvency as first-class letters plummet and Congress deadlocks on ways to stem the red ink.

With cash running perilously low, two legally required payments for future postal retirees' health benefits - $5.5 billion due Wednesday, and another $5.6 billion due in September - will be left unpaid, the mail agency said Monday. Postal officials said they also are studying whether they may need to delay other obligations. In the coming months, a $1.5 billion payment is due to the Labor Department for workers compensation, which for now it expects to make, as well as millions in interest payments to the Treasury.

The defaults won't stir any kind of catastrophe in day-to-day mail service. Post offices will stay open, mail trucks will run, employees will get paid, current retirees will get health benefits.

But a growing chorus of analysts, labor unions and business customers are troubled by continuing losses that point to deeper, longer-term financial damage, as the mail agency finds it increasingly preoccupied with staving off immediate bankruptcy while Congress delays on a postal overhaul bill.
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [532 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Take it out of Congress' pension fund. They have plenty of money. Share the pain, heh.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 07/31/2012 0:27 Comments || Top||

#2  If you think the Post Office is doing good, just imagine what Federal health care would look like in 50 years!
Posted by: Bobby || 07/31/2012 5:57 Comments || Top||

#3  We do not need a post office in 21st century America.

It was a great idea in the 18th century. It worked in the 19th. It was okay in the 20th. It began to break down near the end of that century.

We do not need a post office today. Take this simple test --

Gather all your mail for a month. Sort it to a) financial (bills, statements, etc) b) personal (letters, cards) and c) junk (everything else).

Which pile will be by far the largest at the end of the month? That's right.

The Post Office does less and less first-class mail, and more and more junk mail on behalf of corporations. Thanks Capital One but I DON'T WANT YOUR FRIGGIN' CARD. I don't need 50 invitations.

Packages can be delivered by UPS. Financial information can be delivered by secure web and email. Personal letters are Facebook, Twitter or email. Junk mail can be delivered by someone willing to pay full freight.

Wind it down. Pension off the older postal employees (the societal change isn't their fault) and provide a decent separation package for the younger employees (ditto).

Make a public declaration that in (say) 20 years the post office will close permanently. People will adapt. We're Americans.
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2012 7:41 Comments || Top||

#4  Disagree. There are fine and dandy substitutions for the urban/suburban environments, but rural America [which till the latter half of the 20th Century was most of America], still needs the function of the Constitutionally mandate requirement "To establish post offices and post roads;". [BTW, as a stickler of others in 'interpreting' the Constitution rather than amending it because its inconvenient, this would require an Article V action if we choose to end it.]

It was never seen to be a 'profit' making part of the federal system. It was always expected to lose money [just not billions mainly in pension commitments]. It was one of the last of the old patronage departments of the government. Local Post Masters changed with elections. It also kept costs down because the local Congresscritters didn't want to do something so close to home to upset their voters.

It doesn't need it 6 days a week. It doesn't need next day delivery. It does require a radical downsizing and orientation, to include as part of the federal system the elimination of closed shop/collective bargaining by state employees.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 07/31/2012 8:47 Comments || Top||

#5  Yeah, what he said. The mail is only junk mail, actual letters are almost nonexistent and bank statements and the like are all online now.

Can you believe that the Post Office actually has programs to make it easier to send junk mail? Incredible.
Posted by: gromky || 07/31/2012 11:45 Comments || Top||

#6  We do not need a post office in 21st century America.

Disagree. We have neither the electronic payment nor legal infrastructure necessary to move to a completely paper-free marketplace. The postal service is still of extreme import to small business.
Posted by: Ulorong Thud8932 || 07/31/2012 12:42 Comments || Top||

#7  I am pretty sure if the post office charged the junk mail senders more money, they would be makiing a profit.
Posted by: texhooey || 07/31/2012 12:47 Comments || Top||

#8  Post office fascinates me. On the normal workdays they can't possibly finish their rounds in the normal time so they get overtime or something but on Saturday when there is no overtime somehow they make all of the deliveries and nobody questions this?

Five days a week is sufficient. Heck, if it wasn't for Netflix I'd be content to get all my mail on Friday (especially if you include an opt-out for anything addrssed to neighbor or occupant or other spam. Perhaps that could be an option that might help them speed through their route the rest of the week.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 07/31/2012 14:47 Comments || Top||

#9  I am pretty sure if the post office charged the junk mail senders more money, they would be makiing a profit.

What would Capitol One do if the Post Office jacked up their rates for junk mail? If the junk mail stopped, what would happen to the postal workers and their union?
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 07/31/2012 16:04 Comments || Top||

#10  Fear not, USPS, as a US courts declared that Iran + Al-Qaeda, etc. perpetrators of 9-11 have to payout US$9.0Bilyuhn in damages to Victims.

The US Govt's share comes out to ????????????
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 07/31/2012 23:00 Comments || Top||

Religious freedom low in Afghanistan, Pakistan: US
[Dawn] The US on Monday criticized allies Afghanistan and Pakistain for poorly defending religious freedom.

A State Department report says Afghanistan's courts interpret Islamic law to punish non-Moslems for exercising their faith.

And it cites Pakistain for issuing death sentences for blasphemy. Despite increased hard boy attacks on minorities or even tolerant Moslems there, it says, authorities have rarely investigated perpetrators.

Monday's report particularly highlights blasphemy and religious "defamation" laws.

The department lamented long prison sentences and lashings for people in Soddy Arabia
...a kingdom taking up the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. Its primary economic activity involves exporting oil and soaking Islamic rubes on the annual hajj pilgrimage. The country supports a large number of princes in whatcha might call princely splendor. When the oil runs out the rest of the world is going to kick sand in their national face...
charged with insulting the Prophet Mohammad ((PTUI!)).

Government efforts against "violent hard boys" also came under scrutiny. The report says Bahraini, Russian, Iraqi and Nigerian authorities do not always distinguish terrorism from peaceful religious practice.
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [352 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  How many muslim countries allow freedom of religion?
Posted by: Fester Clunter7205 || 07/31/2012 15:40 Comments || Top||

PPP-PML-N 'alliance' responsible for current crises: Imran
[Dawn] Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf
...a political party in Pakistan. PTI was founded by former Pakistani cricket captain and philanthropist Imran Khan. The party's slogan is Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem, each of which is open to widely divergent interpretations....
(PTI) chief Imran Khan
... aka Taliban Khan, who ain't the sharpest bulb on the national tree...
on Monday declared 'alliance' of Pakistain People's Party (PPP) and Pakistain Moslem League-Nawaz (PML-N) responsible for current crises in the country, DawnNews reported.

Speaking to a ceremony for giving party's membership to MNA Afzal Sindhu, Khan reiterated that the PTI will not join hands with any party currently sitting in the parliament.

He said that both major parties (PPP and PML-N) will become minor, once the caretaker government is setup. Khan alleged that the both parties have forced people to remain loyal to them by threatening them of filing criminal cases against them.

Earlier, the PTI chief, while inaugurating the party's media cell at its central secretariat in Islamabad, said media plays vital role in making or breaking the situations and therefore it is a very sensitive area to deal with.

Jehangir Tareen,
... who sounds like he holds soup...
Saifullah Niazi
Saifullah Nazi?
and Naeem-ul-Haq were also present on the occasion.
"We're here! Make sure you spell our names right!"
"Media is an integral part of any political party. It must utilise its resources and potential to make it an effective medium for the party and in general," said Khan.

Earlier, Ahmad Jawad, head of media cell welcomed the party chairman and gave formal introduction of his team.
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [345 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

Two 'outlaws' gunned down near police picket
[Dawn] Police claimed to have bumped off two alleged criminals in a 'shootout' in D-Block, Phase V of Defence Housing Authority, early Sunday.

Police said they seized a cycle of violence and two pistols with live rounds from the spot and despatched the bodies for an appointment with Dr. Quincy.

Cantonment SP (Operations) Maroof Safdar Wahla told Dawn the Defence B coppers present at a picket signaled four suspicious men riding two cycle of violences to stop for checking around 3am.

The bikers, instead of stopping at the picket, opened fire on police, damaging a police vehicle parked nearby. They tried to escape while firing at coppers who gave them a chase and resorted to retaliatory fire.

In the cross-fire that lasted a few minutes, two of the suspects fell onto the ground and later was struck down in his prime, the SP said, adding their two accomplices managed to escape.

He said the dead suspects were later identified as Rehmat Ali and Pervez Khan, both residents of Hanjhravi village Pattoki tehsil.

Mr Wahla said the police record showed that Rehmat was nominated in eight criminal cases including those of murder, attempted murder, dacoity, robbery, kidnapping, illegal arms etc, registered in cop shoppes of Saray Mughal, Saddar Kasur, City Chunian and Saddar Pattoki of Kasur district.

He said Rehmat was also involved in extortions and his father and two brothers too had been killed in crossfire with police in Kasur district.

The SP said the other outlaw, Pervez, was also a proclaimed offender in two murder cases registered in Kasur district and acted as Rehmat's bodyguard.
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2012 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [326 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

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4Arab Spring
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Meet the Mods
In no particular order...
Steve White
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Two weeks of WOT
Tue 2012-07-31
  Unconfirmed: Saudi spy chief Prince Bandar assassinated, report says
Mon 2012-07-30
  Nine dead after Dagestani raid
Sun 2012-07-29
  Syria Rebels Fend Off Aleppo Assault
Sat 2012-07-28
  Helicopter gunships strafe Aleppo
Fri 2012-07-27
  62 Mexican Policias Federales kidnapped in Michoacan
Thu 2012-07-26
  Syrian envoy to Cyprus defects
Wed 2012-07-25
  Syrian forces attack mosque, kill 30
Tue 2012-07-24
  Syrian Army Retakes Most of Damascus
Mon 2012-07-23
  23 wounded in Iraq car bombing
Sun 2012-07-22
  Pencilneck may use chemical weapons against rebels
Sat 2012-07-21
  Islamic Jihad Leadership Abandons Syria For Iran
Fri 2012-07-20
  Syria Rebels Take 'All Iraq Border Points'
Thu 2012-07-19
  Pencilneck runs away to Latakia
Wed 2012-07-18
  Two Buses With 40 Israeli Tourists Blown Up At Bulgarian Airport
Tue 2012-07-17
  Blast kills MP in Mogadishu, Militants claim responsibility

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