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Tue, 14 Jul 2020
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UK police arrest Gary Glitter

Gary Glitter
© Associated Press/Alastair Grant
In this Jan, 11, 2000 file photo, British performer Gary Glitter, during a press conference in London. Police investigating the sex abuse scandal surrounding late BBC children's television host Jimmy Savile have arrested pop star Gary Glitter in connection with the case, British media said Sunday, Oct. 28, 2012.
London - Police investigating child sex abuse allegations against the late BBC television host Jimmy Savile arrested former glam rock star and convicted sex offender Gary Glitter on Sunday, British media reported, raising further questions about whether Savile was at the center of a broader pedophile ring.

Police would not directly identify the suspect arrested Sunday, but media including the BBC and Press Association reported he was the 68-year-old Glitter.

The musician, whose real name is Paul Gadd, made it big with the crowd-pleasing hit "Rock & Roll (Part 2)," a mostly instrumental anthem that has been a staple at American sporting events, thanks to its catchy "hey" chorus. But he fell into disgrace after being convicted on child abuse charges in Vietnam.

Sunday's arrest was the first in a widening scandal over Savile's alleged sex crimes. Hundreds of potential victims have come forward since police began the investigation into sex abuse allegations against Savile, a much-loved children's TV presenter and disc jockey who died at the age of 84 last year.

Most have alleged abuse by Savile, but some said they were abused by Savile and others. Most claimed they were assaulted in their early teens.

The scandal has raised questions about whether the BBC, the publicly funded and trusted broadcaster, had ignored crimes it suspected over several decades. Its executives have apologized and vowed to uncover the true scale of the alleged abuse.

Eggs Fried

"No Monti Day": Tens of thousands protest against austerity in Rome

Tens of thousands of people marched through Rome in a "No Monti Day" on Saturday, some throwing eggs and spraying graffiti to protest against austerity measures introduced by Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti's government.


Anti-austerity protesters urge Spain government to resign in Madrid rally

Spain protests

"If you want to win... fight without rest."
Thousands of anti-austerity demonstrators marched in the Spanish capital Saturday calling for the conservative government to resign because of its severe budget cuts.

"They don't represent us", "More education fewer police", demonstrators shouted as dozens of police vehicles followed the march to near the parliament building which was cordoned off.

A large banner read "No to the debt budget".

Demonstrators held a minute's silence, sitting down and holding their arms up in the air before they shouted "resign" with their fists clenched.

Arrow Down

Pageant parents exhibit signs of princess by proxy

Beauty Pageants
© Jaimie Duplass / Shutterstock
Although Honey Boo Boo has captured the imagination of the American audience with her boisterous personality, she isn't the only little girl on the beauty pageant circuit. Thousands of children compete each year, and a new study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry takes a critical look at these pageants.

Martina M. Cartwright, adjunct professor at the University of Arizona and a registered dietitian, suggests that these high-glitz child pageants are often more about the parents and their needs and have little to do with the children at all. The study also suggests that participating in these events can actually be harmful to children's health and self-esteem.

These pageants have been popularized by The Learning Channel's reality show Toddlers and Tiaras and its spin-off, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. As part of her research, Cartwright attended two live tapings of Toddlers and Tiaras. Cartwright claims that some pageant parents exhibit "princess by proxy," a unique form of "achievement by proxy distortion." Adults with this condition are driven primarily by the social or financial gains earned by their child's accomplishments, regardless of risk involved for the child.

The glitz pageant is a $5 billion dollar industry in America, which was first introduced to many through the death of 5-year-old beauty queen Jon-Benet Ramsey in 1995. Cartwright focused her research on these types of pageants, where contestants wear heavy makeup and ornate costumes, sometimes costing more than $1,500. Cartwright estimates that along with entry fees, photo and other expenses such as wigs, fake tans and artificial teeth known as flippers, the average cost of participating in a single contest runs between $3,000 and $5,000.

Glitz pageants have prizes that include cash awards, crowns, trips, puppies and sometimes even "bit parts" in movies. These prizes and the potential for fame and fortune may contribute to "achievement by proxy distortion" in parents, according to Cartwright.

Heart - Black

Psychopathy's Double Edge


The traumatic and terrifying effects of psychopaths are visible on our streets and on the faces of people all around us, yet most of us are blithely unaware of their existence.
Over a 28-year-old single-malt scotch at the Scientific Study of Psychopathy's biennial bash in Montreal in 2011, I asked Bob Hare, "When you look around you at modern-day society, do you think, in general, that we're becoming more psychopathic?"

The eminent criminal psychologist and creator of the widely used Psychopathy Checklist paused before answering. "I think, in general, yes, society is becoming more psychopathic," he said. "I mean, there's stuff going on nowadays that we wouldn't have seen 20, even 10 years ago. Kids are becoming anesthetized to normal sexual behavior by early exposure to pornography on the Internet. Rent-a-friend sites are getting more popular on the Web, because folks are either too busy or too techy to make real ones. ... The recent hike in female criminality is particularly revealing. And don't even get me started on Wall Street."

He's got a point.

In Japan in 2011, a 17-year-old boy parted with one of his own kidneys so he could go out and buy an iPad. In China, following an incident in which a 2-year-old baby was left stranded in the middle of a marketplace and run over, not once but twice, as passersby went casually about their business, an appalled electorate has petitioned the government to pass a good-Samaritan law to prevent such a thing from happening again.

And the new millennium has seemingly ushered in a wave of corporate criminality like no other. Investment scams, conflicts of interest, lapses of judgment, and those evergreen entrepreneurial party tricks of good old fraud and embezzlement are now utterly unprecedented in magnitude. Who's to blame? In an issue of the Journal of Business Ethics, Clive R. Boddy, a former professor at the Nottingham Business School, contends that it's psychopaths, pure and simple, who are at the root of all the trouble.

Comment: While the above article is very interesting and informative and provides fascinating scientific proof of the fact that psychopaths are very much a different type of human than the vast majority of humans, the following paragraph is a rather uniformed and callous attempt to rationalise away the disastrous effects that psychopaths have had, and continue to have, on human society.
"But if society really is becoming more psychopathic, it's not all doom and gloom. In the right context, certain psychopathic characteristics can actually be very constructive. A neurosurgeon I spoke with (who rated high on the psychopathic spectrum) described the mind-set he enters before taking on a difficult operation as "an intoxication that sharpens rather than dulls the senses." In fact, in any kind of crisis, the most effective individuals are often those who stay calm - who are able to respond to the exigencies of the moment while at the same time maintaining the requisite degree of detachment."
Dr. Robert Hare has stated that psychopaths, who may constitute up to 6% of the population, may be responsible for 50% of crimes. This is hardly something positive. The author also misses the fact that when the ability to be "cool and calm" in a crisis is NOT a choice but rather a state of being, any possible positives far outweigh the negatives when you consider that the apathy of the 'calm and focused' neurosurgeon above would just as likely result in serious malpractice. In short, psychopathy has not "double edge", psychopathic traits are in no way positive to human society. The current dire state of our global society is a testament to that fact.

Black Cat

Psychopath on the loose: University of Montevallo cat deaths 'creepy and cruel'

© Martin J. Reed
The "Becoming" statue at the University of Montevallo, shown in this picture on Friday, Oct. 26, 2012, is the site of one of the three dead cats discovered earlier this month that had been killed in a potentially horrific way.
The several stray cats are noticeably absent that once roamed the University of Montevallo campus among the brick buildings and tall trees that are shedding their fall leaves.

"They're gone," sophomore Taylor Fritts, 19, said while walking to class this afternoon. She remembered seeing six of seven cats, "like distinct ones you could recognize."

"The others, I know some students have been capturing them and taking them home so nothing will happen to them," Fritts said.

Whether their disappearance involves this month's discovery of three cats on campus that had been killed in a potentially disturbing manner is unknown, but some students and staff worry about the animal deaths happening so close to where they live, learn and work.

"Somebody on this campus has a problem and they need to be checked out," said Andronikia Ward, a sophomore.

Eye 1

Chinese man sues wife over ugly child - and wins $120,000

© RT
Before and after: Feng's wife spent over $100,000 in plastic surgery to modify her appearance
Many people are used to returning merchandise if they find that it doesn't match their needs. But one Chinese man went a step further, and returned his wife - getting $120,000 in a court settlement.

­Jian Feng, living in Northern China, has filed for divorce from his wife after he found their newborn child to be "incredibly ugly," arguing that his wife tricked him into the union by appearing to be a beautiful woman when she was instead ugly.

"I married my wife out of love, but as soon as we had our first daughter, we began having marital issues. Our daughter was incredibly ugly, to the point where it horrified me," reports gossipwelove.com

Bad Guys

Shocking documentary lifts the lid on how Ku Klux Klan is still strong in Mississippi

A series of documentaries has laid bare the shocking truth about the Ku Klux Klan which remains very much in existence.

In them members of the Klan shed light on their rituals and beliefs and their frightening pledge to achieve racial segregation at any cost.

Shrouded in secrecy, the Klan rarely opens its doors to outsiders, enacting centuries-old rituals in remote rural locations.

© ABC News
Members of the Mississippi Klan engage in the burning of a giant cross.
The KKK and its racist ways is often considered to be a relic of the civil-war era, one better off forgotten at that.

But the short films, aired on Abc's Nightline, tell otherwise, featuring groups in Mississippi and Virginia.

Many members hid their faces and withheld their names for fear of retribution in mainstream society.

'You don't know who I am,' one man said. 'You could think the world of me, and yet if you see me in this hood and knew who I was, your whole thoughts could change.'

The latest group to be featured is the Mississippi White Nights of the Ku Klux Klan, the klavern made famous by the film Mississippi Burning.


Greedy U.S. billionaire spends record $31M in ballot fight to block new bridge to Canada

© Postmedia News/The Canadian Press
85-year-old billionaire, Matty Moroun has run an aggressive campaign urging Detroit voters to reject a new bridge linking them to Windsor, Ontario. Moroun owns the would-be bridge's main competition: the Ambassador Bridge.
Ambassador Bridge owner Manuel (Matty) Moroun has spent more than $31 million on his ballot proposal to force a referendum on a new publicly owned bridge to Canada, setting a record for the most money spent on one side of a ballot proposal in Michigan, according to campaign finance reports filed today.

Moroun's ballot committee, the People Should Decide, reported today that Moroun's companies have contributed $26.7 million to the ballot initiative since July 20. Before that, he and his companies had poured $4.7 million into the effort. As of today, the reports filed document only about $20.4 million of what the committee has spent, mostly on TV ads.

"It's pretty stunning," said Rich Robinson, executive director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network. "This has been a pretty expensive project."

Black Cat 2

Walmart labor abuses come back to haunt as Black Friday walkout looms

© Jonathan Alcorn/Reuters/File
Walmart workers on strike walk a picket line during a protest over unsafe working conditions and poor wages outside a Walmart store in Pico Rivera, Calif., earlier this month. Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, is facing a class action lawsuit alleging violation of laws regulating payment and scheduling of temporary workers. The allegations come just as the company is facing a potential walkout on Black Friday, the busy shopping day after Thanksgiving.
Walmart has been hit with a class action lawsuit in the midst of a threatened employee walkout on Black Friday, one of the busiest, most profitable shopping days of the year. Will worker troubles have an impact, or is this old hat for Walmart?

Editor's note: This story has been updated to include a response from Wal-Mart Stores.

Walmart workers aren't happy, and they're letting their employer know it.

In the midst of worker strikes in several cities and the looming threat of a mass employee walkout on Black Friday (one of the busiest shopping days of the year), the world's largest retailer has been hit with a class action lawsuit affecting temporary workers in the Chicago area.

The filing accuses Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. and two temporary staffing agencies in the region - Labor Ready Midwest Inc. and QPS Employment Group, Inc. - of breaking minimum wage and overtime laws for temp workers by making them show up early and work through lunch breaks. The lawsuit also alleges that Walmart failed to pay contracted workers the requisite four hours minimum in wages.