Thursday, June 24, 2010

World Cup player slaps female reporter.

It's ironic that he's a striker. From Yahoo! Sports:
PRETORIA, South Africa – Algeria soccer player Rafik Saifi slapped a female journalist across the face as the aftermath of the United States’ dramatic World Cup victory turned ugly at Loftus Versfeld Stadium on Wednesday night.

While walking through the interview zone, Saifi spotted writer Asma Halimi, who works for Algerian newspaper Competition, and struck her with his open hand in front of dozens of witnesses. Halimi responded by striking the player in the mouth.

Saifi then threw a sports drink bottle at a wall in the interview area, as Halimi was ushered away by security staff.

Saifi came on as substitute for the last five minutes of the USA’s 1-0 victory.

“I said nothing to him and he reached over and hit me,” Halimi said to Yahoo! Sports. “So I hit him back. I said nothing to him first.”

It is understood that Saifi and Halimi had previously had a difference of opinion over an article she wrote for her newspaper.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Man builds nuclear reactor in Brooklyn warehouse.

From NY Daily News:
By day, he's a freelance computer programmer, building a Web site for fashion giant Gucci.

At night, he bikes to a nondescript Brooklyn warehouse, where he says he's building something with a bit more oomph - a homemade nuclear fusion reactor.

Meet Mark Suppes, an amateur scientist from Bedford-Stuyvesant who believes he can help save the world.

"I was inspired because I believed I was looking at a technology that could actually work to solve our energy problems," Suppes, 32, told the BBC.

Suppes says he has developed a working fusion reactor, a device that combines atoms to create energy.

Some see nuclear fusion as the holy grail of energy, a clean, cheap power source that doesn't rely on radioactive material.

Suppes' science project is legal and not considered dangerous - but people who live near the Bedford-Stuyvesant warehouse on Park Ave. where Suppes performs experiments aren't convinced.

"What if something goes wrong? There's a gas station two blocks away," said Geanine Robinson, 35, who lives in the Marcy Houses across the street from the warehouse.

Suppes began constructing his reactor two years ago, using $35,000 worth of parts he got on eBay.

He bought an additional $4,000 worth of parts with money he raised from investors and hopes to create a more sophisticated reactor.

The goal is to build a device that could produce more energy than it takes to power it - a conundrum that has hampered scientists for some 50 years.

"The attractiveness of the fusion reaction is you don't produce large quantities of radioactive materials," said Charles Sparrow, professor emeritus of chemical engineering at Mississippi State University. "But to have enough of these reactions to produce energy that's significant is what we've been working on for a long time."

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Dutch police to use "decoy Jews."

Circumcise in disguise! From the Telegraph:
Lodewijk Asscher, Amsterdam's mayor, has ordered the new decoy strategy to cut the number of verbal and physical attacks on Jews, amid fears that anti-Semitic "hate crime" is on the rise.

"Jews in at least six Amsterdam neighbourhoods often cannot cross the street wearing a skullcap without being insulted, spat at or even attacked," according to local reports.

Amsterdam police already disguise officers as "decoy prostitutes, decoy gays and decoy grannies" in operations to deter street muggings and attacks on homosexuals or the city's red light district.

Police in the Dutch city of Gouda have claimed the use of officers disguised as apparently frail old age pensioners has helped cut street crime.

"If we receive several reports of street robbery in a certain location, we send out the granny. That soon quietens things down," said a spokesman.

Secret television recordings by the Jewish broadcasting company, Joodse Omroep, broadcast at the weekend, have shocked Amsterdam, a city which prides itself on liberalism and which is home to the Anne Frank museum.

The footage showed young men, often of immigrant origin, shouting and making Nazi salutes at a rabbi when he visited different areas of the Dutch capital.

Wall Street sign worth more than Wall Street.

A vintage sign that once marked an intersection near the New York Stock Exchange has sold for $US 116,500 at auction.

Christie's said the enamel "Broad St" and "Wall St" sign was bought on Tuesday by an unidentified phone bidder.

The auctioneer had estimated its value at $US 60,000 - 80,000 before the sale. The sign stood in front of the former headquarters of J P Morgan & Co in New York.

The intersection was the scene of a 1920 Wall Street bombing that killed 38 people and injured hundreds. Shrapnel scarred the sign.

Christie's says the sign went up in the late 19th century and came down sometime after the bombing.

It was recently shown at the Museum of American Finance in New York.

Men, women jailed, flogged for mingling.

It's okay - they provide us with oil. From
Judicial officials say a Saudi court has convicted four women and 11 men for mingling at a party and sentenced them to flogging and prison terms.

The men, who are between 30 and 40 years old, and three of the women, who are under the age of 30, were sentenced to an unspecified number of lashes and one or two year prison terms each.

The fourth woman, a minor, was sentenced to 80 lashes and was not sent to prison.

The ruling was handed down overnight at a court in the northern town of Ha'il.

The officials say the police saw the group partying until dawn last month. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to talk to the media.

Saudi Arabia follows a strict interpretation of Islam that prohibits unrelated men and women from mingling.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Giant Jesus statue struck by lightning, destroyed.

This one goes out to Nick. From Dayton Daily News:
MONROE — Charred remnants remained this morning of the large Jesus statue iconic to Interstate 75 that was destroyed following an apparent lightning strike during a thunderstorm late Monday night.

The Lawrence Bishop Music Theater at Solid Rock Church on Union Road endured smoke damage, according to officials. Damages to the King of Kings statue and the theater were estimated to be around $700,000, said Monroe Fire Chief Mark Neu.

No one was injured in the blaze.

The smell of smoke surrounded the area of the statue’s charred frame, and the pond in front of it appeared murky, witnesses said.

[...] “God struck God, I like the irony. Jesus struck Jesus,” said Dawn Smith, 25, of Hamilton, who was among those standing outside the vehicles along Union Road. “I had to see it. What else are you going to do on a Monday night?”

Since its completion in 2004, the statue, which appeared to come out of a pond in front of the nondenominational megachurch, was known by multiple nicknames, including “Touchdown Jesus” because the arms and hands were raised upward. It also was known as “Big Butter Jesus” after comedian Heywood Banks referred to it as such and created a song about the statue, which he performed on radio’s popular “The Bob and Tom Show.”