Saturday, November 01, 2014

A single act of caring creates an endless ripple...

Police checking woman's phone for evidence of drug trafficking find instead videos of her having sex with a dog!!!

POLICE found more than they bargained for when checks of a woman’s phone for suspected drug trafficking unveiled a cache of dirty videos in which she allegedly had sex with a dog.

Jenna Louise Driscoll, 25, appeared in Brisbane Magistrates Court yesterday charged with trafficking, possession of a dangerous drug, two counts of possession of an item used in the commission of a crime, three counts of supplying and a further three counts of bestiality.

Defence lawyer Rachel Cavalli asked for her client to be granted bail, which was not opposed.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Scott Pearson asked for reporting conditions that required Driscoll to report to police once a week and reside at a unit at Enoggera in Brisbane’s northwest.

He said the drug trafficking involved Driscoll allegedly dealing cannabis to a group of friends. Full story...

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The Olympics: the biggest corporatist sports scam of all...

The 2022 Olympics (i.e., the Winter Games) is now down to only two applicant nations: China and Kazakhstan. This follows the withdrawal of Norway after the taxpayers of Norway balked on ponying up the cash necessary to make the Olympics a playground for the world’s richest cronies and politicians.

Theoretically, the Olympics are a private organization, but in practice, it is a corporatist organization run by plutocrats whose mission in life is apparently to squeeze as much tax revenue as possible out of the residents of the countries and cities that host the Olympics. This is done by demanding the usual brand-spanking new stadiums and facilities from the host cities that later become white elephants. But the IOC also demands countless perks for itself, such as only the finest food and drink, and special driving lanes on streets and highways. (See photos of the abandoned Olympics facilities in Athens.)

Faced with a bevy of such demands in a 7,000-page dossier from the IOC, Norway chose to withdrawal. The “diva-like demands for luxury treatment” for the IOC were outlined by the Norwegian media, including: Full story...

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‘This is apartheid!’ Israeli minister blasts bus segregation for Palestinians...

Requests for separate buses for Palestinians in Israel are “unacceptable” and resemble “apartheid,” the country’s Justice Minister said, adding that this kind of discrimination is banned by Israeli law.

“It’s intolerable, the claims that they [the settlers] need their own buses, because one [Palestinian] didn’t get up for a woman or an elderly person, and another wasn’t nice to them. This is apartheid!” Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni said.

“That’s something I find unacceptable, and I’ll work against it,” she vowed. “This is discrimination that’s forbidden by Israeli law.”

 Livni’s statements come after the country’s Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon decided that West Bank Arabs working in Israel should have their own segregated public buses when traveling to and from Israel via a single crossing. Full story...

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Scientology goes on the offensive in Switzerland...

The Church of Scientology is planning to build a temple in Basel as part of a worldwide expansion plan, according to a Swiss newspaper report.


The church's president in Basel, Patrick Schnidrig, confirmed to Der Sonntag that the organisation is planning to build a new church, although the final location will not be decided until the end of November.

However, the newspaper reported on Sunday that Schnidrig bought a plot of land in the Hegenheimer district in April, along with Zurich-based member Henry Renggli. The space comprises two adjacent office buildings on Burgfelderstrasse 211 and Kyasersberg 3 that currently house a petrol station, a workshop and an electrical substation.

The potential location lies close to the French border, a fact that has led some to speculate the organisation is seeking to attract new members from France, a country where the church has often been at odds with the authorities.

A new temple in Basel would form part of the sect’s worldwide growth plans. The Church of Scientology recently announced at a fund-raising event in the United States that it planned to build 70 new churches, including the one in Basel. Full story...

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Swiss shun religion for the supernatural...

While the number of religious people in Switzerland is on the decline, nearly two thirds of Swiss believe in the supernatural, according to a new survey.

The survey, carried out by Institut LINK on behalf of internet provider Swisscom, found that of the 1,253 people aged 15 to 74 who were interviewed, around two-thirds believed in the existence of “things that reason and science cannot explain.”

Some 24 percent believed in angels, 20 percent in miracles, 17 percent in telepathy, 14 percent in reincarnation and 13 percent in astrology.

Of those who said they believed in the supernatural, 16 percent of women and nine percent of men said they had had a supernatural experience themselves.

 More than two-thirds of the women and half of the men surveyed said they believed that some people have supernatural powers. Full story...

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Woman sues Google after Street View image shows her exposed breast...

A woman has sued Google after it published an image of her with one of her breasts partially exposed on its map service Street View.

Maria Pia Grillo was awarded damages after a Canadian court found the company had invaded her privacy.

Google had blurred out her face, but Ms Grillo said she was identifiable by her car’s registration plate.

According to court documents she was shocked and embarrassed when she stumbled across the photograph while looking at an image of her house in Montreal in 2009.

The image showed her sitting at home with “part of her breast exposed”. She had been photographed leaning forward while she checked her phone. Full story...

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Swedish FM to Israel's Lieberman: I'd be happy to send you IKEA flat pack...

A somewhat unusual war of words took place Thursday, after the new Swedish government made good on a recent pledge to recognize the state of Palestine, a move to which Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman responded furiously.

"The Swedish government should understand that Middle East relations are more complex than a piece of self-assembled IKEA furniture, and the matter should be handled with responsibility and sensitivity," Lieberman said, as he announced that Israel would be pulling its ambassador from Stockholm.

But Swedish counterpart Margot Wallstrom was unmoved by Lieberman's analogy.

"I will be happy to send Israel FM Lieberman an IKEA flat pack to assemble," she said. "He'll see it requires a partner, cooperation and a good manual." Full story...

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Afghan first lady backs French veil ban...

Afghanistan’s cosmopolitan new first lady has backed France’s controversial ban on the niqab, comparing the full veil to “blinders” as she prepares to campaign for more respect for women in her conservative adopted homeland.

Rula Ghani shocked Afghan observers when she appeared with her husband during the presidential campaign, a rare example of a political wife sharing the spotlight.

Now the Lebanese-American of Christian heritage is set to carve out a role for herself as the patriarchal and deeply Muslim nation’s first high-profile first lady.

Ghani, who speaks five languages, reminisced about her time as a student at the prestigious Sciences Po university in Paris which she attended during the late 1960s. Full story...

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Friday, October 31, 2014

New evidence in the case against pasteurized milk...

Milk is the only beverage still aggressively pushed on children as a health promoting food when it is the exact opposite – a disease promoting food. Drinking pasteurized milk is not nearly as good for general health or bones as the dairy industry has made it out to be. In fact, this fairy tale of “milk doing a body good” is being exposed more frequently by many independent scientists and researchers who have had just about enough of the propaganda. According to a large scale study of thousands of Swedish people, cow’s milk has a deteriorating effect on health when consumed in the long-term. The research was published in The BMJ.

The study, which tracked 61,433 women aged 39 to 74 over 20 years, and 45,339 men of similar age for 11 years, found that the more cow’s milk people drank, the more likely they were to die or experience a bone fracture during the study period.

The risks were especially pronounced for women, a group advised to drink milk to help avoid bone fractures that result from osteoporosis.

Women who said they drank three or more glasses of milk a day had almost double the chance of dying during the study period as those who reported drinking only one. A glass is defined as a 200 millilitre serving. They also had a 16 percent higher chance of getting a bone fracture anywhere in the body. Full story...

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Growing unease among parents, lawmakers over biometric student tracking systems...

A growing number of schools are using special tracking chips embedded in student ID cards or biometric scanners to track students, and the new technology is making many lawmakers nervous about its privacy implications.

The relatively new tracking technology allows schools to more accurately follow student attendance, lunch purchases and students who ride buses, but lawmakers in many states have banned specific types of student data collection over privacy concerns, Governing.com reports.

“This year, Florida became the first state to ban the use of biometric identification in its schools. Kansas said biometric data cannot be collected without student or parental consent. New Hampshire, Colorado and North Carolina said the state education departments cannot collect and store biometric data as part of student records.

“New Hampshire and Missouri lawmakers said schools can’t require students to use ID cards equipped with radio frequency identification (RFID) technology that can track them. The new laws are similar to one Oregon passed last year and what Rhode Island lawmakers passed in 2009,” according to the news site. Full story...

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Neil de Grasse Tyson and a story about race...

American Red Cross: A corporate fleecing operation exploiting natural disasters...

The American Red Cross is a corporate shell devouring millions of dollars in donations.

It not only fails to provide assistance to disaster victims but gets in the way of efforts by smaller, more efficient emergency relief efforts.

A joint investigation conducted by ProPublica and NPR discovered the Red Cross is not interested in its declared mission of “preventing and relieving suffering.” Instead, the organization diverts “assets for public relations purposes” and its distribution of relief supplies, according to one internal report, is “politically driven.”

This public relations agenda, designed to suck up donations from sympathetic Americans, resulted in a fake relief effort during Hurricane Isaac that was “worse than the storm,” according to Jim Dunham, a truck driver. Dunham said Red Cross trucks were dispatched “just to be seen” and were “sent way down on the Gulf with nothing to give.”

Demonstrating the Red Cross is nothing but a PR machine for wholesale theft, the report shows that during Hurricane Sandy “emergency vehicles were taken away from relief work and assigned to serve as backdrops for press conferences, angering disaster responders on the ground,” Justin Elliott, Jesse Eisinger and Laura Sullivan write for ProPublica. Full story...

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Sweden officially recognises state of Palestine in attempt to help end decades of conflict with Israel...

The Swedish government officially recognised a Palestinian state today, with Israel recalling its ambassador to the country over the decision.

The Swedish Foreign Minister, Margot Wallström, said she hoped it would boost efforts to end decades of Israeli-Palestinian conflict. “Our decision comes at a critical time because over the last year we have seen how the peace talks have stalled, how decisions over new settlements on occupied Palestinian land have complicated a two-state solution and how violence has returned to Gaza,” she said.

“There is an ongoing debate in many other EU member states and hopefully also a move in this direction.”

The move drew praise from the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, but Israel’s Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, called the move a “wretched decision” that would bolster extremists. A spokesman for the ministry later said Israel had recalled its ambassador for discussions. Full story...

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Hungary scraps its internet tax after protesters attack prime minister for curbing fundamental rights...

Hungary today scrapped a planned tax on internet data transfers after protests by tens of thousands of demonstrators over the last week.

A draft tax bill sparked anger across the country after including a provision for Internet providers to pay a tax of 150 forints (40 pence) per gigabyte of data traffic.

Critics said the law would not only increase the tax burden but also curb fundamental democratic rights and freedoms.

But Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who has been widely accused of adopting anti-democratic policies, today shelved the proposals because 'people have questioned the rationality' of the measure.

He said the government will hold a national consultation from mid-January about regulating and taxing the Internet and reconsider the matter next year.

Mr Orban also said Hungary would stick to its plan to offer broadband Internet access to every household by 2020. Full story...

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Time for Thai royalists to face reaity...

I have often asked myself why Thai royalists are so blindsided, so irrational and so acrimonious whenever anyone with a free-spirit questions the high-flying status of the royals or the vast sums of taxpayer money that goes to support them each year.

Thai authorities and royalists simply refuse to listen to reason and logic. It is virtually impossible to discuss anything regarding the subject in a peaceful way. I do not know how the country became this way but it seems to me everyone is living in fear, especially in the light of the royalist-supported coup d' etat by Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha who has appointed himself the new prime minister.

Thai royalists even put a stigma on those who disagree with them by creating a social taboo with the Thai words "Lom Chow (ล้มเจ้า)," as if people with inquisitive minds are bad people. The royalists and those aged elites would want Thailand to roll backward to the Puritan Era so they can impose their own barbaric rules and dictatorship against the Thai people.

Sorry, with all due respect, I cannot buy their out-of-touch concept, even to my own detriment. This is the 21st Century and the Age of the Information Superhighway; free-thinking Thai people must be united and set the country free. We must not let the less than 1 percent of selfish elites to control 85 percent of the wealth and economy of the country.

I could understand the poor and uneducated living in Thailand who have been bombarded with nonstop royal propaganda since birth while, at the same time, truthful and negative information is blocked by the state apparatus such as Ministry of Information and Technology (ICT) and the royalist-controlled print and television media. Full story...

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Modi govt bars first class travel, five-star hotel meetings for officials...

Unveiling an austerity drive to cut non-plan expenditure by 10 per cent, the Narendra Modi government has barred bureaucrats from travelling first class on overseas visits and have been asked to use video conferencing as much as possible.

With an aim to restrict fiscal deficit to 4.1 per cent of GDP in 2014-15, the Finance Ministry has barred officials from holding meetings in five-star hotels and put a freeze on fresh appointments and filling up posts lying vacant for over one year.

“While officers are entitled to various classes of air travel depending on seniority, utmost economy would need to be observed while exercising the choice keeping the limitations of budget in mind. However, there would no bookings in the first class,” said the office memorandum. The facility of Video Conferencing, it said, “may be used effectively”.

The Finance Ministry said purchase of new vehicles to meet operational requirement of defence forces, Paramilitary forces and security organisations are permitted but ban on purchase of any other vehicles would continue.

Such measures are intended at promoting fiscal discipline, without restricting the operational efficiency of the government. In the context of the current fiscal situation, there is a need to continue to rationalise expenditure and optimise available resources,” it said. Full story...

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Facebook is deliberately censoring alternative media, pushing globalist agenda...

Increasingly, Facebook is being accused of censoring material that users post on the world's largest social media website, prompting outrage and confusion from many who see hypocrisy in the site's rules.

In one recent instance, as reported by InfoWars.com, multiple users of the site have complained that they were not able to share some YouTube videos from the alternative media site, as well as others (including Natural News):

When attempting to share videos by Infowars and by social commentators E.T. Williams and Mark Dice, Facebook users received error messages preventing them from sharing the videos even though they were able to share videos from other, non-political YouTube channels.

"I clicked on 'Share' at the bottom of YouTube as usual to post [the latest Alex Jones Show] to my Facebook profile to share it with various people from back home [in England,]" Infowars viewer Chris C. said. "Normally it goes straight through, but Facebook gave this error message stating 'bad content' or something of that nature."

He added that he has never encountered this issue before. "Never, ever, ever, ever," he said. "That was why I was so shocked when it happened." Full story...

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Just a Japanese girl drummer...

Switzerland's shame: The children used as cheap farm labour...

David Gogniat heard a loud knock on the door. There were two policemen.

"I heard them shouting and realised something was wrong. I looked out and saw that my mother had pushed the policemen down the stairs," he says.

"She then came back in and slammed the door. The next day three policemen came. One held my mother and the other took me with them."

At the age of eight, he was in effect kidnapped and taken away to a farm. To this day he has no idea why.

For the first years of his life, he and his older brother and sisters lived alone with their mother. They were poor, but his childhood was happy until one day in 1946, when he came home from school to find his siblings had disappeared.

A year later it was his turn. Full story...

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Number of global billionaires has doubled since the financial crisis...

The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners.

According to Oxfam, the world’s rich are getting richer, leaving hundreds of millions of people facing a life “trapped in poverty” as global “inequality spirals out of control”.

The report found that the number of billionaires in the world has more than doubled to 1,646 since the financial crisis of 2009, and Oxfam says is evidence that the benefits of a return to economic growth are “not being shared with the vast majority”.

The influential report is supported by Bank of England chief economist Andrew Haldane and Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz. It notes that since 2009 one million women have died in childcare due to lack of basic health care, and that 57m children are currently missing out on any form of education.

The charity, which published the report as part of its new Even It Up campaign, also found that the richest 85 people in the world have the same wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population. Full story...

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A Canadian teacher in South Korea who was raped is now facing jail time because she reported the crime to police...

It is a warning for young people going overseas to teach English, not to expect the same rights often taken for granted here.

A Canadian woman sexually assaulted in South Korea has learned she could face charges for testifying in court.

The woman — whose identity is being protected — was attacked last year.

The man charged was known to police — accused in a number of other attacks.

She was followed walking home from work, that part, caught on video surveillance.

“And then he came inside my apartment building and sexually assaulted me.”

She reported it to police.

 “They caught him, soon after, in a different neighbourhood, preying on a different female.” Full story...

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Revealed: US mail subjected to widespread government surveillance program...

Questions are being asked of the United States Postal Service after the release of an audit confirming that roughly 49,000 pieces of mail were monitored by the agency during the last fiscal year.

The New York Time’s Ron Nixon reported on Monday this week that a 2014 audit of the USPS’s little-known surveillance program showed that nearly 50,000 pieces of mail were scrutinized during a 12-month span upon the request of authorities using a tactic called a “mail cover.”

But while the USPS green-lighted tens of thousands of these requests made by law enforcement agencies in the last year pursuant to criminal and national security investigations, the Times reported, the protocols in place for authorizing such scans are reportedly ripe with flaws.

“Insufficient controls,” as identified in the audit, “could hinder the Postal Inspection Service’s ability to conduct effective investigations, lead to public concerns over privacy of mail and harm the Postal Service’s brand,” Nixon quoted from the report.

 Additionally, the audit found that "responsible personnel did not always handle and process" those requests on par with the agency’s established rules. Full story...

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Ron Paul: Switzerland gold referendum a healthy conversation...

Although it is unlikely Switzerland’s gold referendum will pass, one U.S. politician said the country is embarking on a “healthy conversation” regarding the role of its national bank.

Former U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, who is a strong proponent of gold-backed currencies, said in an exclusive interview with Kitco News the fact a referendum on gold reserves was triggered in Switzerland demonstrates that people around the globe are starting to question the reliability of fiat currencies.

On Nov. 30 Swiss voters will vote on three initiatives as part of the gold referendum: whether or not the Swiss National Bank should increase its gold reserves to 20%, that the central bank should stop selling its precious metals and that all its gold should be held within the country.

“People are starting to talk about gold more and they should,” he said. “(The referendum) is one more step in the direction of proving that paper money, fiat money, money created by politician out of thin air to subsidize big government and monetize debt is going to end.” Full story...

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North Korea executes members of Workers' Party for watching South Korean soap operas...

As many as 50 senior members of the North Korean government and military have been publicly executed so far this year, according to South Korea's intelligence agency.

The victims of the purges - which the National Intelligence Service believes are continuing - include 10 members of the ruling Workers' Party who were executed by firing squad for watching South Korean soap operas, bribery or womanising.

Many of the officials singled out by Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, were reportedly close to Jang Song-thaek, Mr Kim's uncle, who was arrested in December 2013 and executed for a series of crimes against the state.

 The ongoing elimination of Jang's allies indicates that Mr Kim is getting rid of potential sources of opposition and building his own power base, although executing a member of the party for watching a South Korean television show hints at a trumped-up charge. Full story...

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India man arrested for gay sex after wife catches him on spycam...

A man has been arrested for gay sex in the Indian city of Bangalore after his wife caught him with another man on hidden camera.

The man, identified as John F, 32, a test engineer at financial services department of Ipsos, was charged under section 377 of the penal code, which punishes gay sex with up to life in jail.

He had entered an arranged marriage to dentist Dr Lisa, not her real name, 31, in November last year but refused to consummate their marriage and slept in a separate room. ‘It was the pink lip gloss that first roused my suspicions.

He used it every day without fail, and if it smudged even a little, he would touch it up immediately.

His mannerisms and interests were also feminine, and whenever I questioned him, he always gave dodgy responses,’ Lisa told the Bangalore Mirror. Full story...

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Five years after war, Sri Lanka refugees reluctant to leave India...

Nearly 70 percent of refugees who fled to India during Sri Lanka's civil war prefer to stay rather than return, even though the conflict in their homeland has ended, according to a survey by a university in Mumbai.

More than 130,000 Sri Lankans are estimated to have sought refuge in southern India during the 26-year conflict between separatist Tamil Tiger rebels and government forces.

Since the war ended in May 2009, Sri Lanka has pumped $6 billion into development of the former war zone in the counltry's north, and some refugees have left India to return home.

Yet around 100,000 refugees remain in India - many living in poor conditions with restricted freedom of movement in 111 government-run camps across Tamil Nadu state.

The survey by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) found that 67 percent of the 368 respondents wanted to stay in India, citing insecurity and a lack of jobs as primary factors for not returning home. Full story...

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Medical mystery: The boy who won't eat or drink...

Most children would jump at the chance to pig out on hamburgers, ice cream, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, tacos and candy. But not Landon Jones. For about a year, the 12-year-old Iowa boy has had a mysterious illness. He never feels hunger or thirst and therefore refuses to eat and drink. The disorder is so rare that doctors think he may be the only person in the world with the condition, according to the Des Moines Register, which first reported his story.

The strange symptoms developed without warning a year ago. Landon awoke the morning of Oct. 14, 2013 complaining of dizziness and extreme chest congestion. A scan of his chest indicated he had a bacterial infection in his left lung, which was treated successfully.

But then he stopped eating.

Over the past year, Landon and his family have visited doctors in five cities, from their local pediatrician in Waterloo, Iowa, to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. He's been subjected to countless tests, including a spinal tap, encephalograms (brain scans) and psychiatric evaluation, and has been evaluated for a host of medical conditions, including digestive problems and possible eating disorders.

One by one, other illnesses have been ruled out, but Landon still has not received a diagnosis. The physicians he's visited have been baffled by his condition and at a loss for how best to treat him. More + video...

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Kerala: Mass kissing drive leaves cops high and dry...

To express freedom of love in the wake of attack against a coffee shop in Kozhikode last week by BJP youth wing activists alleging immoral activities, a group youngsters have decided to observe a ‘kiss day’ in port city Kochi on November 2 putting the police in a bind.

Though the police have denied official permission to hold a massive kissing drive they said they would intervene if it crosses limit of permissible decency and create a law and order issue. A Kerala version of ‘pink chaddi’ (after Mangalore attack on young couples women had sent pink inner wear to Sree Ram Sena leader Pramod Muthalik) campaign the drive has evoked massive response from netizens and two actors have supported it.

Organisers of the event have invited couple to assemble at idyllic Marine Drive Sunday evening to express their love as well as angst against moral policing. What really triggered such a campaign is the recent attack against a coffee shop in Kozhikode (north Kerala) _ after a news channel came out with a story alleging immoral activities in the hotel Yuva Morcha (BJP youth outfit) activists had attacked the eatery and vandalized it badly.

The organizers said their aim was not to target any political party or group but to draw attention to the fact that it was not acceptable to intrude into some one’s privacy citing flimsy moral reasons. “Criminalization of affection and love is really bad. The attack against the coffee shop was just a trigger. Sadly this tendency is growing everywhere,” said S Rahul, one of the organizers. Full story...

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Around 100,000 Hungarians rally for democracy as internet tax hits nerve...

About 100,000 Hungarians rallied on Tuesday night to protest at a planned tax on data traffic and the broader course of Prime Minister Viktor Orban's government they saw as undermining democracy and relations with European Union peers.

It was by far the largest protest since his center-right government took power in 2010 and pursued moves to redefine many walks of life, drawing accusations of creeping authoritarianism, although it was re-elected by a landslide this year.

Orban's government has imposed special taxes on the banking, retail, energy and telecommunications sectors to keep the budget deficit in check, jeopardizing profits in some parts of the economy and unnerving international investors.

The Internet data levy idea was first floated in the 2015 tax code submitted to the Central European country's parliament last week, triggering objections from Internet service providers and users who felt it was anti-democratic. Full story...

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90% of journalists' murderers across the world get away with it...

Governments are falling short in their efforts to combat impunity in the killing of journalists, with 90% of murderers walking free, according to a report issued by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).

It says the lack of justice in the hundreds of murders of journalists around the world continues to bedevil press freedom.

The report, The road to justice: breaking the cycle of impunity in the killing of journalists, argues that governments have failed to take meaningful action to reduce the high rates of targeted violence and impunity against journalists.

In the past 10 years, 370 journalists have been murdered in direct retaliation for their work. The vast majority were local journalists reporting on corruption, crime, human rights, politics or war. But there are very, very few arrests or convictions of perpetrators.

Elisabeth Witchel, the report's lead author and CPJ's consultant on its global campaign against impunity, says: "The unchecked, unsolved murders of journalists who seek to inform their societies and the world is one of the greatest threats to press freedom today. Full story...

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Air New Zealand's Hobbit-theme safety video...

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Silicon Valley will destroy your job: Amazon, Facebook and our sick new economy...

An Amazon River legend says that its famous pink river dolphins sometimes become shapeshifters and assume human form to seduce unwary travelers and lure them to a magical city called Encante. The catch is that this city is underwater. Once you’ve been there you can never go back home.

That’s the thing about myths: There’s always a catch.

Our society runs on a digital myth, which says that the technology-based economy is different, special and somehow not subject to the principles of mathematics and human nature that govern the rest of our lives. This myth tells us there is something called a “sharing economy,” a wealth-creating phenomenon with no downsides and no human costs. It tells us that we use services like Google and Facebook for “free.” And it insists that corporations like Amazon have unlocked magical technology secrets that allow them to bring the wonders of the world to our doorstep through something like prestidigitation.

The Amazon River myth has one major advantage over the Amazon Corp.’s: The dolphins may not be magical, but they are precious and beautiful and very real. The tech myth is nothing but illusions, all the way down. Full story...

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India names tax dodgers with Swiss accounts...

The right-wing Bharatiya Janata Party, which took power in May, earlier accused the previous Congress government of failing to get tough on the issue that has become a political lightning rod.

The government filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court on Monday naming seven business people, men and women, including Pradip Burman — a former director of the well-known Dabur food group — for allegedly hiding money abroad, along with a Goa mining company, Timblo Private Ltd.

The governing party has been under pressure to identify offenders following petitions from activists including prominent lawyer Subramanian Swamy, who has waged an aggressive campaign to prosecute wealthy people with undeclared funds offshore.

The government said in its affidavit it was "committed to disclose the names of persons holding illegal money . . . following due process of law".

 BJP spokesman Sambit Patra called disclosure of the names an "historic day". Full story...

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Rapist cannot escape justice by marrying victim, says Indian judge...

A Delhi man who drugged, raped and then blackmailed a woman to marry him has been convicted by a judge who warned that marriage could not be used to escape justice.

The perpetrator drugged the woman, before filming the assault on his mobile phone while she was unconcious. He later used the video footage to force her to have sex with a friend while his father watched, the court heard. The victim was forced to marry him and warned she would be killed if she did not keep quiet.

The perpetrator's claim that his victim was in love with him and married him freely was rejected by the judge, in a ruling which highlighted the practice of victims marrying their rapists to avoid shame and dishonour.

 Despite the nationwide outcry following the gang rape and murder of a Delhi student on a bus in December 2012, victims continue to be blamed for the crime and their families fear the shame will jeopardise their chances of finding a husband, and their sibling's chances. Full story...

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Rwanda suspends BBC broadcasts over genocide film...

Rwanda has suspended BBC broadcasts in the Kinyarwanda language with immediate effect because of a film questioning official accounts of the 1994 genocide.

The Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Agency (Rura) said it had received complaints from the public of incitement, hatred, revisionism and genocide denial.

At least 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus died in the genocide.

The BBC has denied that any part of the programme constitutes a "denial of the genocide against the Tutsi".

On Wednesday, Rwandan MPs approved a resolution calling on the government to ban the BBC and to charge the documentary-makers with genocide denial, which is a crime in the country. Full story...

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A mother in the U.K. has made legal history after winning a High Court case that allowed her to make the decision to end the life of her severely disabled 12-year-old daughter...

When Nancy Fitzmaurice was born blind and suffering from hydrocphalus, meningitis and septicaemia the outcome for her was a life in which she would be unable to talk, walk, eat or even drink.

That life was to be spent at London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital where she would receive round-the-clock care, while being fed, watered and medicated through a tube. Not a quality of life that any parent dreams of for their child.

Nancy’s devoted mother, Charlotte - who gave up work to dedicate her life to the care of Nancy – discovered the limits of how much suffering she could let her daughter endure after routine surgery left 12-year-old Nancy screaming in agony.

Charlotte decided enough was enough, and made a choice no parent should ever have to make. After 12 heartbreaking years of watching her daughter suffer, she took the only course of action she felt was left to them both: to end her child’s life. Full story...

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Drugged up Pakistan...




Google worker busted by FBI for threatening to distribute naked photos of a Texas college student...

A Google worker has been arrested by the FBI for allegedly threatening to distribute naked photos of a Texas college student unless the woman e-mailed him additional explicit photos and videos, The Smoking Gun has learned.

Nicholas Rotundo, 23, was busted earlier this month for cyberstalking the collegian, who was warned that her photos would be uploaded to a revenge porn site if she did not cooperate. Rotundo was subsequently named in a three-count felony indictment.

Rotundo, investigators allege, extracted the naked photos from the victim by posing as a researcher conducting a “breast perception study” for which she was purportedly to be paid $8500. A search of one of Rotundo’s Gmail accounts yielded “nude photographs of multiple females” and evidence that he victimized two other women in the online scam, according to a sealed criminal complaint obtained by TSG.

Pictured above, Rotundo works at Google’s Mountain View, California headquarters, where he is an Internal Technology resident. The two-year program teaches how to “support and scale Google’s technology from our corporate infrastructure to end users,” and can result in a permanent position with the tech giant. Full story...

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Jakarta International School: Teachers and staff at top international school accused of raping students as young as five...

Cleaners gang-raping children in school toilets; teachers sexually abusing students while the kindergarten principal videotapes; secret rooms; dodgy office renovations; school cover-ups. This, some parents allege, is what has been taking place at one of Asia’s most renowned schools, the Jakarta International School (JIS), in the past year.

The row started in March, when the parents of a then five year-old boy asked for an emergency meeting with the head of school. Their son had been raped by several cleaning employees in one of the school bathrooms, they claimed.

Thomas and Ria (their names have been changed) say they first suspected something was wrong with their son when he started having nightmares in which he screamed “Please don’t hurt me, please let me go.” He was also aggressive, he wet himself at school, “because he was scared to go to the toilets.” His mother says she discovered bruises on her son’s stomach and anus. He eventually told them what had happened.

Their son underwent medical examination – the forensics report, which was shown to The Independent by the school shows he had contracted proctitis, an infection of the rectum. An anoscopy also revealed pus and lesions.

The school says they had agreed with the parents to keep the case confidential to protect the child, and were surprised when Thomas and Ria shared the details with other parents, and then organised a press conference, to reveal what had happened. Thomas and Ria say they weren’t satisfied with the response of school officials, who they say had advised them against reporting the assault to the police. Full story...

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