British burglar provides updated photo for his own wanted poster

A British man on the run from police sent a picture of himself to his local paper because he disliked the mugshot they had printed of him as part of a public appeal to track him down.

South Wales Police had issued media with the photo of Matthew Maynard, wanted by officers investigating a house burglary, as part of a crackdown on crime in Swansea.

When it appeared in the South Wales Evening Post, the 23-year-old sent the newspaper a replacement photo of himself standing in front of a police van. They obligingly printed it on the front page.

The police thanked him for helping them in their appeal, saying: “Everyone in Swansea will know what he looks like now.”

He felt safe and secure enough to take a new photo – standing in front of a copper’s van. Har!

Tough woman cop who makes a difference – is Fort Hood hero

The police officer who ended the Fort Hood massacre by shooting the suspect is known as the enforcer on her street, a “tough woman” who patrolled her neighborhood and once stopped burglars at her house.

“If you come in, I’m going to shoot,” Kimberly Munley told the would-be intruders last year.

It was Munley who arrived quickly Thursday at the scene of the worst massacre at an Army base in U.S. history, where 13 people were killed. She confronted the alleged gunman, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, and shot him four times. Munley was wounded in the exchange.

That’s just like her, friends and family say…

Munley, the mother of a 3-year-old girl, lives on a street where a lot of homes are vacant because so many residents are deployed at war in Iraq and Afghanistan…

We sleep a lot safer knowing she’s on the block,” said Sgt. William Barbrow, another neighbor…

Her bio on Twitter makes the point: “I live a good life….a hard one, but I go to sleep peacefully @ night knowing that I may have made a difference in someone’s life.”

You surely made a difference, this time.

EU court rules crucifixes should be banned from Italian schools

The European Court of Human Rights has ruled against the use of crucifixes in classrooms in Italy.

It said the practice violated the right of parents to educate their children as they saw fit, and ran counter to the child’s right to freedom of religion.

The case was brought by an Italian mother, Soile Lautsi, who wants to give her children a secular education.

The Strasbourg court found that: “The compulsory display of a symbol of a given confession in premises used by the public authorities… restricted the right of parents to educate their children in conformity with their convictions.”

It also restricted the “right of children to believe or not to believe“, the seven judges ruling on the case said in a statement…

Mrs Lautsi complained to the European court that her children had to attend a public school in northern Italy that had crucifixes in every room. She was awarded €5,000 in damages.

Vatican spokesman the Rev Federico Lombardi said the European court had no right intervening in such a profoundly Italian matter.

He told Italian TV: “The crucifix has always been a sign of God’s love, unity and hospitality to all humanity…

The law requiring crucifixes to be hung in schools dates back to the 1920s.

Although a revised accord between the Vatican and the Italian government ended Catholicism’s position as the state religion in 1984, the crucifix law has never been repealed.

Surely, no one expected leadership from Italian politicians or courts in completing the process of separation of church and state. That would be like separating money from greed.

Freedom of the Press doesn’t apply to Palin anti-abortion rant

Sarah Palin spoke at an event hosted by a Wisconsin anti-abortion group, last night.

The “rogue” made certain it was a closed event – no press. Amid apparent worries that the ex-governor’s words will be aired publicly despite that restriction, however, Wisconsin Right to Life and/or Palin’s handlers are taking the notion of “closed” to a whole new level.

Check out this list of prohibited items at the event, which was spotted by CBS News Political Director Steve Chaggaris. All bags, by the way, “will be searched”:

•No cell phones
•No recording devices
•No video or still cameras
•No laptops
•No photos or recording allowed
•No literature distribution
•No posters or banners
•No strollers or car seats
•No carry-in food or beverages

The restrictions are “bizarre,” according to Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate.

“You know, for someone who claims to be a rogue and isn’t afraid of what other people think it really is sort of hypocritical to not let the media, the press cover your event,” he told Wisconsin Radio Network.

BTW – the event came up short of filling the 3500-seat arena. Security was so omnipresent, it took 2 hours to get the audience into the hall – and the call for a putsch started a half-hour late.

The event brought in just under $100K. AFAIK, Palin’s minimum charge for a rant = $75K.

Four to be hanged for superstitious killing of albino in Tanzania


Witch doctors teach that body parts
from albinos can bring luck and wealth.

A court sentenced four people to death in northern Tanzania for the killing of an albino man who was targeted for body parts believed to have special powers, authorities said Friday….

So far, seven people have been sentenced to death for the killing of more than 50 Tanzanian albinos, including children, in the past two years, Haule said. Dozens more are awaiting trial….

Body parts of albinos are sought in some regions of Tanzania and other African countries, where some believe they bring wealth and good luck. Attackers chop off limbs and pluck out organs, selling them to witch doctors.

Killings have gone up in the east African nation, which has an estimated 200,000 albinos, according to the Tanzania Albino Center.

“People believe that albino body parts mixed with traditional medicine can make people rich,” said Franck Alphonse, the center’s director. “It is a thriving business … witch doctors are asking business people to bring the body parts of albinos, who are not considered human beings….”

“We want to see justice done to everyone involved in the killings,” Alphonse said. “They (police) only pick those who slaughtered albinos, what about those who send these people to kill?”

Broken down to its elements, it’s all about religion superstition and greed, and a willingness to do anything, to anyone, to get whatever.

ATL bus driver orders passengers to pray before they can exit??!!

A MARTA bus driver is on suspension following allegations that he forced passengers to pray before allowing them to exit the bus.

Christopher James was one of those passengers. James said, initially, he thought something was wrong when he rang the bell to get off the bus and the door didn’t open.

James said the bus driver asked him and three other passengers to join hands in prayer. James said the driver prayed with the group for about four minutes….

Cripes! One of those long-winded guys, too.

James’ cousin, who arrived at the bus stop to meet him, said she saw the men standing inside the bus, but didn’t realize they were praying.

“I was like, ‘Why were y’all praying on the bus? He said the man would not let them off the bus.”

And they wonder why nobody likes MARTA. Har!

Waiter, there’s a fly – killed by pesticide – in my soup!

fly_soup

The science of biomonitoring continues to develop new technologies to inform governments, industry and individuals about what chemicals get into the environment – and into us – that shouldn’t be there…

Now a team of chemists at McMaster University in Ontario have published a paper in Analytical Chemistry that describes a new biomonitoring technique using treated paper on a stick that can quickly identify trace amounts of pesticides in your chicken soup, or your first early morning cup of joe:

The scientists describe the development of a new paper-based test strip that changes color shades depending on the amount of pesticide present. In laboratory studies using food and beverage samples intentionally contaminated with common pesticides, the test strips accurately identified minute amounts of pesticides. The test strips, which produced results in less than 5 minutes, could be particularly useful in developing countries or remote areas that may lack access to expensive testing equipment and electricity, they note.

As these tools for measuring human-produced toxins get easier and cheaper, the collection of data will hopefully provide a clearer picture of the true levels of these pollutants in the environment, and inside us. This also will speed up the effort to better understand how toxins interact with bodies and cells at a molecular level – including the interaction of genes and toxins that may or may not be contributing to a rise in certain diseases such as leukemia in children and brain cancer.

You also will scare the crap out of some overpriced eateries when you walk in with your test tubes.