Sunday, August 28, 2016

Pharma hacks tells HPV vaccine-damaged teen they ‘don’t feel guilty’ about destroying lives ...



In Galway, Ireland, one brave young girl named Rebecca recently faced off with a panel of mainstream medical industry hacks. In her introduction to the group, Rebecca says that she currently needs to see four doctors and is no longer in school because of the injuries she incurred after receiving an HPV vaccine. The adverse effects she has experienced from the vaccine have left her wheelchair-bound.

Rebecca asks the panel, "I was just wondering, do you feel guilty for promoting this vaccine that has left so many girls out of school, wheelchair-bound, and just basically don't have a life?"

Of course, the responding person tries to deflect the question; its very clear that she does not want to answer it. "I can't say anything to you, other than ... you'd have to have a heart of stone not to feel deeply for the situation you are in," the woman retorts. In a trailing voice, the woman says, "So let's not run away from that ..." while trying to change the subject.

Rebecca, however, does not back down. She interrupts the pandering platitudes being handed out to her and repeats herself, "Do you feel guilty, yes or no?" Full story...

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Sikkim officially declared India’s first 100% organic, GMO-free state...

In a country where Monsanto has control over 95% of cotton seed, and where the most hated bio-tech company of the century has caused a massive 291,000 suicides with its poisonous pesticides and fertilizers, GMOs and extortionist business practices, a tiny Himalayan state has done the unthinkable.

It took 10 years for India’s eastern state of Sikkim to implement organic practices and convert 75,000 hectares of agricultural land into certified organic farms. Earlier this year, the Prime Minister of India formally declared Sikkim — which now produces 800,000 tons of organic produce, accounting for nearly 65% of all of India’s 1.24 million tons — the country’s first 100% organic state free of harmful pesticides, chemical fertilizers and toxic GMOs.

In 2003, the Chief Minister of Sikkim declared in the state legislative assembly that Sikkim would shun chemical pesticides and fertilizers and return to natural methods of farming. Their intention was to solve environmental and health problems caused by chemical intensive farming methods. Later, the state government banned the entry and sale of chemical inputs for farmland, leaving farmers with no option but to go organic. The journey wasn’t easy. There were farmers’ protests, dissent and resistance. There were worries of production falling, due to the heavy costs involved in the transition. The farmers were barely sustaining themselves, so questions were raised about feasibility of using indigenous technologies — like pheromone traps to control fruit flies, bio-pesticides, and bio-fertilizers — and natural alternatives —like compost and manure made from dung, decayed leaves, and dry grasses. Full story...

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All the ways your wifi router can spy on you...

City dwellers spend nearly every moment of every day awash in Wi-Fi signals. Homes, streets, businesses, and office buildings are constantly blasting wireless signals every which way for the benefit of nearby phones, tablets, laptops, wearables, and other connected paraphernalia.

When those devices connect to a router, they send requests for information—a weather forecast, the latest sports scores, a news article—and, in turn, receive that data, all over the air. As it communicates with the devices, the router is also gathering information about how its signals are traveling through the air, and whether they’re being disrupted by obstacles or interference. With that data, the router can make small adjustments to communicate more reliably with the devices it’s connected to.

But it can also be used to monitor humans—and in surprisingly detailed ways.

As people move through a space with a Wi-Fi signal, their bodies affect it, absorbing some waves and reflecting others in various directions. By analyzing the exact ways that a Wi-Fi signal is altered when a human moves through it, researchers can “see” what someone writes with their finger in the air, identify a particular person by the way that they walk, and even read a person’s lips with startling accuracy—in some cases even if a router isn’t in the same room as the person performing the actions. Full story...

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Freddy Mercury: How a polite African schoolboy became pop's most outrageous frontman...

He wasn't Freddie Mercury, rock star, back then.

There was no Queen. No packed Wembley Stadium. No adoring fans. And no tragic death at the hands of AIDS.

He was Farrokh Bulsara when he was born in Zanzibar in 1946 before going to a boarding school in India when he was eight.

Now new pictures have shown the Queen front man as you've never seen him before from his early life growing up with his loving family. More + photos...

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Song for Chennai...

Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis!!!

When a man swimming naked in a Bavarian lake felt a strange pain in his nether regions, he looked up to see a fisherman on the shore. "Don’t pull!" he shouted.

At first the man thought he had just become tangled in some weeds, but when he looked down he noticed in horror that a fishing hook was tugging at the most sensitive part of his body, the Augsburger Allgemeine (AA) reports.

The man, who told the local paper he wished to keep his identity secret, is a regular at Augsburg’s Kaisersee, a popular bathing spot for naked swimmers.

He was doing the crawl with his head under the water when he felt the unpleasant sensation in his thighs - and only then did he notice that there was a fisherman on the shore.

 After he shouted out his warning to the fisherman to hold still, he swam towards the angler's position on the bank. Full story...

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Heart-wrenching tale of a Tamil Nadu boy forced to beg to pay for a bribe...

In the village of Koonathur, 15-year-old Ajith makes his way through an MTC bus, clutching a broken piece of a pot. Waving it at passengers, the coins jingle as he earns the day’s alms.

When he is not aboard a bus, he sits in front of a banner written in Tamil.

The banner reads – “I am in no position to repay the money borrowed for my father's last rites. I have been asked to pay Rs. 3,000 as bribe to the administration to get the Rs 12,500 that my family is entitled to. Please help.”

His father, Kolanji, had died last year from kidney failure and had left behind a mountain of debt from his eldest daughter’s marriage. Under the farmers’ social security scheme, Kolanji’s kin is entitled to Rs 12,500. The cheque was made out in his mother’s name, who was working as a labourer in Mumbai and therefore could not come to the village.

 “I walked into the office with my uncle and asked the Village Administrative Officer for the entitled money. He asked me for a bribe of Rs 3000 openly. I said I could not pay it. I have no money, no home, nothing,” Ajith said, speaking to TNM. More + video...

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The woman who married the Eiffel Tower wants to set the record straight about Objectum Sexuality...

FOR a big portion of her life, Erika’s sexual orientation has been met with almost universal condemnation or disdain.

No, she’s not a lesbian confined to a fundamentalist Christian community, she’s an Objectum Sexual (OS). Objectum Sexuality is the inclination to develop significant relationships with inanimate objects.

“Everyone has a type they are drawn to. That includes OS people.”

That’s Erika Labrie, who in 2007 changed her surname to Eiffel after a commitment ceremony to her partner of 10 years — the Eiffel Tower.

“I find my type is an object that’s misunderstood by the world. The Eiffel Tower is surrounded by millions of tourists who are in love with each other, not with her.” Full story...

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Chess queen of Africa...

I first met Phiona Mutesi in September 2010 sitting on the mud stoop of her family’s shack in one of the most challenging places on earth: Uganda’s Katwe slum. I had been told about Phiona; how at the age of nine she could neither read nor write and had dropped out of school, when she met a Ugandan missionary, Robert Katende, who offered to teach her the game of chess – a sport so foreign in Uganda that there is no word for it in Phiona’s native language – and how in just four years she had become an international chess champion. On that autumn day, Phiona’s mother Harriet looked as defeated as any person I’ve known. She had been forced to relocate Phiona and her two brothers five times in the previous four years, once because they’d been robbed of all their meagre possessions and another time because Harriet feared their house was about to collapse.

Phiona’s latest home consisted of one 10ft x 10ft room with no windows and a tin roof so dilapidated that every rainstorm flooded the shack. The house contained little more than a wash pot, a tiny charcoal stove, a teapot, a worn toothbrush, a cracked mirror, a Bible and two musty mattresses for the entire family to sleep on.

(...)

Soon, Phiona’s brother Brian joined them and a year later a barefoot girl in a muddy skirt peeked into the veranda and caught Katende’s eye. Phiona’s first chess tutor was Gloria, a four-year-old girl who knew little more than the names of the pieces and how they moved. Within a year of learning the game, mostly through trial and error, it became evident that Phiona had a special gift for the sport. “Chess is a lot like my life,” she said. “If you make smart moves you can stay away from danger, but any bad decision could be your last.”

(...)

I asked Phiona if she’d seen the movie. “No, I haven’t watched it yet,” she told me, flashing her charming gap-toothed grin. “I already know the story.” Full story...

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London gets a BLOWJOB CAFE!

Maldives: trouble in paradise...

Graham Greene would have immediately recognised the Maldives as the perfect setting for an exotic tale of tropical intrigue.

It consists of 26 coral atolls - 1,192 individual islands - stretching hundreds of miles into the blue vastness of the Indian Ocean like - and let me apologise in advance for this, because it is impossible not to sound like a holiday brochure - like "a string of pearls".

It is justifiably famous for its breathtakingly beautiful, and breathtakingly expensive, luxury hotels. And while we are on the holiday theme, yes, it is a wonderful place for a romantic getaway.

But not a great place to be a journalist. A number of foreign reporters have been deported recently and for covering much less sensitive subjects than well-sourced claims of an impending attempt to depose the government. Full story...

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Filipinos seen backing Duterte despite rising drug killings...

On the day he was sworn into office, President Rodrigo Duterte went to a Manila slum and exhorted residents who knew any drug addicts to "go ahead and kill them yourself as getting their parents to do it would be too painful."

Two months later, nearly 2,000 suspected drug pushers and users lay dead as morgues continue to fill up. Faced with criticism of his actions by rights activists, international bodies and outspoken Filipinos, including the top judge, Duterte has stuck to his guns and threatened to declare martial law if the Supreme Court meddles in his work.

According to a survey early last month, he has the support of nearly 91 percent of Filipinos. The independent poll was done during his first week in office, and no new surveys have come out since then.

National police chief Ronald dela Rosa told a Senate hearing this week that police have recorded more than 1,900 dead, including 756 suspected drug dealers and users who were gunned down after they resisted arrest. More than 1,000 other deaths are under investigation, and some of them may not be drug-related, he said. Full story...

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Horrific abuse scandal in town dubbed 'child sex capital of Britain'

Police are under fire over a “ Rotherham style ” abuse scandal in a town dubbed the child sex capital of Britain.

Officers are accused of taking too long to probe allegations contained in files stretching to 150 pages.

It is claimed reports of grooming in Telford, Shrops, were logged incorrectly and not taken seriously enough despite an earlier probe that led to seven men being jailed in 2012.

Today, one victim who was hawked among paedophiles and forced to sleep with a string of men, said: “The police have betrayed the children of this town for a second time. Full story...

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Singapore deploys thousands of mosquitoes in its war against dengue...

Thousands of male Aedes aegypti mosquitoes carrying the Wolbachia bacterium will be released regularly into three former dengue clusters at Tampines Avenue 4, Yishun Street 21, as well as Jalan Riang and Jalan Sukachita in Serangoon over six months from October 2016, the National Environment Agency (NEA) announced on Saturday (Aug 27). It is part of a "small-scale" field study and comes after a comprehensive risk assessment found it would be safe to release such mosquitoes, with no risk to human health and insignificant impact on ecology, NEA said.

Only female Aedes mosquitoes spread dengue by biting humans. Should a male carrier of the Wolbachia bacterium mate with an uninfected female mosquito, the resulting eggs will not hatch. NEA hopes that by releasing sufficient numbers of Wolbachia-carrying Aedes aegypti males, they can compete successfully against wild males and eventually drive down mosquito numbers as the population fails to reproduce. Over time, this could also reduce the potential spread of dengue. NEA expects that the method could also help prevent the transmission of other mosquito-transmitted diseases such as Chikungunya and Zika.

NEA said it carried out a four-year evaluation of the process, involving critical reviews of existing research, consultations with various stakeholders such as academic experts, medical and healthcare professionals, and non-governmental organisations such as nature groups. It found the bacterium – which is naturally found in insects in the wild – to offer suitable biological properties. Full story...

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Sweden sees record numbers of asylum seekers withdraw applications and leave...

A record 4,542 asylum seekers withdrew their applications and left Sweden in the first eight months of 2016 as a result of long processing times, strict new rules on family reunion, and payouts to migrants who voluntarily returned to their country of origin.

There were also less than half as many new claims made between January and August 2016, as in the same period of 2015.

Sweden used to be one of Europe’s most popular destinations for migrants, with the number of asylum applications doubling between 2014 and 2015 to more than 160,000.

A high success rate – 55 per cent of claims were accepted in 2015 – combined with generous welfare benefits for asylum seekers, and a comparatively welcoming population, made the country extremely popular with people fleeing war and persecution, and left the Scandinavian nation with the second highest number of refugees per capita in Europe.

But for many asylum seekers who arrived during the influx last year, Sweden has proved less of a utopia than they hoped. Many faced a long, cold winter in political limbo, camped out in makeshift accomodation while the state struggled to cope with the large number of new claims. Less than 500 of the 160,000 arrivals have managed to secure jobs. Full story...

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Saturday, August 27, 2016

Israeli military clears its troops of Gaza war crime allegations...

A shocking story of how a Chicago cop killed a teen -- then locked up his best friend for the murder...

In 2012, 19-year-old Tevin Louis and his best friend Marquise Sampson allegedly robbed a restaurant. After reportedly making off with about $1,200, the two ran in different directions. Sampson crossed paths with an officer, who gave chase and ultimately opened fire, killing the teenager. Louis arrived at the scene where his friend was shot, and attempted to cross the police line. He was arrested for disorderly conduct. But in a shocking turn, Louis was eventually charged with first-degree murder in the death of his best friend, even though it was the officer who killed Sampson. Louis was found guilty. He is now serving a 32-year sentence for armed robbery and a 20-year sentence for murder. Louis is one of 10 people with similar cases exposed in the Chicago Reader’s new article headlined “Charged with Murder, But They Didn’t Kill Anyone—Police Did.” For more, we speak with the article’s authors: Alison Flowers, a journalist with the Chicago-based Invisible Institute, and Sarah Macaraeg, an independent journalist and fellow with the International Center for Journalists. Full story...

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The emerging "mark of the beast" system...

(...)

Few surveillance instruments are as effective for monitoring the movements of individuals as smart ID cards, particularly when empowered by modern technology and infrastructure. The Secretary General of Interpol and the EDAPS Consortium clearly know this when in an intriguing announcement in 2011, called for development of an electronic “Globally Verifiable Identity Card.” The card was envisaged to be embedded with a contactless microchip and integrated biometric technologies providing “automation of border and migration control at all levels” and verifiable “through national and international databases.”

Taking the globally verifiable identification card to a new level is this curious proposal by science fiction writer Elizabeth Moon, who told BBC in 2012 that to change the world everyone should be issued a unique ID barcode or implantable chip:

… I would insist on every individual having a unique ID permanently attached – a barcode if you will; an implanted chip to provide an easy, fast inexpensive way to identify individuals…

Moving forward to 2014, is this chorus of calls for ubiquitous surveillance, global ID systems and universal human chip implants merely the paranoid fantasies of spirited imaginations?

Renewed calls for the beefing up of the world’s surveillance systems appear to come on the heels of nearly every major breach of security. Malaysia’s missing airliner MH370 on 8 March 2014 is a good case in point. Given the frustration with the search for the missing aircraft, China announced at the end of March a curious plan involving “massively increasing its network of surveillance and observation satellites so it can monitor the entire planet.” Full story...

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Thailand frees prominent activist over royal insult...

Thailand has freed a political activist after eight years in jail for insulting the country's widely revered monarchy under its draconian royal defamation laws.

Daranee Charnchoengsilpakul, also known as "Da Torpedo", was freed on Saturday under an annual series of royal pardons, Charnchao Chaiyanukij, permanent secretary of the Justice Ministry, told Reuters.

She was originally sentenced to 15 years in prison, he said.

Daranee, a key supporter of ousted former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, was convicted of making defamatory comments against the monarchy during a fiery speech at a political rally in 2008.

The Criminal Court found her guilty on three counts of lese-majeste. Full story...

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Havana through the eyes of two food vendors...

Although it is 3:35am, Jose and Leo aren't sleepy. They've had enough rest to begin a new day.

They wear the same pullovers as the day before - or perhaps clean but worn-out ones, which will become the dirty pullovers of the days to come, olive-green army trousers and boots. Jose's are short, leather ones that cover his ankles. Leo's are knee-high rain boots.

They open their apartment door, descend three storeys down the sinuous stairs of their colonial building in Old Havana and go out in search of the carretilla (pushcart) from which they will sell fruit and vegetables for the next 16 hours.

They look like a pair of tin soldiers walking down a desolate street. At this time, Havana is a city of sleepwalkers - a strange, deserted place. There are shadows and murmurs that come as if from nowhere.

In a few hours' time, San Rafael Boulevard will turn into an incessant stream of people coming and going, buying and selling; but for now, it is a long, wide corridor, its cavities visible, its cracks exposed.

Just around the corner from the boulevard, a cat paws a dead chicken wrapped in a nylon bag. A police patrol surfs slowly along Prado, the street dividing Centro and Old Havana. Full story...

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Burkina Faso bans big buttocks beauty contest...

The government of Burkina Faso has banned an annual beauty contest for women with the biggest buttocks, saying such events are sexist.

Adverts for this weekend's third edition of 'Miss Bim-Bim', carrying an image of two fully clothed women with exaggeratedly large behinds, provoked an outcry on social media.

"Our role is to do everything to avoid damaging the image of women," said Minister Laure Zongo in a statement, adding that social media criticism had persuaded her to act.

The male organizer of the event, Hamado Doambahe, said it aimed to promote a more positive body image for African women and encourage fashion designers to use African costumes.

Contests like Miss Bim-Bim have been held in other West African countries. Full story...

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The Satanic Temple's fight to protect your abortion rights...

WhatsApp and Facebook data sharing plan being investigated...

The UK's Information Commissioner (ICO) is looking into WhatsApp's decision to share more data with parent company Facebook.

The data about WhatsApp users will be used to help targeted advertising seen by people on Facebook.

It will share phone numbers and the details of the last time that users signed on to WhatsApp, with Facebook.

The ICO said because the changes would affect a lot of people it wanted more details about what was being shared.

Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham said in a statement that users' opinions about the change was likely to be split. Full story...

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Nearly 5% of Utah students opted out of vaccination...

Doctors say crowded classrooms can be a prime ground for spreading illness, which is why they urge parents to immunize their children.

State law requires those going into kindergarten or middle school to get certain vaccinations, but parents can get an exemption from the shots for three reasons: medical, religious, or personal.

“In my opinion, vaccines are not worth the risk,” Jared St. Clair said.

St. Clair owns Vitality Nutrition and hosts Vitality Radio in Bountiful. He also has six children who have never gotten a vaccine.

“My parents educated themselves on it, chose not to vaccinate me, I chose not to vaccinate my kids,” he said. “We made that decision based on the best information we could find.” Full story...

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Pensioner suddenly learns to play the piano after suffering from a stroke...

A pensioner has suddenly become able to play the piano after surviving a stroke .

Roy Calloway, 78, had never been able to play any musical instrument until he recovered from the stroke.

He was amazed when he discovered his new talent of being able to tinkle the ivories.

Roy said: "I played and I couldn't believe it. It just came out naturally and I was in shock."

Roy, of Upper Cwmtwrch, Swansea, South Wales, had the latest stroke after a series of heart problems. Full story...

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They are after your cash (and if this happens they will get it)

If the IRS has its way, cash will be a thing of the past. In its place, every transaction will be digital, every purchase will leave a footprint. And it will tell your story – where you go and what you buy while you are there.

A cashless society means your bank – and the US government – controls every penny you own and every purchase you make. They can freeze your account at will, leaving you destitute with just a few taps on a keyboard.

As Ron Paul said, “The cashless society is the IRS’ dream: total knowledge of, and control over, the finances of every single American.”

Now you may ask, why? Simple answer, because cash is anonymous and almost impossible to track -- so Uncle Sam cannot control it.

The move towards a cashless, controlled state has been in motion for decades. If you travel by air, you have experienced this first hand. “Cashless cabins” are the rule on nearly all airlines. Every glass of wine, extra cushion or headset must be purchased on credit. Every transaction is tracked, every purchase made subject to interest being tacked on to the principle. Full story...

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Snollebollekes - Bam Bam (Bam)

India launches new online facility to lodge complaints of child sexual abuse...

A composite photo shows Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi launching the POCSO e-Box in New Delhi on Aug. 26, 2016. Minister of State for Women and Child Development, Krishna Raj, Ministry Secretary Leena Nair and other dignitaries are also seen.Press Information Bureau

Women and Child Development (WCD) Minister Maneka Gandhi on Friday inaugurated the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) e-Box, an online complaint box for reporting child sexual abuse, in Delhi.

An official statement from the WCD Ministry describes this POCSO e-Box as "an online complaint management system for easy and direct reporting of sexual offences against children and timely action against the offenders under the POCSO Act, 2012."

Sexual offences against children, although prevalent, regularly go unreported. The reasons may vary from parents not believing the child or the child believing that what happened was their fault. Quite often, children are also too afraid to speak up, having been threatened by the perpetrator, who may be known to them, or worse, be a member of their family. Full story...

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Girl, 5, latest victim in Philippines 'war on drugs'

A five-year-old girl has become the youngest victim of tough-talking Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte's "war on drugs" that has left more than 1900 people dead in seven weeks.

Danica May died from a gunshot wound to the head after unidentified gunmen opened fire on her family as they sat down to lunch in their home in Dagupan, a city of 170,000 north of Manila.

The killing came as president Duterte shrugged off criticism of his campaign from the United States, United Nations, the Catholic Church and human rights groups, declaring "this fight against drugs will continue until the last day of my term".

Little Danica's grandfather, Maximo Garcia, who she was living with after her 29-year-old mother separated from her husband, learnt last week that he was on a list of alleged drug suspects that somebody had given to local police. Full story...

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Brazilian Coca-Cola manufacturer accused of slave labor...

Two Coca-Cola production and distribution centers in Brazil were accused by government officials of subjecting workers to slave-like labor conditions, according to a report released by Reporter Brasil Thursday.

In a seven-month long inspection carried out by the Brazilian Ministry of Labor it was discovered that 179 truck drivers of Spal Brazilian Beverage Industries, which is a licensed manufacturer of Coca-Cola, had been forced to work excessive overtime hours, ranging from 80 to 140 extra hours per month.

Due to their demanding schedules, it was revealed that drivers were often denied sleep and rest between shifts, which according to Reporter Brasil, led to a variety of physical and mental health related issues, such as “body aches, stress, lack of interaction with family members and almost no leisure time.”

As part of its investigation, Reporter Brasil noted that Spal had been previously penalized by judicial authorities for imposing unethical labor practices on its workers.

The article cites that in 2013 and 2014 former truck drivers sued the company, which eventually lead to a court ruling that determined employees of Spal had been subjected to degrading working conditions "due to strenuous working hours.” Full story...

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The death toll in Yemen is so high the Red Cross has started donating morgues to hospitals...

Almost a year and a half into Saudi Arabia’s U.S.-backed bombing campaign in Yemen, the humanitarian toll has become so extensive that the International Committee of the Red Cross has taken the unusual step of donating entire morgue units to Yemeni hospitals.

“The hospitals were not able to cope,” said Rima Kamal, a Yemen-based spokesperson for the Red Cross. “You could have more than 20 dead people brought into one hospital on one single day. The morgue capacity at a regular hospital is not equipped to handle this influx of dead bodies.”

“At times several dead bodies had to be stored on one shelf to avoid further decomposition,” Kamal continued. “The situation was not sustainable.”

Saudi Arabia began bombing Yemen in March 2015, after Houthi rebels took control of the capital and forced Yemen’s Saudi-backed leader, Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, into exile. The United Nations has since attributed the majority of the war’s 6,500 deaths to the Saudi coalition, which the U.S. and U.K. have resupplied with tens of billions of dollars of weapons. Full story...

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Friday, August 26, 2016

We have to talk about the boy in the ambulance...

West enables China’s suffocating embrace of the Sri Lankan economy...

With Sri Lanka still emerging from the ruins of a 26 year civil war that ended in 2009, the government in Colombo is once again turning to China as the only option at its disposal to modernize the economy by introducing sweeping infrastructural development projects.

The story of the Sri Lankan capital’s hopes to transform itself into an “international financial outpost” in the Indian Ocean—and the ups and downs this the country has faced – confirm to a great extent that while China’s role is not necessarily viewed as completely beneficial, the absence of alternate sources of foreign direct investment makes China an inevitable. It is a scenario that is playing itself out in other countries, not least Pakistan, where China is funding vast projects in what amounts of an investment vacuum.

Sri Lanka’s current president, Maithripala Sirisena, was a vocal critic of the policies of the previous president, Mahinda Rajapaksa, and his strategy of using Chinese capital to attempt to modernize the economy while reportedly enriching himself in the process. Sirisena now himself appears to have joined the pro-China bandwagon due to what many in Sri Lanka believe his inability to attract enough foreign investment from other countries as well as to shore up the central bank’s depleting foreign reserves.

In May, Sri Lanka’s reserves fell further to US$5.6 billion from US$6 billion in April, the lowest since February 2012. According to Shiran Fernando, leading economist at Frontier Research, Sri Lanka as a post-conflict nation has not attracted as much as it could in terms of foreign investments. Full story...

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Wake up! Traingate is an Illuminati conspiracy???

What really happened that day on the 11:00 train from London Kings Cross to Newcastle? Who lied, who cheated, who fudged the evidence or hid the facts when Jeremy Corbyn was filmed sitting down on the floor of a Virgin train on the 11th of August? We're far outside the realms of ordinary experience here – those normal occurrences like getting on a train and not being able to find a seat – and heading deep into a murky shadow-world, where something awaits us.

All the ingredients are there: a callous, lying politician who will do everything it takes to achieve his strange and unpopular mission – or, if you'd prefer, a campaigning MP whose fight for justice has made him the enemy of secret powers too vast to contemplate. An innocent private interest, just trying to provide the best service it can while turning an honest profit, cynically maligned by those in power – or a shadowy international conglomerate that runs our trains, our planes, our phones, our TVs, all commanded by a narcissistic billionaire from his base on a private island. A train with an indeterminate number of empty seats, people popping in and out of existence (Illuminati disintegration rays? A rip in the fabric of reality?) while Jeremy Corbyn squats, blasphemous and grinning, on the ground. How deep does the rabbit hole go?

The official narrative was this: Jeremy Corbyn boarded the 11AM train, hoping to get off at York, and couldn't find any free seats – so, like the man of the people he is, he sat on the floor between carriages, and recorded a short video pointing out the stresses in British rail infrastructure and arguing for public ownership, which quickly seeped across the internet. And you can believe that if you want, sheeple. Believe your happy lies, go back to sleep – but the fearless truth-tellers at Virgin Trains have been looking at the actual evidence, and they've found some things that They don't want you to know. Full story...

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Low-cost medicine created from Indian spices, herbs effectively fights aggressive forms of cancer, say researchers...

Indian herbs and spices are more than just a delicious way to enhance your favorite curry dishes. They've always been valued in some cultures for their healing properties, and now some of these herbs are being used to develop affordable drugs that can fight cancer with fewer side effects than traditional cancer medications.

Scientists at the BARC laboratory near Chembur are currently working hard on getting these promising solutions to the masses. One such herb is rampatri, which has earned the nickname "false nutmeg." If you're not familiar with Mangalorean or Goan cuisine, you might not be aware this spice even exists, but studies on mice show it to be a potent remedy against neuroblastoma and lung cancer. The herbal drug that is being developed from the spice reduces tumors, while boosting the effectiveness of other chemotherapy drugs that are taken concurrently.

Two of the other drugs in development include a radioprotector and a radiomodifier. The radiomodifier can enhance the effectiveness of radiotherapy while protecting the body's tissues, gastrointestinal system, lungs and lymphocytes from radiation injury. The drug shows a lot of promise, and is currently awaiting a patent, after which it will undergo clinical trials in Parel. Full story...

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'Betrayal of trust'? WhatsApp to start sharing user data with Facebook, corporations...

The world’s most popular messenger, the Facebook-owned WhatsApp, will give its users’ personal information to its parent company and plans to make it easier for businesses to contact subscribers. WhatsApp claims the changes won’t endanger privacy.

WhatsApp, which is used by over 1 billion people each month, published a statement as part of a revision of its terms and privacy policy.

“By coordinating more with Facebook, we'll be able to do things like track basic metrics about how often people use our services and better fight spam on WhatsApp. And by connecting your phone number with Facebook's systems, Facebook can offer better friend suggestions and show you more relevant ads if you have an account with them,” said the California-based company.

In practice, the benefits are less likely to be for WhatsApp, and more for data-hungry Facebook, which will know even more about its members.

"When WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook it was able to reassure users that it would remain independent," Pamela Clark-Dickson, analyst at tech consultancy firm Ovum, told the BBC. "Now it's giving Facebook phone numbers - some might say that's a betrayal of trust. In a small way, it has gone back on what it said it wouldn't do." Full story...

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The "natural" label on your food is baloney...

How an Indian writer 'returned from the dead'

For months after Perumal Murugan declared himself "dead" as a writer following vicious protests against his novel by Hindu and caste-based groups last year, he couldn't read or write.

"I became a walking corpse," says Murugan, who is considered to be one of the most accomplished writers in the Tamil language.

Then something happened. Murugan went to see his daughter in the temple town of Madurai, and spent a few days in a friend's house. There were two rooms on the first floor: one stacked with books, and the other had a bed.

"With nothing to do I lay dazed night and day," he told a gathering in Delhi on Monday evening.

"I wallowed in a dark hole without the urge to see or talk to anybody. But as I ruminated over my existence, there came a certain instant when the sluice gates were breached.

"I began to write." Full story...

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Philippines drugs war: The woman who kills dealers for a living...

When you meet an assassin who has killed six people, you don't expect to encounter a diminutive, nervous young woman carrying a baby.

"My first job was two years ago in this province nearby. I felt really scared and nervous because it was my first time."

Maria, not her real name, now carries out contract killings as part of the government-sanctioned war on drugs.

She is part of a hit team that includes three women, who are valued because they can get close to their victims without arousing the same suspicion a man would.

Since President Duterte was elected, and urged citizens and police to kill drug dealers who resisted arrest, Maria has killed five more people, shooting them all in the head. Full story...

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