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Tue, 31 Jan 2023
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Financial Despair leads Greek mother and son to suicide plunge

Vathy Square

The apartment block in Vathy Square from which the mother and son plunged to their death.
A 60-year-old man and his 90-year-old mother jumped off the roof of their apartment block in Vathy Square, near central Athens, early on Thursday in a double suicide that appeared to have been prompted by financial woes.

No suicide note was found but a short despair-filled text was uploaded onto a poem-sharing website late on Wednesday by a man called Antonis Perris. "I don't see any way out. I have property but no cash at all, so what am I going to do about food?" he wrote, adding that his mother had Alzheimer's while he had a terminal illness. "I don't have many days left, I am very sick," he wrote. The note is followed by a string of comments posted afterward by readers wishing him well and then notes of sorrow as of Thursday morning.

Evil Rays

Media Manipulation: Fox News Makes People Dumb

FOX News
© AFP / Brendan Smialowski
After a study published last year labeled viewers of Fox News as grossly misinformed, the researchers who conducted the poll have expanded their work and now confirm, again, that the network's audience might want to consider changing the channel.

Researchers at Fairleigh Dickinson University conducted a study last year that yielded some inarguably unsurprising information about Fox News' viewership. At the time, researchers concluded that, based off of a study that sampled residents of New Jersey, people that only watch Fox News are less informed on current events than people that don't watch cable news at all. Now only months later, the school's researchers have published their finding of a similar study that calls on a sample of participants from coast-to-coast and, according to the results, confirm that their earlier report wasn't a fluke.

According to the latest study, Americans who watch only Fox News to learn about current events are indeed less informed than most everyone else.

The report reveals that, on average, American's are able to correctly answer 1.8 out of 4 questions on international news and 1.6 of 5 questions when quizzed on domestic issues. For those that disregard the television for taking in daily newscasts, they averaged 1.22 answers correctly.

Fox viewers, of course, were a different story.


Nuclear sub burns at Portsmouth shipyard: cause of fire under investigation

© Ioanna Raptis/iraptis@seacoastonline.com
Smoke and steam rise Wednesday night from the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard as a fire burns on the USS Miami, a nuclear-powered submarine.
A fire on a $900 million nuclear submarine stationed at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard caused injuries to six people and was still burning early this morning.

The cause of the fire in the nuclear-powered USS Miami attack submarine remained unknown as of an 11:30 p.m. news conference, said Capt. Bryant Fuller, commander of the shipyard.

"While the fire is not out, the situation is improving," Fuller said.

Shipyard firefighters were first called to the dry docks at 5:41 p.m. The fire started in the forward compartment, which Fuller said consists of primarily living quarters and command and control spaces. All nonessential personnel were ordered to evacuate, officials said.

Just after 10 p.m., the fire aboard the submarine, docked at Dry Dock 2, went to four alarms and fire dispatchers were describing the fire as "moderate."

Red Flag

Belfast City Council is Torturing "Lennox" a Disabled Child's Therapy Dog

Dog Expert Victoria Stilwell "Shocked" At Lennox's Health Condition

© Save Lennox

Lennox has been locked in this inhumane Belfast Council Contracted Kennel, without any visible source of water, surrounded by his own feces, and kept in isolation without any visits from his family, for TWO YEARS.
Victoria Stilwell, celebrity dog trainer and presenter of hit TV show "It's Me Or The Dog" has openly spoken out in support of Lennox since hearing of his plight in 2010. After extensively studying all Lennox assessment videos Victoria also submitted her own report as an expert dog behaviorist to the Northern Ireland courts stating that Lennox poses no danger to public and that he clearly demonstrates amazing self control even while put under stressful circumstances, however as we now know Judge Rodgers in the September 2011 appeal hearing decided to ignore all expert evidence presented to him from such experts as Sarah Fisher, Victoria Stilwell and past evidence held on record by David Ryan, instead Judge Rodgers accepted the non expert evidence from Peter Tallack a retired police dog handler who admits not having any behavioral expertise.

© Save Lennox
In the October 2011 edition of Victoria Stilwell's Positively Podcast the main topic was Lennox. In this edition Victoria spoke about many things regarding the Lennox case and she also expressed concern regarding Lennox's current skin condition after she had witnessed his poor fur condition and awful sores visible on his skin whilst she had been compiling her report from various assessment videos.

Lennox always had a slight skin condition and such was well controlled and treated by his family while at home and many people who know Lennox and had seen Lennox prior to his seizure by the Belfast City Council dog warden would not have been at all aware that he had a skin aliment due to the ongoing treatment and quality of care his family had been giving Lennox. Speaking to her co-host about Lennox's skin condition whilst in the so called care of Belfast City Council.

Life Preserver

Iran Navy Helps U.S. Ship Attacked by Pirates in Middle East

Iran's navy helped a U.S.-flagged cargo ship that was attacked by pirates off the United Arab Emirates, according to the vessel's owner, Maersk Line Ltd.

The Iranian navy was the first to respond to the initial distress call from the Maersk Texas, Kevin Speers, senior director of marketing at Maersk Line, said by phone today. The vessel was attacked by several skiffs and armed guards on board returned fire, the company said in an earlier statement.

The incident happened at about noon northeast of Fujairah, the biggest port in the Middle East for refueling oil tankers, Maersk said. Iran's navy provided guidance to the crew of the Maersk Texas by radio, Speers said, declining to comment further pending a debriefing.


Frequent and severe sexual violence at women's prison

© Unknown
Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women in Albama is facing complaints of sexual misconduct by guards.
Sexual misconduct by male correctional staff toward inmates at Alabama's Tutwiler Prison for Women is "commonplace" and has resulted in numerous women becoming pregnant while incarcerated, a complaint filed with the U.S. Department of Justice alleges.

Equal Justice Initiative, a private nonprofit organization, filed the complaint about the all-female prison in Wetumpka, Ala., Tuesday after receiving dozens of claims of sexual misconduct involving male staff between 2004 and 2011.

In interviews with more than 50 women incarcerated at the prison, EJI said it discovered "frequent and severe officer-on-inmate sexual violence," ranging from women being coerced into performing sexual favors in exchange for contraband goods to rape by a male correctional staff member while another male officer served as a lookout.

Even in instances in which abuse was confirmed, perpetrators received little more than a slap on the wrist, EJI Executive Director Bryan Stevenson told msnbc.com.

Comment: In a sick and twisted society, somehow, the victim is always at fault.


How Lego Toys Led to the Arrest of a High-Flying Silicon Valley Executive

© The Associated Press
Thomas Langenbach, a Silicon Valley technology executive, is facing charges after authorities say he changed the bar codes on Lego toys at a Target store to buy them for less.
US, California - A Silicon Valley software executive has been charged with four felony counts of burglary after allegedly printing his own discount bar codes and pasting them on Lego toys he would later resell online.

Thomas Langenbach, 46, declined Tuesday to enter a plea when he was formally charged. A hearing was scheduled for June 20.

"In his house, we found hundreds of boxes of unopened Lego sets," Mountain View police spokesman Liz Wylie told the San Jose Mercury News.

Langenbach and his partner Maggie Hoang lived in a $1.8 million house on Sudan Lane in San Carlos, Calif., near the Palo Alto offices of German software giant SAP (Systems, Applications and Products), where he had worked since 1988.

Langenbach allegedly sold 2,100 Lego toys on eBay over the last 13 months for $30,000, police said.

"I don't think it's money," said Supervising Deputy District Attorney Cindy Hendrickson, who is prosecuting Langenbach.

"Money might have been a part of what brought him pleasure, but I think all indications are there's something way more complex here," Hendrickson was quoted by the San Jose Mercury News.

"Remember, he's going out and paying for these things. This is something that he did in a painstaking way, and it took time, it took effort and it took expense. I don't think you do that just for the money. There had to be something else. Beating the system? An element of compulsion?"


14-Year-Old German Boy Arrested after Opening Fire in School

© Reuters
Police gather at a local sports ground where an eighth-grader is hiding in Memmingen
German police arrested an armed 14-year-old boy after he opened fire in his school with a handgun, threatening to "shoot them all".

The boy was arrested in the Bavarian town of Memmingen following a stand-off with dozens of heavily armed police officers during which he fired at least 20 shots and threatened to shoot himself.

He had earlier caused panic at his school when he produced two pistols, telling one boy that if anything bothered him today he would "shoot them all". He also threatened a teacher and fired a shot into the ground.

As news of the gunman spread through the school around 280 teachers and pupils locked themselves in classrooms, and waited for the police.

The incident triggered painful memories of the 2009 Winnenden massacre in Germany when 17-year-old Tim Kretschmer shot 16 children dead at his old school before turning his gun on himself.


'May God help the new president': Egyptians head to polls in historic vote

© The Associated Press/Hasan Jamali
Egyptians line up to vote in the presidential election Wednesday, May 23, 2012, outside a polling station in Cairo, Egypt.
Cairo, Egypt - More than 15 months after autocratic leader Hosni Mubarak's ouster, Egyptians streamed to polling stations Wednesday to freely choose a president for the first time in generations. Waiting hours in line, some debated to the last minute over their vote in a historic election pitting old regime figures against ascending Islamists.

A sense of amazement at having a choice pervaded the crowds in line, along with fervent expectation over where a new leader will take a country that has been in turmoil ever since its ruler for nearly 30 years was toppled by mass protests.

Some backed Mubarak-era veterans, believing they can bring stability after months of rising crime, a crumbling economy and bloody riots. Others were horrified by the thought, believing the "feloul" - or "remnants" of the regime - will keep Egypt locked in dictatorship and thwart democracy.

Islamists, particularly the Muslim Brotherhood, saw their chance to lead a country where they were repressed for decades and to implement their version of Islamic law. Their critics recoiled, fearing theocracy.

"You can't tell me, 'Vote for this or else you're a sinner!"' Wael Ramadan argued with another man in line at a polling station in the impoverished Cairo neighbourhood of Basateen. "We never said that," protested the man. "Yes, you did," Ramadan shot back.

"The revolution changed a lot. Good things and bad things," Ramadan, a 40-year-old employee at a mobile phone company, said afterward. "The good thing is all this freedom. We are here and putting up with the trouble of waiting in line for electing a president. My vote matters. It is now a right ... Now we want a president that has a vision."

A field of 13 candidates is running in the voting Wednesday and Thursday. The two-day first run is not expected to produce an outright winner, so a runoff between the two top vote-getters will be held June 16-17. The winner will be announced June 21. Around 50 million people are eligible to vote.


Police State: Montreal Police Enforce Controversial New Laws to Arrest More Than 100 Protesters

© Reuters / /Brett Gundlock
Montreal police march during a protest against student tuition hikes on the 100th day of Quebec's student strikes, in downtown Montreal May 22, 2012.
Canada, Montreal - Montreal police brought the hammer down on student demonstrators Tuesday night, enforcing a controversial law that brought tens of thousands into the streets in a protest earlier in the day that drew international support.

By the end of a cat-and-mouse operation that marked the fourth straight night of clashes, police spokesman Simon Delorme said that at least 100 people had been arrested and two police officers had been injured.

Four other people were taken to hospital but the extent of their injuries was not immediately known.

It is believed to be the first time Bill 78 and the city's new anti-mask bylaw were used by police although Sherbrooke police used the provincial law on Monday to round up 36 protesters in that city.

While the atmosphere during the day in Montreal was almost carnival-like, the mood in the evening soon turned as dark as the night that enveloped the march.

Projectiles were thrown at police and gusts of pepper spray tinged the air as riot equipped police sent people scattering.