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From User: Stefanie

What are you gonna do, play with your prick for another 30 years? ... George Carlin

EDITORIAL: Wave goodbye to Internet freedom
Topic: Miscellaneous 3:34 pm EST, Dec  3, 2010

EDITORIAL: Wave goodbye to Internet freedom
FCC crosses the Rubicon into online regulation

7:02 p.m., Thursday, December 2, 2010

With a straight face, Mr. Genachowski suggested that government red tape will increase the "freedom" of online services that have flourished because bureaucratic busybodies have been blocked from tinkering with the Web. Ordinarily, it would be appropriate at this point to supply an example from the proposed regulations illustrating the problem. Mr. Genachowski's draft document has over 550 footnotes and is stamped "non-public, for internal use only" to ensure nobody outside the agency sees it until the rules are approved in a scheduled Dec. 21 vote. So much for "openness."

EDITORIAL: Wave goodbye to Internet freedom

Historic Congressional Hearing on Workplace Protections for Transgender Americans
Topic: Society 11:36 pm EDT, Jun 26, 2008

WASHINGTON — The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender civil rights organization, today participated in the first-ever Congressional hearing exclusively on the issue of workplace discrimination against transgender Americans. The hearing, held by the House Education and Labor’s Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions, was titled "An Examination of Discrimination Against Transgender Americans." Coordinated by Congressional allies, including Subcommittee Chairman Rob Andrews (D-NJ), Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), as well as a coalition of GLBT groups, the hearing was intended to send a strong message to Congress about the need for fully-inclusive federal workplace protections.

Frank hasn't exactly proven himself to be an ally, but I'll let that go.

HRC Business Council Member Diego Sanchez:

"It’s an injustice that we are ever evaluated for employment based on other people’s comfort with our existence… I am before you today to affirm that transgender and transsexual people, including me, are equally human and deserve to be treated like other people."

Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese:

The transgender community, too long marginalized in American society and even within the gay, lesbian and bisexual community, has made enormous strides in recent years. There are many reasons to hope that the future holds even greater acceptance and understanding, including full equality under the law. But hope alone will not protect the transgender woman in Topeka, Kansas who loses her job and health insurance when co-workers learn that she is transitioning or the transgender man in Shreveport, Louisiana who, despite an advanced engineering degree, must work in a fast food restaurant. It is critical that Congress act to protect these, our transgender friends and family, colleagues and neighbors."

Historic Congressional Hearing on Workplace Protections for Transgender Americans

Bobby Fischer Has Died At Age 64
Topic: Miscellaneous 5:19 pm EST, Jan 18, 2008

British Chess Magazine
January 18, 2008

We have just heard from the press room in Wijk aan Zee that former world champion Bobby Fischer has died, aged 64. There is a news report (in Icelandic) at He died of kidney failure, having been hospitalised with this condition for quite some time. More news when we have it.

More at Fox News and CNN.

Bobby Fischer Has Died At Age 64

South Korean scientists clone cats that glow in the dark.
Topic: Science 4:53 pm EST, Dec 13, 2007

South Korean scientists have cloned cats by manipulating a fluorescent protein gene, a procedure which could help develop treatments for human genetic diseases, officials said Wednesday. In a side-effect, the cloned cats glow in the dark when exposed to ultraviolet beams.

"The ability to produce cloned cats with the manipulated genes is significant as it could be used for developing treatments for genetic diseases and for reproducing model (cloned) animals suffering from the same diseases as humans," it added. The technology can also help clone endangered animals like tigers, leopards, and wildcats, Kong said.

Biological hacking = no more boring pets.

Woah, cool.

South Korean scientists clone cats that glow in the dark.

Drinking Stories That Put Yours To Shame
Topic: Society 12:14 pm EDT, Oct 26, 2007

2. The London Brew-nami of 1814

The Industrial Revolution wasn't all steam engines and textile mills. Beer production increased exponentially, as well. Fortunately, the good people of England were up to the challenge and drained kegs as fast as they were made. Brewery owners became known as "beer barons," and they spent their newfound wealth in an age-old manner -- by trying to party more than the next guy.

Case in point: In 1814, Meux's Horse Shoe Brewery in London constructed a brewing vat that was 22 feet tall and 60 feet in diameter, with an interior big enough to seat 200 for dinner -- which is exactly how its completion was celebrated. (Why 200? Because a rival had built a vat that seated 100, of course.)

After the dinner, the vat was filled to its 4,000-barrel capacity. Pretty impressive, given the grand scale of the project, but pretty unfortunate given that they overlooked a faulty supporting hoop. Yup, the vat ruptured, causing other vats to break, and the resulting commotion was heard up to 5 miles away.

A wall of 1.3 million gallons of dark beer washed down the street, caving in two buildings and killing nine people by means of "drowning, injury, poisoning by the porter fumes, or drunkenness."

The story gets even more unbelievable, though. Rescue attempts were blocked and delayed by the thousands who flocked to the area to drink directly off the road. And when survivors were finally brought to the hospital, the other patients became convinced from the smell that the hospital was serving beer to every ward except theirs. A riot broke out, and even more people were left injured.

Sadly, this incident was not deemed tragic enough at the time to merit an annual memorial service and/or reenactment.

Drinking Stories That Put Yours To Shame

Gore Gets A Cold Shoulder
Topic: Science 1:43 pm EDT, Oct 15, 2007

One of the world's foremost meteorologists has called the theory that helped Al Gore share the Nobel Peace Prize "ridiculous" and the product of "people who don't understand how the atmosphere works." Dr William Gray, a pioneer in the science of seasonal hurricane forecasts, told a packed lecture hall at the University of North Carolina that humans were not responsible for the warming of the Earth.

"The human impact on the atmosphere is simply too small to have a major effect on global temperatures," Dr Gray said. He said his beliefs had made him an outsider in popular science. "It bothers me that my fellow scientists are not speaking out against something they know is wrong," he said. "But they also know that they'd never get any grants if they spoke out. I don't care about grants."

Gore Gets A Cold Shoulder

Gay Rights Backers Split on Bias Bill
Topic: Society 2:28 pm EDT, Oct 12, 2007

Associated Press Writer
AP - Friday, October 12

WASHINGTON - Rep. Barney Frank, a leading gay rights champion in Congress, on Thursday urged fellow gay rights advocates not to let their dispute over protecting transgender workers doom a job discrimination ban that could mark a major civil rights advance for gays in the workplace.

The debate over including transgender people has sharply divided gay rights activists, many of whom are trying to kill a stripped-down bill without protections for transgender workers that Frank and Democratic leaders hope will win House passage this year.

"We're not going to be split off this way," said Matt Foreman, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. "We're driven by principle. No civil rights movement has ever left a part of its community behind - and we're not about to be the first."

Frank, D-Mass., one of two openly gay members of Congress, supports transgender protections, but said they don't have the votes.

"Politically, the notion that you don't do anything until you can do everything is self-defeating," he said.

Frank said the public has more awareness because gay activists began educating people about the unfairness of prejudice based on sexual orientation a long time ago.

"These things take awhile," Frank said. "The transgender issue is of relatively recent vintage."

Legislation banning workplace discrimination against gays, lesbians and bisexuals _ but not those who have had sex-change surgery or cross-dressers _ has stalled after an outcry from the transgender community and its allies, including many gay rights organizations.

"Transgender" is an umbrella term that covers transsexuals, cross-dressers and others whose outward appearance doesn't match their gender at birth.

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would make it illegal for employers to make decisions about hiring, firing, promoting or paying an employee based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Churches and the military would be exempt.

But when Democrats took vote counts and realized the measure would fail, they substituted a new scaled-back version dropping transgender people from the bill. A second bill to ban workplace discrimination against transgenders was also drafted.

Gay rights groups that oppose a ban that leaves out transgender people have waged an aggressive lobbying campaign.

"Fighting your friends can sometimes be difficult," said Frank.

Foreman agreed.

"I never thought in a million years we would be on the opposite side of Barney Frank and it is painful," he said.

Federal law bans job discrimination based on factors such as race, gender and religion. Nineteen states and the District of Columbia have laws against sexual orientation discrimination.

However, only nine states specifically protect transgender people from discrimination: New Jersey, Minnesota, Rhod... [ Read More (0.4k in body) ]

Gay Rights Backers Split on Bias Bill

Scientists hail ‘frozen smoke’ as material that will change world.
Topic: Technology 5:16 pm EDT, Aug 20, 2007

Aerogel is nicknamed “frozen smoke” and is made by extracting water from a silica gel, then replacing it with gas such as carbon dioxide. The result is a substance that is capable of insulating against extreme temperatures and of absorbing pollutants such as crude oil.

It was invented by an American chemist for a bet in 1931, but early versions were so brittle and costly that it was largely consigned to laboratories. It was not until a decade ago that NASA started taking an interest in the substance and putting it to a more practical use.

I read something about this a few years ago, but it seems to be making headlines again.

Scientists hail ‘frozen smoke’ as material that will change world.

Website Offers to Ruin People's Lives for $20 a Month
Topic: Society 1:32 pm EDT, Aug 14, 2007

A service offering a complete "revenge package" in which people can destroy the financial status and relationships of their enemies at the click of a mouse is being offered over the Internet. For as little as $20 a month, customers of the Web site can make the credit ratings of people they dislike plummet, and even have them suspected of fraud. Victims' bank accounts can be shut down remotely and all their essential utilities cut off.

Website Offers to Ruin People's Lives for $20 a Month

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