Society's ChildS


English Defence League leader Tommy Robinson sentenced to 18 months in prison for mortgage fraud

© David LeveneThe head of Quilliam Foundation, Maajid Nawaz, (left) and Tommy Robinson.
The 31-year-old, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, had previously admitted two counts of the offence at a hearing in November.

The controversial far-right figure was accused of conspiring with others to obtain a mortgage by misrepresentation from the Abbey and Halifax banks.

In an apparent comment on the sentencing at St Albans Crown Court, the Robinson took to Twitter to say, "This is a complete stitch-up".

He also posted a picture of a meal of meat, mashed potatoes and chips, with the message "one last feed", and then "see u all in 18 months".

Robinson has previously served time in jail for using someone else's passport to travel to the United States.

He was given 10 months at Southwark Crown Court in January 2013 after admitting possession of a false identity document with improper intention.


Florida GOP candidate defends call to hang Obama by comparing him to George Zimmerman

Joshua Black
© Raw StoryJoshua Black calls for the execution of Obama
Republican candidate for Florida's state house defended his call for the hanging of President Barack Obama. According to Tampa's Fox Channel 13, Joshua Black persisted in his insistence that Obama is a war criminal and a traitor who should be executed by "whatever method is applicable for the situation."

Black tweeted on Monday that "It's time to arrest" Obama and "hang him high."

Since then, Black has been denounced by other Florida Republicans and questioned by the Secret Service. Nonetheless, the only thing he regrets about the tweet is the means of killing the president.

"I know that we don't use hanging as a method of execution here in the U.S. anymore, so be it," Black told Channel 13 in a Walmart parking lot interview. "Whatever method is applicable for the situation, I just want justice to be served."


Canadians buying potassium iodide in bulk over fears of Fukushima radiation

Potassium iodide pills
© Reuters / Yuriko Nakao

Health officials in the coastal Canadian province of British Columbia are cautioning residents not to try and qualm fears of radioactive contamination by ingesting mass quantities of potassium iodide.

Journalist Dan Fumano of BC's The Province newspaper wrote this week that potassium iodide pills have been flying off the shelves of area drug stores after reports published on the internet advised people that illnesses brought on by nuclear radiation can be remedied by taking regular doses of the inorganic compound.

The British Columbians buying those pills, Fumano wrote, are largely fearful that nuclear waste leaked into the Pacific Ocean three years ago by the destruction of the Fukushima power plant across the pond in Japan is washing up on their shores.

But while potassium iodide does indeed possess its fair share of positive qualities, experts say ingesting those pills is unnecessary and could cause lead to potentially dangerous overdoses.


Sir Bob Geldof backs Russell Brand's call for political revolution

© The IndependentThe musician echoed the comedian’s sentiments, warning that the current democratic system “may not be viable for much longer”
If anyone was set to back Russell Brand's impassioned call for political revolution, as outlined in an essay for the New Statesman in November 2013, we'd have put money on Sir Bob Geldof doing the honours.

The Boomtown Rats frontman and political activist echoed the comedian's sentiments, warning that the current democratic system "may not be viable for much longer". He also praised Brand for his "articulacy and expressing the anger of the moment".

"We have to change and it needs to be in the context of how we live now rather than with some old-hat political ideal," Geldof told the Huffington Post UK.

He went on to condemn capitalism as a failure. Banks, he says, have been allowed to go "out of control", while pure human greed has led to the invention of "completely spurious" financial products.

"They ceased to [give money to others] and gave it to themselves through fraud, outright international global gangsterism," he claimed.

"That's what it was," he continued on the subject of the recent banking crisis. "Mispricing of products, fraud. Mis-selling of products, fraud. Fixing the interbank lending rate.

"Fraud. It was fraud on an unprecedented scale! They sucked billions out of the world economy, destroying individuals, companies and countries.

"Russell [Brand] is completely right. That model cannot sustain us as we saw, it bankrupted Greece, almost Italy, almost France and almost Ireland. It just can't work."


Make no mistake: You are an American debt slave

debt slavery
© unknown
"It is the debtor that is ruined by hard times." - Rutherford B. Hayes

You are a debt slave. Don't believe it? 43% of all American families spend more than they earn each year. According to the Federal Reserve, and I'll describe the fictional premise upon which they stand momentarily, the average American household is at least $75,000 in debt. Overall, consumer debt in America has increased by a whopping 1700% since 1971. Approximately two-thirds of all American students graduate from college with student loan debt. But what of this debt? Is it real anyway?
"The rich will strive to establish their dominion and enslave the rest. They always did. They always will... They will have the same effect here as elsewhere, if we do not, by (the power of) government, keep them in their proper spheres."- Governor Morris, co-author of the U.S. Constitution in 1787

2 + 2 = 4

Key findings about growing religious hostilities around the world

Pew Research Center has been tracking religious restrictions and hostilities around the world since 2007. Our new report found that a third of the 198 countries and territories studied in 2012 had a high or very high level of social hostilities involving religion, the highest share in the six years of the study. These hostilities - defined in the study as acts of religious hostility by private individuals, organizations or groups in society - increased in every major region of the world except the Americas. Here are some top findings:


Ghost ship full of cannibal rats 'could be heading for Britain'

The abandoned Lyubov Orlova may be bringing hundreds of disease-ridden cannibal rats to the UK after cutting adrift in the North Atlantic a year ago
A ghost ship infested with hundreds of cannibalistic rats may end up beaching on Britain's coastline, experts have warned.

The abandoned Lyubov Orlova has been missing since it cut adrift while being towed from Canada nearly a year ago.

Coastguards fear the 40-year-old liner was driven across the North Atlantic by high winds and is now lurking worryingly close to the UK shoreline.

Searchers say there are likely to be hundreds, if not thousands, of disease-ridden rats on board with no source of food except each other.


Best of the Web: Marijuana for the Masses: Legalized cannabis and why the government wants us to go to pot

"By this time the soma had begun to work. Eyes shone, cheeks were flushed,
the inner light of universal benevolence broke out on every face
© NSDUHDaily or almost daily marijuana use in the past year and past month among persons aged 12 or older: 2002-2012
in happy, friendly smiles." - Aldous Huxley's
Brave New World, 1932

On Jan. 1, Colorado legalized the sale of recreational marijuana. In 2012, Washington State legalized marijuana; the State will begin permitting pot shops this spring. Alaska may vote on a marijuana ballot measure in August, while advocates are working for legalized pot in Oregon, Arizona and Massachusetts.

A public announcement from Colorado should say: "Be calm. Feel free to become distracted. Do not focus on how miserable you are or the fact that for the first time in 70 years, middle-class job opportunities have seized up." Then they could ask: "Are you ready for some football?"


Arizona autistic girl arrested for strangling 43-year-old man during 'consensual sex act'

Woman handcuffed
©, Matthew BenoitSex with a 16 year old autistic, schizophrenic girl is "consensual".
A 16-year-old autistic Arizona girl is in custody for second-degree murder after she admitted strangling a 43-year-old man during what police said was a "consensual sex act."

According to The Arizona Republic, Glendale police were called to a home at around 5:45 p.m. on Saturday and found Jason Ash dead in the apartment.

Ash had a cord around his neck and several cuts on his body.

The mother told officers that she had left her 16-year-old daughter alone in the home with the girl's 43-year-old "friend."

Bizarro Earth

India reels from another horrific gang rape case in wave of sexual violence

Tribal elders ordered a 20-year-old woman to be raped in public by up to 12 men for an 'unauthorised' relationship, police say

© Louis Dowse/Demotix/CorbisA protest against sexual violence in Delhi.
A 20-year-old woman has been raped in public by as many as 12 men on the orders of tribal elders in a village in eastern India, according to local police.

The attack, in Birbhum district about 120 miles from Kolkata, was a punishment for an "unauthorised" relationship with a man from another village and the woman's subsequent failure to pay a 50,000 rupee (£490) fine, local media reports said.

"According to the woman, the [village head] summoned her and her [lover] on Monday and detained them through the day and night. After her family said they could not pay the fine, the [head] allegedly ordered the mass rape on Tuesday," police superintendant C Sudhakar told The Hindustan Times newspaper.

Eleven men have been arrested so far, including the village head. The victim remains in hospital. She has told local reporters she lost count of her attackers, who appear to have included several of her neighbours.

India has been hit by a wave of sexual violence - particularly gang rapes - in recent years. Last week a 51-year-old tourist in Delhi was raped by at least five men while walking back to her hotel. Several other similar attacks on foreigners had hit headlines over previous months.