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Gender: Male
Current location: Boseong
Member since: Fri Jan 30, 2004, 05:44 AM
Number of posts: 21,776

Journal Archives

This is supposed to be cat shaming? Epic Fail

Looks to me like both an award and a warning to any dog that might be foolhardy enough to enter this cat's realm

More from the Matt Shea files: GPS trackers, a 'provisional government' and a hunt for moles


Last year, at the Marble religious compound in northern Stevens County, Shea described a brewing civil war in the United States, telling a crowd: “Liberty must be kept by force.” He later acknowledged writing a manifesto titled “Biblical Basis for War.” And recently, “Bundyville,” a podcast about right-wing extremism in the American West, explored Shea’s connections to the racist Christian Identity movement and dominionism, the idea that Christians have a God-given right to govern.

Already, Shea and some of his closest supporters have made physical preparations for a holy war, one that would help them establish their long-envisioned 51st state, their Redoubt, their Christian homeland. Leaked emails published this week reveal that Shea has had close ties with a group that conducted “patriotic and biblical training on war for young men.”

In addition to running “background checks” on liberal activists and supporting military-style training for boys and young men, Shea has in recent years sought to purchase GPS tracking devices, compiled dossiers on local progressive leaders and kept a blacklist of suspected informants in his network. He also plotted to establish a “provisional government” in the event of a collapse and boasted about his efforts to “turn back the tide” of those who practice Islam in the United States.

Shea also distributed a list that purported to include the names and phone numbers of every law enforcement officer working in Washington state, saying it would help to “confirm or deny legitimacy” of investigators who made contact. He and his associates used email servers and messaging apps designed with extra layers of encryption in an attempt to shield their identities. He signed messages “V” or “V/B” – short for his code name, Verum Bellator, which is Latin for “truth warrior.”


Hurricanes lead to more aggressive spiders, study says


In regions of the United States and Mexico that are prone to hurricanes, aggressive spiders are evolving to survive and ride out the storm.

When hurricanes rage along the Gulf of Mexico or charge up the East Coast, they can reshape an entire habitat in a short time. The winds destroy trees and spread debris for miles, putting new pressure on the creatures living in these environments.


The team monitored Subtropical Storm Alberto and Hurricanes Florence and Michael during the 2018 hurricane season. They tried to anticipate the systems' trajectories and study areas that included 240 female spider colonies, comparing them with areas where spider colonies were not affected by such storms.

The researchers returned to the sites hit by the storms 48 hours later. About 75% of the colonies survived the initial storm strikes.


The researchers determined that after a storm passed, the colonies that aggressively pursued food and resources were able to produce more egg cases. The spiderlings also had a better chance of surviving into early winter.

In areas that weren't hit by storms, docile colonies thrived.

Just in case you thought the Epstein saga couldn't get more weird...

Mariel Colón Miró, one of the attorneys for Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman, was one of the witnesses on his new will
This was reported by the NY Daily News and confirmed by Ms Miro

Draw for Round 2 of AFC World Cup Qualifying

The draw for Round-2 of the 2020 Men's World Cup for Asia is in.

Group A: China PR, Syria, Philippines, Maldives, Guam

Group B: Australia, Jordan, Chinese Taipei, Kuwait, Nepal

Group C: IR Iran, Iraq, Bahrain, Hong Kong, Cambodia

Group D: Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, Palestine, Yemen, Singapore

Group E: Bangladesh, Oman, India, Afghanistan, Qatar

Group F: Japan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Myanmar, Mongolia

Group G: United Arab Emirates, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia

Group H: Korea Republic, Lebanon, Korea DPR, Turkmenistan, Sri Lanka

My analysis:
It's hard to argue against China and Japan getting cushy draws; Guam, Maldive, the Philippines are terrible and Syria is marginally okay. China is a decent team, but hardly a first tier team in Asia. They may struggle a bit against Syria, which is a testimony to how weak the bracket is, then how good China or Syria are.

In Group F it is literally Japan and some other countries. Tajikistan will likely finish 2nd, though Kyrgyz Republic could take it as well. Japan coasts in this bracket. The only question is by how many goals does Japan pummel each team before they get bored?

Group H is the Group of Death for this draw. It has three legitimate teams in the bracket: Korea, Korea and Lebanon. While none of these teams will ever be mistaken for Germany, France and Argentina, South Korea has qualified for every world cup since the World Cup in Mexico, North Korea, while not qualifying in the last cup did attend in South Africa and Lebanon is always competitive, often surviving into the final 12

5 Stories from Europe You May Have Missed + 1

1. Russian Plane Hits Birds, Makes Emergency Landing In Cornfield

The crew of a Ural Airlines aircraft is being hailed as heroes after making an emergency landing in a farmer's field near Moscow with no fatalities among the 233 people on board.

The airline said on August 15 that one of its Airbus A321 aircraft made an emergency landing in a cornfield near Zhukovsky airport on the outskirts of Moscow after birds were sucked into its engines.

The Health Ministry said 23 people had suffered injuries, but that nobody had been killed in the accident.


2. Norway halts Amazon fund donation in dispute with Brazil

Norway has followed Germany in suspending donations to the Brazilian government’s Amazon Fund after a surge in deforestation in the South American rainforest. The move has triggered a caustic attack from the country’s rightwing president.


After weeks of tense negotiations with Norway and Germany, the Bolsonaro government unilaterally closed the Amazon Fund’s steering committee on Thursday. The fund has been central to international efforts to curb deforestation although its impact is contested.


According to Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research, the government agency that monitors deforestation, the rate increased by 278% in the year to July, resulting in the destruction of about 870 square miles.


3. Italy government feud: PM Conte slams minister Salvini as 'disloyal'

Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte accused interior minister Matteo Salvini of “disloyalty” and an “obsession with blocking immigration” in an open letter published on social media — intensifying the feud within the ruling coalition.

Conte, who does not belong to any party, used the case of a migrant rescue boat refused entry to Italy’s ports by Salvini to settle scores with the Lega Nord leader who had called a motion of no-confidence in the government.

Salvini said last week that his right-wing party would no longer support the current alliance with the Five-Star Movement.


5-Star and the opposition Democratic Party (PD) have stalled any debate in the senate of the no-confidence motion and many politicians are now discussing forming their own coalition that would sideline Salvini.


4. Greenland: rising temperatures risk releasing atomic waste from Cold War US base

There are fears nuclear waste buried underneath the ice in Greenland could escape because of rising global temperatures.

Former US army base ‘Camp Century’ was built in the late 1950s as an Arctic research laboratory.

Accommodating up to 200 soldiers, the Cold War era-bunker in northwestern Greenland was also home to an atomic reactor and a top secret project to test and deploy nuclear missiles.

Code named ‘Project Iceworm’, when the US finally decommissioned the base in 1967, large amounts of nuclear waste, raw sewage and other toxic material were left behind.


5. Uzbek President Shuts Down Notorious 'House Of Torture" Prison

Uzbek President Shavkat Mirzioyev has ordered the closure of the Jaslyk prison in the Central Asian country's northwest, an institution that has long been associated with torture and human rights abuses.

The Interior Ministry called the presidential order to shut down the infamous facility "a truly historic decision that was made to boost the effectiveness of the correctional impact on convicts...as well to promote the country's positive image abroad."

Situated in the Autonomous Republic of Karakalpakstan, which is known for its severely cold winters and hot, dry summers, Jaslyk earned nicknames such as "The House of Torture" and "The Place of No Return."


The prison was opened by former authoritarian President Islam Karimov at a former Soviet military base to incarcerate thousands of people arrested following deadly 1999 bombings in the capital, Tashkent, that authorities blamed on "religious extremists."


+1- Unflagging Protest: Belarus's Opposition Inspired By A Pensioner And Her Outlawed Banner

MINSK -- Holding a bamboo pole with a red-striped white banner, the banned flag of the first independent Belarusian state, she faces a line of black-clad police officers staring down from a flight of stone steps.

The 2006 photograph transformed Nina Bahinskaya, now a pensioner and great-grandmother, into a celebrity of sorts among activists -- an endangered species in Belarus, ruled since 1994 by President Alyaksandr Lukashenka, who tolerates little dissent in the nation of some 9.5 million.

"Today, some may laugh at it, some may dismiss it, and some may not pay any attention at all. But in the future, that image will still be there," said Zmitser Dashkevich, leader of the opposition group Malady Front (Youth Front). "That photograph of Nina Bahinskaya with the flag will be part of Belarus's recent history. Not all these political parties, but Nina Bahinskaya with the flag in her hand."


Bahinskaya rarely heads out for demonstrations without her flag, the white-red-white symbol of the short-lived Belarusian People's Republic, which existed for about a year in 1918-19. It was also the official flag of modern Belarus for the country's first five years of independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.


"Up until 2014, they would confiscate flags, then they started to snap them in two and take them away. But from 2016, the coffers were empty, I guess, so they stopped confiscating the flags, and started issuing fines instead," Bahinskaya said with a smile, holding a tiny first republic flag that she says rarely leaves her side.


Bahinskaya brandishes Belarus's illegal flag in Minsk in 2016

Nina Bahinskaya facing down a line of policemen in 2006

Boys With Brides: Afghanistan's Untold Dilemma Of Underage Marriages

Mohammad Wali was just 12 years old when his widowed mother began arranging his marriage to a 24-year-old woman from their village in Ghazni Province.

"I don't want to be married," the young Afghan boy is said to have pleaded with his mother. "I just want to play soccer and cricket. I want to go to school."

But his mother insisted on the marriage to ensure that she and Mohammad Wali's two teenage sisters would not become street beggars -- a possibility she feared because of local inheritance customs for widows who don't have any male heir.


"You must get married," she is said to have begged her son. "You must marry soon and you must have a son of your own or we could become destitute, without any property, and your sisters will have no say about anything that happens to them."


Hussaini says UNICEF has recently been registering about 200 Afghan boys each month, aged 11 to 17, as they return to Herat Province from Iran where they've being working to help support their families.


Death toll from typhoon in eastern China rises to 28

The death toll from a major typhoon in eastern China rose to 28 on Sunday, with 20 people missing, state media reported, after torrential rains forced more than one million people to evacuate and triggered a landslide.

Typhoon Lekima made landfall early on Saturday in the eastern province of Zhejiang with winds gusting to 187 km (116 miles) per hour, causing travel chaos with thousands of flights cancelled and rail operations suspended.


The deadly landslide occurred about 130 km north of the coastal city of Wenzhou, when a natural dam collapsed in an area deluged with 160 mm (6.3 inches) of rain within three hours, according to state broadcaster CCTV.

State media reports showed rescuers wading in waist-high waters to evacuate people from their homes, while the Ministry of Emergency Management said that more than one million people in the financial hub of Shanghai, as well as Zhejiang and Jiangsu provinces, have been evacuated.


Norway mosque shooting: One injured, suspect in custody

One person has been injured in a shooting inside a mosque in Norway, police said on Saturday, adding that a suspect had been apprehended.

The suspected shooter at the al-Noor Islamic Centre near the country's capital was described as "a young white man" who appeared to have acted alone, the police added.


"The man carried two shotgun-like weapons and a pistol. He broke through a glass door and fired shots," he said.

The shooter, who wore body armour and a helmet, was overpowered by members of the mosque before police arrived, Mushtaq added.


5 Stories from Europe You May Not Have Seen

1. Greece scraps law banning police from university campuses
Greece’s newly elected, centre-right government has ignored leftists’ protests to overturn a law that had prohibited police from entering universities.

In a stormy debate preceding Thursday’s vote, the prime minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, insisted the old law – regarded as sacrosanct in a country that had once known military rule – had turned campuses into dens of criminality and no-go zones for police.


In recent years academics have been attacked on university sites, while drug addicts have been seen shooting up in broad daylight on campuses.

The law that has barred security forces from universities for close to 40 years was drafted in response to the decision of Greece’s colonels to send a tank crashing through the gates of Athens’ Polytechnic in 1973 – a move that resulted in the deaths of 23 students.


2. How a hashtag looks set to offer LGBTI people a #MeToo moment in Poland

Ten days ago, approaching the main city square where Białystok’s first ever LGBTI pride march was due to start, I was met with a scene of chaos


For many Poles, the level of violence witnessed at the Pride March in Białystok came as a shock but it did not come from nowhere. Over the past few months, the Polish government and pro-government media have been increasingly spreading homophobic and transphobic propaganda and using homophobia as a rallying poing ahead of upcoming general elections.


Two days ago, a young man called Tomasz tweeted a message suggesting that LGBTI people post photos of themselves “in school or work showing that we are the normal people whom you might meet anywhere: in the shop, on the street, the office”. He added the hashtag #jestemLGBT ("I am LGBT”) and for the last two days, it has been trending at the No.1 spot on Polish twitter, with thousands expressing solidarity by tweeting and re-tweeting.

Poles have used the hashtag on social media to show the people they are behind the labels: students, waitresses, firemen, doctors or just people you sit next to on a bus or pass in the street. “I'm fed up with the way the LGBTI community in Poland are dehumanised” tweeted Alexandra, a student. ”I am just a normal person. I get up, go to work, come home, make dinner for me and my girlfriend, go to a class, then go to bed." Tens of thousands of others are joining in, offering solidarity and support by tweeting #jestemzLGBT (I am with LGBTI) expressing solidarity with LGBTI people.


3. Bosnia To Start Tracking Migrant Injuries After Alleged Beatings By Croatian Police

Authorities in northwestern Bosnia-Herzegovina say they will start recording injuries sustained by migrants after 18 of them were allegedly beaten by Croatian police near the two countries' border.

Una Sana Canton’s Health Minister Nermina Cemalovic made the announcement to RFE/RL on August 8, a day after 14 Pakistanis and four Iraqis were found with signs of physical trauma while trying to illegally cross the border into EU-member Croatia.

Bosnian media and a Croatian refugee assistance center said they were beaten by Croatian police, an allegation that Zagreb authorities deny.


4. Two dead in explosion at military testing site in northern Russia: defence ministry

Two people died in an explosion at a military testing site in northern Russia on Thursday, according to RIA news agency, citing the ministry of defence.

Six people were injured in the incident near Severodvinsk in the Arkhangelsk region in the Russian Arctic, it added.


It was the second accident involving the Russian military this week.

Massive explosions at a Russian military ammunition depot in Siberia injured at least eight people and prompted the evacuation of thousands Monday.


5. Pro-LGBT Coca-Cola adverts spark boycott calls in Hungary

Advertisements by Coca-Cola relating to a popular music festival in Hungary that promote gay acceptance have prompted a boycott call from a senior member of the conservative ruling party.

The posters are timed for the week-long Sziget festival – that takes the theme of “Love Revolution” and starts on Wednesday in Budapest – and show gay people and couples smiling with slogans such as “zero sugar, zero prejudice”.

That has annoyed some supporters of Viktor Orbán’s nationalist Fidesz party, which opposes same-sex marriage.


Tamás Dombos, an advocate with the Háttér gay rights group, said the government was homophobic but also aware of society’s growing acceptance of gay lifestyles.

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