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US: TSA Agent Threatens Woman With Defamation, Demands $500k For Calling Intrusive Search 'Rape'

tsa
© NA

Amy Alkon is an advice columnist and blogger who is just one of many people who has had a horrifying and traumatizing experience going through airport security lately. After being pulled aside for an "enhanced" search, she found the process to be so invasive and so in violation of her own rights that she was left sobbing. She wrote about the experience on her blog, noting that she didn't think the search was just "invasive" in the emotional sense, but flat out physically invasive:

Nearing the end of this violation, I sobbed even louder as the woman, four times, stuck the side of her gloved hand INTO my vagina, through my pants. Between my labia. She really got up there. Four times. Back right and left, and front right and left. In my vagina. Between my labia. I was shocked -- utterly unprepared for how she got the side of her hand up there. It was government-sanctioned sexual assault.

Upon leaving, still sobbing, I yelled to the woman, "You raped me." And I took her name to see if I could file sexual assault charges on my return. This woman, and all of those who support this system deserve no less than this sort of unpleasant experience, and from all of us.

Mr. Potato

Tony Hayward, Ex-British Petroleum CEO, Set To Return To Oil Industry

Tony Hayward
© AP

London- Tony Hayward, who stepped down as BP (BP.L) boss in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, will imminently seal his return to the oil industry, by buying into Turkey's Genel Enerji, in a deal valuing the target at around $4 billion, a source close to the matter said on Tuesday.

Vallares, an acquisition vehicle established by Hayward and financier Nat Rothschild, has agreed in principle to a tie-up with Genel Enerji, which owns oil fields in the semi-autonomous Kurdish region of Iraq, and is expected to announce a deal in the coming days, the source said.

The exact terms of the deal are unclear but it is expected to net Hayward and his Vallares co-founders tens of millions of pounds.

Bizarro Earth

Chevron makes oil find in Gulf of Mexico

oil, turtle
© AP

San Ramon, California-- U.S. supermajor Chevron announced a discovery at a deep-water prospect in the Gulf of Mexico left idled after last year's disastrous oil spill.

Washington placed a moratorium on oil and natural gas exploration in the Gulf of Mexico after the Deepwater Horizon rig caught fire and sank in April 2010, killing 11 workers and causing one of the worst oil spills in the history of the industry.

Chevron began drilling its Moccasin well in March 2010 but stopped when the moratorium was enacted after the spill. Operations resumed this March and the supermajor said it encountered more than 380 net feet of pay during renewed drilling.

"The Moccasin discovery underscores the importance of the deep water Gulf of Mexico as a source of domestic energy for the United States and as a focus area for Chevron's worldwide exploration portfolio," Chevron Vice Chairman George Kirkland said in a statement.

Chevron drilled more than 31,000 feet deep in water depths of 6,759 feet, about 1,700 deeper than the Deepwater Horizon well.

The company said it was evaluating well results to determine the exact volume of the resource.


Bug

Corn Rootworm Overcomes Monsanto's GMO Seed

western corn rootworm
© Marlin E. Rice

Surprise, surprise, Monsanto's genetically modified seed is being overcome by the insects evolutionary arsenal. A new study by Iowa State University entomologist Aaron Gassmann, has found that western corn rootworms have developed resistance to an insect killing protein, derived from Bacillus thuringiensis, also known as Bt, the insecticide in Monsanto's gentically modified corn plant.

The rise of a new super bug is raising concerns amongst farmers that have been using Monsanto's GMO seed, that they will have to use pesticides to combat this evolutionary development. Monsanot released the seed back in 2003, and are stating that their customers are still getting their monies worth in using this GMO seed.

The evolutionary path of the corn rootworm's adaption to Monsanto's gentically modified seed is being passed down to the rootworm's offspring. Insects have adapted and have overcome Monsanto's GMO technolgy within a short period of time.

Handcuffs

US, Indiana: Shirtless Samurai 'Cuckoo for Coco Puffs'

Image
© Lake County Police
Indiana police recently arrested a sword-carrying samurai who allegedly claimed he was "Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs."
A man was found walking along the inner shoulder of I-65 in Indiana on Sunday afternoon around 2:30 p.m. He was not far from his abandoned white Toyota, which was still in the middle lane of the interstate. Indiana Police State Trooper Ricky Rayner found the car, and then he quickly spotted the man.

"The man was marching like a drum major, holding the sword, moving it up and down in rhythm with his marching cadence," State Police said.

Nicknamed the "Shirtless Samurai," the man was wearing only a pair of shorts and slip-on shoes, carrying a 35-inch samurai sword. He was later identified as 42-year-old Cicero resident Bryon Womack.

Handcuffs

US, California: FBI Arrests Prominent Democratic Campaign Treasurer

Image
© unknown
Democrat campaign treasurer Kinde Durkee has been arrested by the FBI on mail fraud charges
A prominent Democratic campaign treasurer who works for federal, state and O.C. lawmakers including U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Rep. Loretta Sanchez and state legislators Lou Correa and Jose Solorio has been arrested by the FBI on suspicion of mail fraud, The Orange County Register has learned.

U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman Thom Mrozek confirmed Saturday afternoon that Kinde Durkee of Burbank-based Durkee and Associates, was arrested by the FBI on a criminal complaint filed by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Sacramento. Special Agent Steve Dupre of the bureau's Sacramento office said she was arrested in connection with her position as a campaign treasurer.

State Sen. Lou Correa told the Register on Saturday afternoon that he was called by the FBI late Friday night and told that Durkee had been arrested and that he is a likely victim along with "many, many other victims." The Santa Ana Democrat said he believes he has lost "hundreds of thousands of dollars" in campaign funds.

People

US: Illinois to lay off thousands of state workers by end of week




A decision made by Gov. Pat Quinn may leave thousands of state workers without a job by the end of the week.

The cuts are coming in the face of a budget deficit that doesn't leave enough money to pay the workers, the governor says. Quinn also plans to close a prison, juvenile detention center and homes for the mentally ill.

If no cuts are made, several agencies will run out of money by spring, Quinn says.

"We can't spend money we don't have," Quinn said Tuesday.

Pistol

US Gun Sales 'on Track to Surpass 15 Million' this Year

Gun show
© Getty Images
Attendees check out new models at a January gun show in Las Vegas. Reasons given in the surge in sales range from paranoia about the economy to certainty President Obama will be draconian in his approach to firearms in a second term.
Rick Perry's emergence as the front runner for the Republican Presidential nomination would seem like a coup for the gun industry. The Texas governor's enthusiasm for firearms rivals Yosemite Sam's. He has an A+ rating from the Texas State Rifle Association and packs a laser-sighted Ruger pistol when he jogs. Last year, he famously shot a coyote that threatened his dog during a run. To commemorate his act of valor, the manufacturer, Sturm, Ruger & Co., produced a lightweight, limited-edition "Coyote Special" with the words "A True Texan" emblazoned on the barrel. Collectors snapped them up. Perry would be as ardent a champion of gun rights as has ever occupied the White House.

And yet he still may not do as much for the industry as Barack Obama already has. In the time since he took office, gun sales have soared. The government doesn't track individual sales. But the FBI criminal background check required to purchase a gun is considered a reasonable proxy, and these have hit record numbers each year Obama has been in office. This year, they're on track to surpass 15 million for the first time.

Family

US: One Sperm Donor, 150 Offspring

Image
© David Ahntholz for The New York Times
Offspring Ryan Kramer, 20, of Pasadena, Calif., is the child of a donor.
Cynthia Daily and her partner used a sperm donor to conceive a baby seven years ago, and they hoped that one day their son would get to know some of his half siblings - an extended family of sorts for modern times.

So Ms. Daily searched a Web-based registry for other children fathered by the same donor and helped to create an online group to track them. Over the years, she watched the number of children in her son's group grow.

And grow.

Today there are 150 children, all conceived with sperm from one donor, in this group of half siblings, and more are on the way. "It's wild when we see them all together - they all look alike," said Ms. Daily, 48, a social worker in the Washington area who sometimes vacations with other families in her son's group.

Cow Skull

US: EPA Declares Hay a Pollutant in Effort to Antagonize Small and Mid-Sized U.S. Cattle Feeders

winter hay
© Mike Callicrate
Billings, Montana - During his presentation on the status of the nation's new country-of-origin labeling (COOL) law, and on behalf of the R-CALF USA COOL Committee, R-CALF USA member and Kansas cattle feeder Mike Callicrate was asked a non-COOL question that set convention goers on their heels during the 12th Annual R-CALF USA Convention held August 26-27 in Rapid City, S.D.

"Has the Environmental Protection Agency declared hay a pollutant?" an audience member asked. Callicrate responded affirmatively and explained that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently initiated a formal enforcement action against his Kansas feedlot for, among other things, failure to store his hay in a pollution containment zone. "Now that EPA has declared hay a pollutant, every farmer and rancher that stores hay, or that leaves a broken hay bale in the field is potentially violating EPA rules and subject to an EPA enforcement action," Callicrate said. "How far are we going to let this agency go before we stand up and do something about it?"

Callicrate is permitted to handle 12,000 cattle at a time in his feedlot, which is considered a small to mid-sized feedlot in an industry now dominated by mega-feedlots such as those owned by the world's largest beef packer - JBS-Brazil - with a one-time capacity of over 900,000 cattle; or the other mega-feedlot that also feeds hundreds of thousands of cattle at a time and is owned by the nation's second-largest beef packer - Cargill; or the other handful of mega feedlots with capacities of hundreds of thousands of cattle such as those owned by Cactus Feeders, Inc. and Friona Industries.