Ben E. King, 1938 — 2015

May 1, 2015

Ben E. King, 1938 -- 2015

Soulful vocalist Ben E. King (Ben Nelson) died Thursday at age 76. He sang with the Five Crowns and the Drifters before recording the solo hit records “Spanish Harlem” (1960) and “Stand By Me” (1961).

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Pope Francis Says the Gender Wage Gap is a Scandal

April 30, 2015

Pope Francis Says the Gender Wage Gap Is a Scandal
“The Christian seed of radical equality between men and women must bring new fruits,” Pope Francis said on Wednesday. “We should support with decisiveness the right to equal pay for equal work. Why should it be taken for granted that women must earn less than men? The disparity is pure scandal.”

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Baltimore: Hard Times in the City

April 29, 2015

“Baltimore,” written in 1977 by LA’s Randy Newman, performed here by Jamaica’s Tamlins (Carlton Smith, Junior Moore, and Derrick Lara) in this 1979 recording produced by Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare.

“Good people hide their faces
And they hide their eyes
’cause the city is dying
And they don’t know why.”

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Ten-Ton Fatberg

April 28, 2015

Ten-Ton Fatberg

A 10-ton mass of congealed fat and wet wipes was recently removed from the London sewer it destroyed. The 130-foot-long “fatberg” was under the streets of Chelsea, home to posh restaurants, all of them pouring cooking grease down the bunghole, and prestigious residences flushing wet wipes down the loo. It will take four months and $600,000 to repair the sewer.

This is far from a UK record. In 2013 a 15-ton fatberg was removed from  a sewer in Kingston.

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Petraeus: Probation for Pillow Talk Leaks

April 27, 2015

Petraeus: Probation for Pillow Talk Leaks

Former CIA Director David Petraeus was sentenced to two years’ probation and fined $100,000 for leaking military secrets to his mistress/biographer Paula Broadwell. General Petraeus could have been sentenced to a year in prison; the fine is less than the fee he gets for a single speech.

That’ll teach him.

More:

“Petraeus receives no jail time for leaking. Whistleblowers face decades in jail.” Trevor Timm, BoingBoing

“7 whistleblowers facing more jail time than Gen. Petraeus,” Ben Branstetter, DailyDot

“Gen. David Petraeus: From hero to zero,” Justin Wm. Moyer, Washington Post

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Jeb Bush is on the Paleo Diet

April 26, 2015

 Jeb Bush is on the Paleo Diet

While his rival Marco Rubio says we can’t go back to the ideas of the past, Jeb Bush is on the “Caveman Diet.”

Ex-Governor Bush is sticking to the Paleo diet on the campaign trail, and he’s lost 30 pounds.

Archaeologist Jean-Denis Vigne concludes that the Paleo diet is “more inspired by the myth of the noble savage than by the realities revealed by science.” That’s a pretty good description of the candidate’s economic policies, too.

More:

“How to Really Eat Like a Hunter-Gatherer: Why the Paleo Diet Is Half-Baked,” Ferris Jabr, Scientific American

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Senate Confirms Loretta Lynch

April 25, 2015

Senate Confirms Loretta Lynch

After symbolically stonewalling for 161 days, the U.S. Senate finally confirmed the appointment of federal prosecutor Loretta Lynch as Attorney General of the United States on Thursday by a vote of 56 to 43, with 10 Republicans voting “Aye.” Maybe those 10 GOP senators wanted a tough prosecutor running DOJ or were anxious to see the back of incumbent AG Eric Holder, but several may have thought they were voting for country singer Loretta Lynn.

Not country music fan Ted Cruz, though. The Texas Tea Party senator skipped the vote, the only senator to do so. He was too busy raising campaign money in Dallas for his presidential crusade.

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9mm Computer Tech Support

April 24, 2015

9mm Computer Tech Support
Last Monday evening in Colorado Springs when Lucas Hinch saw his computer monitor go solid blue, he saw red. He took the Dell  XPS 410 off the desk and into a back alley, pulled out his Hi-Point pistol, and uploaded a clip of 9mm bullets into it, right through that useless motherboard.

The police cited him with discharging a firearm within the city limits, but the Internet resounded with accolades.

More:

“‘Fed Up’ Colorado Man, 38, Busted For Killing His Computer In Cold Blood,” The Smoking Gun

“Man puts 8 bullets in his Dell, tells police it’s worth the ticket,” Megan Geuss, Ars Technica

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Michele Bachmann: Barack Obama is Bringing on the End Times

April 23, 2015

Michele Bachmann: Barack Obama is Bringing on the End Times

Former Congresscreature and born-again Tea Party loon Michele Bachmann foresees that the Rapture is nigh. Ms. Bachmann told radio host Jan Markell that the End Times are being ushered in by that Antichrist, Barack Obama.

“We need to realize how close this clock is to getting towards the midnight hour. It’s just like the Bible forewarned: in the last days it will be like the beginning of birth pangs. In my opinion, we are far beyond the beginning of birth pangs. We’re moving far down into the process. For women who are listening to this show today, you know what I’m talking about. What it’s like to deliver a baby at the very beginning stages and then at the very end before the baby is born. All I can tell you as a mom who has given birth to five babies, the birth pangs are very close together, they are very intense now and we are literally watching month by month the speed move up to a level we’ve never seen before with these events. Barack Obama is intent, it is his number one goal, to ensure that Iran has a nuclear weapon. Why? Why would you put the nuclear weapon in the hands of mad men?”

— “Michele Bachmann: Barack Obama is ushering in a baby called the Rapture,” Joanna Rothkopf, Salon

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Espresso in Space!

April 22, 2015

Espresso in Space!

If  you want decent coffee in space, invite the Italians.

When Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano was on the International Space Station in 2013, he really missed having a decent cup of coffee. Samantha Cristoforetti, an Italian flight engineer from the European Space Agency, has been on the ISS for a year and feels the same. Lavazza and Italian tech firm Argotec just delivered an experimental ISSpresso Machine to her so she can finally get espresso in space. NASA threw in a matching set of high-tech coffee cups for zero-gravity sipping.

Of course now an Italian astronaut will want a decent bombolone or cornetto.

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