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NY Mummy Smugglers Reveal Vast Antiquities Black Market

Mummy
© Dr. Michael Miyamoto
The illegal trafficking of mummies can destroy scientists' chances of learning about ancient Egyptians. Here, the mummy Maiherpri resides in a sarcophagus after undergoing a scan to reveal the prevalence of heart disease at the time.
The rescue of an ancient Egyptian mummy's sarcophagus this month from alleged smugglers in New York - the first time authorities say an international artifacts' smuggling ring was dismantled within the United States - sounds more like the plot of a movie than reality.

Amazingly, however, mummy smuggling not only still happens today, it was once so common that enough mummies were available to be ground up and sold as powder, archaeologists reveal.

"Mummy powder was something you could buy in pharmacies up to 1920, because people thought it was a type of medication," said Egyptologist Regine Schulz, curator of ancient art at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore.

Today's black market for mummy and other antiquities is in the billions of dollars, though exact numbers aren't known. Besides not having a clear bead on the breadth of trafficking in Egyptian artifacts, scientists and officials say it's often difficult to protect the precious artifacts as the Egyptian desert is so vast.

Phoenix

California, US: Mysterious 'explosion' that triggered Friday's fire under investigation

Image
© Bill Lavallie
A CAL FIRE helicopter and federal fire fighting helicopter scoop water from the Mokelumne River to battle Friday's blaze
CAL FIRE investigators are looking into the cause of a fire that torched more than 80 acres of Calaveras County and burned up to the very edge of Amador County, threatening to burn the Mokelumne River's scenic Middle Bar run. As the fire reached its most dangerous peak Friday afternoon, witnesses and reporters observed CAL FIRE law enforcement questioning at least one man about how the blaze started.

Fire crews were first alerted to the blaze around 4 p.m. Friday afternoon. Emergency responders arriving at Gwin Mine Road were quickly told by witnesses that an old, beat-up truck had just "exploded and caught fire," tossing red embers that quickly ignited the dry weeds and greasewood. At least two people - reportedly a man and a woman - were seen escaping the truck without injuries.

Heart - Black

Chinese couple sells kids to play games

Image
© Unknown
A Chinese couple sold their three children for cash to play video games, according to a local report.

Sanxiang City News newspaper (translated by ABC News, via VideoGamer.com) said the parents, both under 21, sold their children for money to fund playing online games at internet cafes.

In 2009, Li Lin and Li Juan sold their second child, a baby girl, for less than $500. They reportedly spent the money shortly after.

They then sold their first child, a boy, for about $4600. They sold their third child, also a boy, for the same amount.

Pistol

Norway gunman's father speaks out: 'He should have taken his own life'

Image
© Sipa Press/Rex Features
Jens Breivik, the father of Anders Behring Breivik, is protected by gendarmes at his home in Cournanel, south-west France.
Jens Breivik in state of shock over actions of Anders Behring Breivik and says he wishes his son had killed himself

Sitting in his villa in the French village of Cournanel - population 500 - surfing the internet for news of the bomb blast and massacre back home, retired Norwegian diplomat Jens Breivik had no idea that, for him, the worst was to come.

Today the country home near the Pyrenees in south-west France, where he had hoped to spend his retirement in peace, is surrounded by gendarmes "for his own protection".

And the most obscure details of his 70-year life were being picked over for clues to why his son, "a very ordinary boy", turned into an assassin. The truth is that Jens Breivik has no more idea than anyone else. Possibly less. Anders Breivik had never lived with his father and had not seen him since he was a teenager.

"I view this atrocity with absolute horror," his father told Norwegian journalists. "My condolences go out to all those who have suffered because of this. I am in a state of shock. I have not recovered."

Cult

Oslo massacre: British police called in over Breivik's claims he met 'mentor' in UK

Image
© Wolfgang Rattay/Reuters
A woman places flowers on a police car in Oslo after a memorial march to mourn the victims of Friday's bomb and shooting.
Europol ask for information because gunman wrote of visiting London for secret far-right gathering in 2002

Police attempting to piece together Anders Behring Breivik's links to far-right groups in the UK and Europe have written to Scotland Yard asking for more officers to help with the investigation.

A specialist unit has been set up in The Hague to trawl through a database of known high-risk, rightwing extremists and assist the Norwegian police as they examine evidence from Breivik's 1,500-page "manifesto" published online hours before he launched one of the worst mass killings in peacetime Europe.

Rob Wainwright, director of Europol, told the Guardian he had written to the Metropolitan police's new head of counter-terrorism, Cressida Dick, asking for more officers from Scotland Yard after Breivik boasted of his links to far-right groups in the UK.

Bell

The Dot Connector Magazine Issue 14 - 'The Corruption of Science' - Now Available!

The latest issue of The Dot Connector Magazine is now available. This issue deals with the Corruption of Science in all its forms. Don't miss out on this intensely informative magazine. Get your copy today!


Newspaper

India: 1-Year-Old Boy with 34 Fingers and Toes Breaks World Record

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© Solarpix
Extraordinary: Akshat Saxena has entered the Guinness Book of Records after being born in India with ten toes on each foot and seven fingers on each hand.
A one-year-old boy in India has broken a world record after being born with 34 fingers and toes.

Akshat Saxena had seven fingers on each hand and ten toes on each foot, according to a spokesman for Guinness World Records.

The child, from Uttar Pradesh in northern India, has since had a series of surgeries to amputate the excess digits. Akshat was born last year without thumbs so doctors are working to reconstruct these out of the fingers they have removed.

His mother Amrita Saxena said: 'I was so happy to see my baby as it was our first child.

'But later, when I saw his fingers, I was shocked and surprised.'

The condition is known as polydactyly, a genetic disorder which can be inherited and gives rise to excess digits.

Most commonly, the extra digits appear on the little finger side of the hand.

Mrs Saxena said it was a family friend who convinced them Akshat was extremely special.

Heart - Black

US, New York: Mom Faces Charges in Death of Disabled Daughter Found Dead Hours Before Family Wedding


The mom who Nassau cops say killed her disabled daughter in a depraved murder-suicide bid just hours before the excited 8-year-old was going to be a flower girl in her cousin's Long Island wedding on Saturday is now facing a second-degree manslaughter rap.

Veronica Cirella, 30, who remains hospitalized at Nassau County Medical Center, was found unconscious with an unknown item wrapped around her throat in the basement of the Plainview house she shared with her daughter Julie Cirella, cops said.

An 8-year-old disabled girl who was going to be the flower girl at her cousin's Long Island wedding yesterday was found dead just two hours before the ceremony, cops said.

The body of Julie Cirella, who has cerebral palsy, was found with no visible signs of trauma in the basement of the Plainview, L.I., home she shared with her mom, grandmother and five others, said Nassau County police Detective Lt. Kevin Smith.

Phoenix

UK: Police: House Fire that Killed Talented Golfer, 21, and His Sister, 8 Being Treated as 'Murder'

  • Thomas Sharkey had U.S. scholarship at top university
  • Sister had returned home from sleepover because she missed her family
  • Police say fire which left parents seriously injured was a 'deliberate act'
Image
© SWNS
Tragedy: Thomas Sharkey, 21, and his eight-year-old sister Bridget, who were killed in a house fire in Helensburgh, near Glasgow. Police have now launched a murder investigation

These are the first pictures of talented golfer Thomas Sharkey, 21, and his eight-year-old sister Bridget, who were killed in a house fire.

Police believe the blaze was started deliberately and have now launched a murder investigation into the siblings' deaths.

Their parents Angela, 46, and Tommy, 55, managed to escape the fire in Helensburgh, near Glasgow, after an off-duty policeman raised the alarm.

Attention

Peacock Syndrome - America's Fatal Disease



Peacock Syndrome_1
© The Burning Platform

"There will be, in the next generation or so, a pharmacological method of making people love their servitude, and producing dictatorship without tears, so to speak, producing a kind of painless concentration camp for entire societies, so that people will in fact have their liberties taken away from them, but will rather enjoy it, because they will be distracted from any desire to rebel by propaganda or brainwashing, or brainwashing enhanced by pharmacological methods. And this seems to be the final revolution." - Aldous Huxley


Peacock Syndrome_2
© The Burning Platform

Researchers at the University of Texas recently published a study about why men buy or lease flashy, extravagant, expensive cars like a gold plated Porsche Carrera GT. There conclusion was:
"Although showy spending is often perceived as wasteful, frivolous and even narcissistic, an evolutionary perspective suggests that blatant displays of resources may serve an important function, namely as a communication strategy designed to gain reproductive rewards."
To put that in laymen's terms, guys drive flashy expensive cars so they can get laid. Researcher Dr Vladas Griskevicius said: "The studies show that some men are like peacocks. They're the ones driving the bright colored sports car."

Lead author Dr Jill Sundie said: "This research suggests that conspicuous products, such as Porsches, can serve the same function for some men that large and brilliant feathers serve for peacocks." The male urge to merge with hot women led them to make fiscally irresponsible short term focused decisions. I think the researchers needed to broaden the scope of their study. Millions of Americans, men and women inclusive, have been infected with Peacock Syndrome. Millions of delusional Americans thought owning flashy things, living in the biggest McMansion, and driving a higher series BMW made them more attractive, more successful, and the most dazzling peacock in the zoo.

This is not an attribute specific to Americans, but a failing of all humans throughout history. Charles Mackay captured this human impulse in his 1841 book Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds:
"Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one."