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US: Birthday Spankings Spark Complaints, Investigation of School Principal

© Special to the Register
This picture of an implement used for birthday "whammies" at a Mount Vernon elementary school was included in a letter the principal sent to parents.
Linn County authorities are investigating complaints that a Mount Vernon elementary school principal used a padded hockey stick to deliver birthday spankings to his students.

Complaints about Principal Terry Eisenbarth's birthday "whammies" at Washington Elementary School also are under review by school board members, who met behind closed doors Wednesday night. About 70 people waited outside the meeting, parents said.

"I do not spank my kids at home on their birthdays," said Steve Wernimont, 44, who has three children. "That is not a celebration. It's being subservient to a dominating figure."

Wernimont and his husband, Ric Turnquist, said their three children, ages 9, 8, and 7, received birthday whammies last fall. The children didn't acknowledge the spankings until this month, when Wernimont said he heard about the practice and asked them about it.

Cow Skull

US: 'Only meat I'm eating is from animals I've killed myself': Mark Zuckerberg

© Justin Sullivan / Getty Images
The eyes of a hunter.
Last year Mark Zuckerberg set out to learn Chinese. Now he's determined to get in touch with his food. If the goats, lobsters and chickens of Silicon Valley aren't trembling, they should be.

When he's not too busy connecting people across the universe, Mark Zuckerberg is pursuing a new "personal challenge," as he calls it. "The only meat I'm eating is from animals I've killed myself," says the Facebook founder and CEO.

It's an odd dietary direction for the 27-year-old Internet billionaire, but since he has taken to killing goats, pigs and chickens, "I'm eating a lot healthier foods. And I've learned a lot about sustainable farming and raising of animals," he says. "It's easy to take the food we eat for granted when we can eat good things every day."

Zuckerberg's new goal came to light, not surprisingly, on Facebook. On May 4, Zuckerberg posted a note to the 847 friends on his private page: "I just killed a pig and a goat."

This drew a stream of emotional comments, which were a mixture of confusion, curiosity, and outright disgust. Zuckerberg posted his own comment in response, explaining that he fixates on a personal challenge each year (in 2009, he wore a tie every day), and this year's is about animals and meat.

Arrow Down

Canada: Ontario gas attendant dies trying to stop pump-and-run thief; police seek driver

With rising gas prices come more reports of drivers filling up and taking off without paying, but one driver may have more than just a theft on his conscience.

Police in Mississauga, Ont., say a gas station attendant has died of injuries suffered last week when he tried to stop a man from leaving without paying - a growing crime known as a "gas-and-dash."

Hashem Atifeh Rad, 62, of Mississauga, was working at a Petro-Canada station in the city west of Toronto on May 19 when a driver began filling up.

Police say the driver was seen stopping just before the gas station and covering up his licence plates.

It's alleged he made off with about $75 worth of gas while the attendant, who tried to confront him, was struck by the car and dragged into the street.

Evil Rays

10 Modern Methods of Mind Control

© Activist Post
The more one researches mind control, the more one will come to the conclusion that there is a coordinated script that has been in place for a very long time with the goal to turn the human race into non-thinking automatons. For as long as man has pursued power over the masses, mind control has been orchestrated by those who study human behavior in order to bend large populations to the will of a small "elite" group. Today, we have entered a perilous phase where mind control has taken on a physical, scientific dimension that threatens to become a permanent state if we do not become aware of the tools at the disposal of the technocratic dictatorship unfolding on a worldwide scale.

Modern mind control is both technological and psychological. Tests show that simply by exposing the methods of mind control, the effects can be reduced or eliminated, at least for mind control advertising and propaganda. More difficult to counter are the physical intrusions, which the military-industrial complex continues to develop and improve upon.


India: Mystery surrounds the Apollo aircraft crash in Delhi

Mystery surrounds the crash of the mini aircraft that crashed in Jawaharnagar locality in Faridabad near the Delhi airport yesterday night.

While initial reactions have blamed strong winds for smashing the nine-seater onto a house -- killing three women on the roof of the house -- air traffic records show that the plane lost an inordinate amount of altitude suddenly before the crash.

The plane, according to air traffic authorities, was flying at the usual cruising height of 11,000 feet (3.5 km) up in the air.

"We told the plane to keep at 11,000 feet as there were five other planes to touch down before it," pointed out a source in the airport.

While the plane should have circled at 11,000 feet, it started losing altitude and descended rapidly. "We have to see why it came down so rapidly.. whether there was wind at the high altitude or whether it got caught in the wind only after climbing down from the high altitude," the source pointed out.


US: Former street preacher sentenced to life in federal prison for kidnapping Elizabeth Smart

© George Frey/Getty Images
Elizabeth Smart (R) and her father Ed Smart (L) walk away from federal court after the sentencing of Elizabeths kidnapper Brian David Mitchell May 25, 2011 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Mitchell was sentenced to life for the kidnapping of Elizabeth Smart in 2002.
Elizabeth Smart finally got her chance Wednesday to confront the street preacher convicted of holding her captive and raping her for months when she was just 14. Now 23, she stood tall in the courtroom - stoic, with an even voice and a strength Brian David Mitchell clearly lacked.

Mitchell, frail and skinny with a long, peppery white beard, sang hymns softly and closed his hollow eyes, just as he did throughout his trial, just as he would moments later as the judge gave him two life sentences without parole. That did not stop Smart from looking right at him and coolly speaking her piece.

It took her about 30 seconds.

"I don't have very much to say to you. I know exactly what you did," said Smart, wearing a houndstooth checked skirt, an ivory jacket and pearls. "I know that you know that what you did was wrong. You did it with full knowledge ... but I have a wonderful life now and no matter what you do, you will never affect me again.


Feet washed ashore in British Columbia, Canada identified: Foul play ruled out

Two feet that washed ashore on two separate B.C. islands in 2008 belonged to a 21-year-old Surrey resident who went missing four years earlier, according to the provincial Coroners Service.

DNA testing has confirmed the feet that were found on Feb. 8 on Valdes Island and June 16 on Westham Island belonged to the missing man, the Coroners Service said in a statement issued Tuesday. The feet were found inside matching Nike running shoes.

The coroner determined the feet were not cut from the body, but separated through natural decomposition. Foul play has been ruled out in the incident, but the person's name was not released.


Don't Worry, The Rapture Is Still Totally On

© Unknown
A lot of people were making fun of radio preacher Harold Camping when no one was raptured up the heavens on Saturday, but he's come up with a perfectly logical explanation: It was just "an invisible judgment day" when Jesus double checked his naughty and nice lists. "We've always said May 21 was the day, but we didn't understand altogether the spiritual meaning," said Camping. Now he's rescheduled Judgement Day for October 21, the day he previously said the planet would be consumed by a fireball. He hasn't set a new date for our fiery demise, so just hang on to your tinfoil hats for the time being.


Risk From Spent Nuclear Reactor Fuel Is Greater in U.S. Than in Japan, Study Says

Spent nuclear fuel pool
© n/a
Spent nuclear fuel pool
The threat of a catastrophic release of radioactive materials from a spent fuel pool at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi plant is dwarfed by the risk posed by such pools in the United States, which are typically filled with far more radioactive material, according to a study released on Tuesday by a nonprofit institute.

The report, from the Institute for Policy Studies, recommends that the United States transfer most of the nation's spent nuclear fuel from pools filled with cooling water to dry sealed steel casks to limit the risk of an accident resulting from an earthquake, terrorism or other event.

"The largest concentrations of radioactivity on the planet will remain in storage at U.S. reactor sites for the indefinite future," the report's author, Robert Alvarez, a senior scholar at the institute, wrote. "In protecting America from nuclear catastrophe, safely securing the spent fuel by eliminating highly radioactive, crowded pools should be a public safety priority of the highest degree."


Nuclear Insanity

Dr. Vandana Shiva
© n/a
Dr. Vandana Shiva
Fukushima has raised, once again, the perennial questions about human fallibility and human frailty, about human hubris and man's arrogance in thinking he can control nature. The earthquakes, the tsunami, the meltdown at Japan's nuclear power plant are nature's reminders of her power.

The scientific and industrial revolution was based on the idea that nature is dead, and the earth inert matter. The tragedy in Japan is a wakeup call from Mother Nature - an alarm to tell us she is alive and powerful, and that humans are powerless in her path. The ruined harbours, villages and towns, the ships, aeroplanes and cars tossed away by the angry waves as if they were tiny toys are reminders that should correct the assumption that man can dominate over nature - with technology, tools and industrial infrastructure.

The Fukushima disaster invites us to revisit the human-nature relationship. It also raises questions about the so-called "nuclear renaissance" as an answer to the climate and energy crisis. President of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, Arjun Makhijani, speaking at Public Interest Environmental Law Conference, said that "nuclear renaissance" would need 300 reactors every week and two-three uranium enrichment plants every year. The spent fuel would contain 90,000 bombs of plutonium per year if separated. Water required would be 10-20 million litres per day.