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Saturday, 23 August 2014

Symbolic? Freight train carrying oil products derails, engine catches fire in central Ukraine

A freight train transporting oil products went off the rails at a train station in central Ukraine's Cherkasy Region, the Ukrainian State Emergency Service's press department told RIA Novosti on Friday. "Yes, the fact [the incident] took place," the press department's representative said. Eleven tanks carrying oil products and the train's engine caught fire. The train was transporting a total of 35 tanks. There have been no reports about injuries or deaths yet. While a part of the cargo of oil products has spilled, the area affected by it is not expanding. The authorities have not commented on possible ecological threats yet. A total of 40 vehicles and 200 personnel have been deployed for rescue efforts and to put out the fire

Electricity arcs to Ice-Bucket challengers, injuries result

Four firefighters were shocked by a nearby power line on Thursday in the process of helping students at Campbellsville University participate in the 'Ice Bucket Challenge,' a social media-fueled fundraiser for ALS research. Two of the Kentucky firefighters on the ladder of a fire truck used to dump water on the students had to be airlifted to the University of Louisville Hospital to be treated for severe burns. The first, Capt. Tony Grider, is in critical condition, according to WHAS11, while the other, Simon Quinn, has been "upgraded from serious to fair condition." "[It] appears energy arced over and ladder didn't actually hit lines. If you get within certain radius that can happen," officials said Thursday. Two other firefighters were also shocked by electricity that traveled down the ladder. "From talking with power company technicians, if you get within a distance of three or four feet, the energy that surrounds the high-voltage wire will actually arc over onto another object, in this case being the personnel occupying the bucket," Campbellsville Police Chief Tim Hazlette told WAVE. The Ice Bucket Challenge has swept across the United States in recent weeks. Participants dump ice water on themselves, promising to also donate money to research of amyothrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a nerve cell disease in the brain and spinal cord. Participants then challenge others to do the same. Much of the "challenging" has been done via social media outlets like Facebook.

Winter conditions in Montana in August

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hikers should prepare for raw, winter-like conditions ... in August! Up to 5″snow possible at 6,500 feet. Temperatures 20 degrees below normal. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- National Weather Service - Missoula, Montana - 22 August 2014 An unseasonably cold and very wet weather system will bring significant impacts to outdoor activities & backcountry recreation plans beginning today and lasting through Sunday. Temperatures in many locations will be 20 degrees below normal with widespread moderate to heavy valley rain and breezy winds. Conditions will become even more variable throughout the higher terrain where snow levels will be lowering to near 6500 ft. in Glacier National Park and 7000 ft. along the Continental Divide. Snow accumulations are expected to be light at Logan Pass, but confidence is increasing that higher elevations could see several inches or more through Saturday morning. Anyone with plans to hike or travel throughout the higher terrain of western Montana should prepare for raw, winter-like conditions. Thanks to Kenneth Lund for this link

Climate change: meteorologists forecast 'apocalyptic weather'

Comment: This article follows the line of global WARMING propaganda while it is abundantly clear that the only warming is hotspots that bring on cooling. Indeed, the weather is going to be apocalyptic due to the oncoming Ice Age, and not due to any human-caused global warming. Intense aerial turbulence, ice storms and scorching heatwaves, huge ocean waves - the world's climate experts forecast apocalyptic weather over the coming decades at a conference in Montreal that ended Thursday. The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) brought together 1,000 specialists to discuss the uncertain future of weather forecasting. A decade after the entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol, the world's focus has shifted from reducing greenhouse gas emissions linked to warming, to dealing with its consequences. "It's irreversible and the world's population continues to increase, so we must adapt," said Jennifer Vanos, a professor of atmospheric sciences at Texas Tech University. Average temperatures have increased 0.47 percent degrees Celsius so far. Scientists have predicted a two-percent rise in average temperatures by 2050. A one-degree hike translates into seven percent more water vapor in the atmosphere and because evaporation is the driving force behind air currents, more extreme weather events are expected to follow. "We'll see clouds forming faster and more easily, and more downpours," leading to flash flooding, said Simon Wang, assistant director of the Utah Climate Center. Broadly speaking, said the American researcher, rising temperatures will have a "multiplying effect on weather events as we know them." Bone-chilling temperatures that swept across North America last winter will plunge even further, while summer heatwaves and droughts will be hotter and dryer, he added. For meteorologists, the challenge will be to incorporate this "additional force" into their weather modelling, explained Wang.

Canada's wheat, canola production fall below expectations - wheat down by over a quarter

Canadian farmers are on course to produce less wheat and canola than expected, according to Statistics Canada's first report on this year's harvest. Statscan, using a farmer survey, pegged the 2014/15 all-wheat crop at 27.7 million tonnes, down 26 per cent from last year's record harvest and below the average trade expectation of 28.5 million tonnes. Canada is projected to be the fourth-largest wheat exporter this year. Canola production in the biggest global exporting country looked set to reach 13.9 million tonnes, a drop of 23 per cent from last year and less than the average trade forecast of 14.5 million tonnes. "I think the trade is going to view this report as fairly friendly [to price]," said Dave Reimann, market analyst for Cargill Ltd.'s grain marketing services division. "The canola number is going to jump out a little bit because we're looking at a tightening supply situation versus last year, and this turns the screw one more turn."

Inexcusable criminal behavior by pageant mom! Fed her teenager daughter tapeworms so she could lose weight

A pageant mother from Florida fed her teenage daughter tapeworms to help her slim down for a competition, a nurse has revealed. Maricar Cabral-Osori told how she admitted the girl to the ER with severe stomach cramps and initially suspected she was pregnant - something an ultrasound ruled out. However, the cause of the pain became clear when the nurse later found the teenager screaming over a toilet bowl full of tapeworms, she recalled on a recent episode of Untold Stories of the ER.

Officer of Kiev's 'Shakhtyorsk' battalion reveals how they're bombing Donbass towns in order to 'cleanse' them

Posted by pro-junta Ukrainian media "Hromadske-TV" Soldier of UA "Shakhtyorsk" battalion complains about storm of Ilovaysk. He explains that his unit is meant to cleanse towns after artillery or aviation bombs the hell out of there, but they didn't do it properly in Ilovaysk, so his men ran into problems.

Mission Accomplished: Moscow confirms delivery of aid to E. Ukraine, trucks return to Russia

Russia's Foreign Ministry has confirmed humanitarian aid has been delivered to the besieged city of Lugansk in eastern Ukraine. Meanwhile all trucks that delivered aid had returned to Russia. "We express our satisfaction that the Russian humanitarian aid for those in need in southeastern Ukrainian south-east has been delivered as intended.We were motivated only by the goal of helping civilian citizens in need," the statement read. The Foreign Ministry also said that they were "getting a lot of feedback from the residents of Lugansk, who were thankful for such a good attitude from the Russian part." It also underlined that the Russian representatives of the Red Cross were in close cooperation with the leadership and employees of the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC), and the ICRC has proved to be "a responsible partner."

Why mosquitos attack some, but leave others alone

Summertime calls most of us to spend time outdoors, but this means we must share our space with mosquitoes. Scientists say that about one in five people are especially appetizing targets for the little bloodsuckers... are you one of them? Of the 3,000 species of mosquitoes in the world, roughly 200 can be found in the US, which all differ in their persistence, biting habits, and ability to transmit disease. Protecting yourself from mosquito bites not only prevents that horrid itching but can also lessen your chances of contracting several mosquito-borne illnesses, such as encephalitis, yellow fever, malaria, West Nile virus, or dengue. It is estimated that between one and two million people worldwide die each year from mosquito-borne illnesses, the most common being malaria.[1] Most commercial insect repellants contain a chemical called DEET, which should be used with caution, if at all. Many studies have found DEET to have harmful effects. Fortunately, there are plenty of tricks for keeping biting bugs at bay, and they don't involve applying toxic chemicals to your skin. There are also several natural remedies that can help take the sting out of your insect bites, should your preventative efforts fail. Although the above video is highly informative, it is dangerously wrong at the end as it states that insect repellants with DEET are the only ones that work. That is simply untrue as there are many safer and effective alternatives, like thebug spray we have in our store.

Hurricane Marie forecast: Rapid intensification expected off Pacific Coast of Mexico - Category 4 expected

Marie strengthened into the eighth hurricane of the eastern Pacific hurricane season on Saturday morning. Tropical Storm Marie became the 13th named storm in a busy eastern Pacific hurricane season on Friday morning after organizing into a tropical depression on Thursday night.

Located about 345 miles southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico, Marie is expected to maintain a west-northwest heading over the next five days, remaining a safe distance from the Mexican Pacific coast. Only the tiny offshore islands of Socorro and Clarion are in its path.

Marie is expected to continue to strengthen in a favorable environment and there is an above-average likelihood of rapid intensification with this system, which could make it a major hurricane this weekend or early next week.

Marie is expected to be a large hurricane. While not directly affecting land, large swells should begin propagating to the Mexican Pacific coast this weekend, including the southern Baja Peninsula continuing into next week, then to the Southern California coast by mid-late next week, bringing a danger of rip currents to area beaches.

Current Information

So, where exactly is the cyclone's center located now? If you're plotting the storm along with us, the information depicted in the map above provides the latitude/longitude coordinates, distance away from the nearest land location, maximum sustained winds and central pressure (measured in millibars).

Infrared Satellite

This infrared satellite image shows how cold (and therefore how high) the cloud tops are. Brighter orange and red shadings concentrated near the center of circulation signify a healthy tropical cyclone.

USGS: Earthquake Magnitude 5.3 - 113km WNW of Hofn, Iceland


Event Time

2014-08-24 00:09:53 UTC

2014-08-24 00:09:53 UTC+00:00 at epicenter


64.686°N 17.351°W depth=5.4km (3.4mi)

Nearby Cities

113km (70mi) WNW of Hofn, Iceland

116km (72mi) SSE of Akureyri, Iceland

227km (141mi) ENE of Reykjavik, Iceland

229km (142mi) ENE of Kopavogur, Iceland

231km (144mi) ENE of Hafnarfjordur, Iceland

Scientific data

6.6 Magnitude earthquake shakes Valparaiso, Chile


A 6.6-magnitude earthquake rocked the region around Valparaiso, Chile on Saturday, the U.S. Geological Survey reported.No injuries or serious damage from the strong quake that occurred at 7:23 p.m. ET were reported, but electricity and telephone service was interrupted in some areas.Earthquakes in the range of 6.1 to 6.9 happen about 100 times a year, according to the Department of Geological Engineering and Sciences at Michigan Technological University. But they can cause a lot of damage in populated areas and can be felt hundreds of miles from the epicenter.

The seismological service said a preliminary report showed the quake was centered about 11 miles west-northwest of a community called Hacienda La Calera, about 67 miles northwest of the capital of Santiago. It had a depth of about 19 miles.

The largest recorded earthquake was the Great Chilean Earthquake of May 22, 1960, which had a magnitude of 9.5. Each whole-number increase on the Richter scale represents a tenfold increase in an earthquake's strength.

USGS data

The largest recorded earthquake was the Great Chilean Earthquake of May 22, 1960, which had a magnitude of 9.5. Each whole-number increase on the Richter scale represents a tenfold increase in an earthquake's strength.

via Associated Press

Current Ebola death toll set to break previous record

liberian security ebola

© REUTERS/2Tango

Liberian security forces stand in front of protesters after clashes at West Point neighbourhood in Monrovia August 20, 2014. Police in the Liberian capital Monrovia fired live rounds and teargas on Wednesday to disperse a stone-throwing crowd trying to break an Ebola quarantine imposed on their neighbourhood, as the death toll from the epidemic in West Africa hit 1,350.

The number of people dying in West Africa from the ongoing Ebola outbreak is poised to surpass the total number of people to ever have died from the virus in just 10 days, according to World Health Organization figures. Up until sometime in early 2014, the Ebola virus had killed 1,548 people since being discovered in 1976. As of Monday, Ebola had killed more than 1,350 people across West Africa in the five months since the outbreak was first declared there. Another 1,000 people could be dead by the end of October if the death rate continues at its current pace.

Despite an influx of money, materials and personnel, an average of more than 25 people died each day this August in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria, according to the latest WHO figures. That rate has nearly doubled since July, when 13 people on average died each day.

Doctors Without Borders officials said it "can't speculate on numbers and outbreak patterns," but President Joanne Liu

said last week

her organization and others will need to remain in the region for at least "six months, and I'm being, I would say, very optimistic."

Even more troubling, the ongoing crisis might be underestimated by as much as 20 percent, because many deaths and infections go unreported, either out of fear or denial, or because those infected live in hard-to-reach rural areas

, Joseph Fair, a special adviser to Sierra Leone's Health Ministry, told



Of all four countries battling outbreaks, Liberia faces the toughest road ahead. In just two days in August, 95 Liberians died and 126 were reported infected, and government officials ordered the complete quarantine of an entire neighborhood in Monrovia on Wednesday.

That sparked a violent protest

that prompted police to use tear gas and live ammunition to control the crowd.

"We have been unable to control the spread due to continued denials, cultural burying practices, disregard for the advice of health workers and disrespect for the warnings by the government," President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said on Tuesday while defending the quarantine.

The health care response has been further complicated by the rainy season, which muddies up the rural dirt roads workers traverse to reach isolated, affected communities where the ongoing outbreak and nearly all of those before it have started.

There are some

promising signs

in the fight ahead. Aid organizations and state governments have launched a massive public information campaign to raise awareness about the spread of Ebola that has helped defeat taboos, superstitions and downright denial among the public over the epidemic. The rising death toll has also likely played a part in fighting the outbreak.

"What I've seen is that there has been a clear shift," WHO Risk Communication Officer Aphaluck

Bhatiasevi told International Business Times. "In the beginning, people were not accepting that there was an outbreak. Right now people know there is Ebola. ... Their reaction is natural. People are scared, afraid and want to know what to do. ... And they recognize that when their loved ones are sick, they do need help."

Brain-washed, brain-dead puppet speaking: Polish MEP urges Europe to stop Russian ruble trading

Ryszard Czarnecki polish MEP

© wikipedia.org

Ryszard Czarnecki

To make sanctions against Russia efficient, a Polish MEP said they need to be "preventive, prophylactic sanctions," rather than reactive. Ryszard Czarnecki represents one of the countries hardest hit in the "sanctions war" between Russia and the West.

"The Russian ruble should stop being a convertible currency, the ruble should be excluded from international financial turnover," RIA quotes Czarnecki speaking at Poland's parliament.

"To counter Russia's aggressive military actions, pre-emptive sanctions should be considered," Czarnecki added.

Cutting the Russian ruble out of the international financial markets would hit the country's economy hard, he said.

"When Visa and MasterCard


to serve the customers of a Moscow bank, the effect was impressive."

Comment: Yes, it was. It has prompted the Kremlin to speed up developing its own credit card system. Soon Mastercard and Visa will be irrelevant to Russia and its trading partners.

Czarnecki also proposed to cut supplies of Russian energy, as well as control transit of Russian gas to Europe.

Poland is one of the countries hit the most by Russian countermeasures, with food exports of $1.5 billion in 2013.

Together with the Netherlands and Germany, Poland was among Russia's top-three biggest food suppliers in the EU. Earlier this week Poland's Economic Ministry sent the European Commission a request to open an official


at the WTO to examine Russia's EU food embargo.

Comment: Geez, this guy seems almost eager to cut Poland's economic throat. Russia's actions were in response to the West's initial trade sanctions. Any sensible person could see that. Poland really is living in la la land.

Economist says Eurozone austerity policies are stunningly destructive and dismal failure

snimok edrana

Stunningly destructive" and "dismal failure" is how Nobel laureates describe growth in the European Union after destructive austerity policies and the euro crisis.

Economists are casting doubt on the effectiveness of monetary policy in the 18-member eurozone, which is yet to fully shake off recession and produce sustained growth. Data

from earlier this month shows that economies have broken down, and growth has come to a standstill. The three largest economies- Germany, France, and Italy- all failed to grow.

Nobel laureate and Princeton University economist Christopher Sims warns that the euro countries hit worst by the crisis may be looking for an exit from the failed currency experiment.

"If I were advising Greece, Portugal, and Spain, I would tell them to prepare contingency plans to leave the euro," the 2011 Nobel Prize winner said.

Economist and Professor at Columbia University Joseph Stiglitz called the eurozone's efforts to recover from the debt crisis a


dismal failure" in an interview with Bloomberg TV on the sidelines of a conference in Lindau, Germany

"Now we see the enormous price that Europe is paying," Stiglitz said, adding, "hopefully the reality of this failed policy will strike."

Stiglitz is especially critical of the European Central Bank's monetary policy which has done little to tackle deflation and continues to dither on changing interest rates.

In June, the central bank


its main refinancing rate to 0.15 percent from 0.25 percent, and the deposit rate from zero to -.10 percent, the first time the ECB has seen a negative rate and the first time a major central bank has crossed the zero threshold.

Stiglitz also suggests the eurozone needs to speed up its creation of its

banking union

so debt can be borrowed on a mutual, and not individual, basis.

As early as 2014, over 6,000 banks across the eurozone will be united under the supervision of the Frankfurst-based European Central Bank.

Inflation has dropped dangerously low to 0.4 percent sparking fears about deflation, or falling prices. The European Central Bank's goal is to have 2 percent inflation.

Unemployment in the eurozone is down slightly, but at 11.5 percent still near the record 12 percent figure from last year.

MIT Economics Professor Peter Diamond, who won the Nobel Prize in 2010 - warns that work may be more and more difficult to come by.

"It is a terrible outcome, and it is surprising how little uproar there has been over policies that are so stunningly destructive," Diamond said.

The stagnation is attributed to the failed recovery from the eurozone crisis, and is also in part affected by the local Ukraine-Russia crisis. Sanctions and trade wars between Russia and the EU could cut 2 percent off eurozone GDP in the next two years

, according to Gabriel Sterne at Oxford Economics

Watch the video


National Guard begins withdrawing from Ferguson

© Reuters/Adrees Latif

National Guard troops stand at a staging area located at a shopping center parking lot in Ferguson, Missouri August 21, 2014.

Ferguson, Missouri remained relatively calm for the second night in a row. With only isolated arrests Wednesday and Thursday nights, a drawdown of the National Guard troops assigned with keeping the peace began Friday.

"[A] sense of normalcy" returned to the area along West Florissant Avenue ‒ the epicenter of

continued protests

against the police ‒ on Thursday. "People strolled to stores and city buses were back on schedule,"

USA Today


Local clergy and civic leaders worked to keep the events of the night orderly, urging protesters to remain peaceful and to return to their homes after dark, the Associated Press wrote. Demonstrations have occurred since the death of unarmed 18-year-old

Michael Brown

by Ferguson Police Officer

Darren Wilson

last Saturday.

"It was another good night,'' Missouri State Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson said at a 1 a.m. briefing. "We're heading toward a sense of peace for our community. Through 12:30 a.m., there were just seven arrests, including five for failing to disperse."

.@emilykassie got some great shots in #Ferguson last night. Very calm evening. http://ift.tt/1vsjuvB

- Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) August 22, 2014

After Wednesday night passed without outbreaks of violence, looting or

arrests of media members

, Gov. Jay Nixon (D-Mo.) ordered the National Guard to begin withdrawing Friday. The governor had

called up

the guard early Monday morning, in an effort to protect state troopers and police dealing with the often-violent demonstrations.

The Missouri Highway Patrol under Johnson ‒ an African-American ‒

took over

crowd control duties from the local Ferguson unit last Thursday after protesters denounced the department's use of excessive force and pointed to historic tension between the suburb's almost-exclusively white police department and majority-black community.

Yet when


and shifting police tactics failed to calm the unrest that brought nightly demonstrations by peaceful protesters chanting, "Hands up, don't shoot," as well as violence and looting, Nixon brought in the state's military.

The soldiers set up checkpoints in and out of the police command center, which is located in a shopping center about a quarter mile away from the site of most of the protests, according to

USA Today


"I greatly appreciate the men and women of the Missouri National Guard for successfully carrying out the specific, limited mission of protecting the Unified Command Center so that law enforcement officers could focus on the important work of increasing communication within the community, restoring trust, and protecting the people and property of Ferguson," Nixon said in a statement.

Early Wednesday morning was the last time that major unrest broke out, with

nearly 50 arrested

in the hours before US Attorney General Eric Holder arrived in the city. The head of the Justice Department

met with

Brown's parents and other residents, and reviewed the status of a

federal civil rights investigation

he had ordered into Brown's slaying.

In remarks released by the Justice Department, Holder told area leaders that, as an African-American, he can understand the community's frustration.

"I understand that mistrust. I am the attorney general of the United States. But I am also a black man," Holder said. "I can remember being stopped on the New Jersey turnpike on two occasions and accused of speeding. Pulled over.... 'Let me search your car'... Go through the trunk of my car, look under the seats and all this kind of stuff. I remember how humiliating that was and how angry I was and the impact it had on me."

Rain and high temperatures may have contributed in keeping crowds from congregating Wednesday night, but as Thursday night passed with relative calm, Johnson hinted that the city of around 21,000 residents had turned a corner.

"Isn't it a better sight ... when we can see a table with a coloring book, a box of crayons and a sock puppet, instead of weapons and Molotov cocktails?" Johnson told reporters.

"This is truly the community of Ferguson. We are headed toward a sense of peace for our community," he said.

13 die from unidentified fever in DR Congo in 10 days

map DR Congo

© AFP Photo/

Map showing two cities in DR Congo hit by an epidemic of Hemorrhagic Fever

A fever of unidentified origin has killed 13 people in the northwestern Democratic Republic of Congo since August 11, the health minister said.

"All 13 people who have died suffered from a fever, diarrhea, vomiting and, in a terminal stage, of vomiting a black matter," Dr Felix Kabange Numbi said late Thursday.

So far, about 80 people who came into contact with the deceased are being monitored at their homes, he added.

But a World Health Organization (WHO) official and the medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said Friday it was too soon to tell whether a hemorrhagic fever caused the deaths, while an epidemic of often fatal and highly contagious Ebola raged in west Africa to the north.

"Many died presenting haemorragic symptoms, but there is also serious malaria that can cause this type of symptom, or typhoid fever,"

a WHO official based in Kinshasa told AFP, asking not to be named.

"We're still waiting for biological confirmation to find out what kind of disease this is," said Amandine Colin of MSF, which has teams in the affected territory of Boende, in Equateur province.

Samples have been taken to be examined at the National Institute of Biomedical Research as well as a specialised laboratory in Gabon, Numbi said, adding that the results should come within days.

The outbreak of the Ebola virus in west Africa is the largest ever and has killed 1,350 people in Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Nigeria since March, according to the latest data released by the WHO.

Ebola was first identified in 1976 in Equateur in the former Zaire, today the DRC. The authorities have taken preventive health measures, including provisions for the safe burial of infected corpses and strict control of passengers arriving from affected countries.

Ebola is spread by contact with an infected person's bodily fluids, such as sweat and blood, and no cure or vaccine is currently available.

Food insecurity US: Thousands of poor and elderly wait in line for food in Miami under scorching sun

miami food queue

© CBS4

More than a thousand locals lined up Friday morning for several hours under the scorching sun and heat in Miami for a box full of food.

The event located at the Central Shopping Plaza at 3825 NW 7th Street started at 9:00 a.m.

Participants got a box of free vegetables, meats and bread worth $100 until 12:00 p.m. - or until supplies lasted.

Those who didn't want to stand in line could wait in their car for the drive-thru portion of the event.

Brittany Payne, a mother of three, stood in line for hours with her baby boy.

"It's something I have to do to feed my kids," said Payne.

Payne joined Miami residents lined up under the scorching sun and heat.

"It's a blessing because if it wasn't for them I couldn't eat today,

" said Payne.

Farm Share partnered up with Commissioner Francis Suarez for the massive food giveaway in a neighborhood in need.

"We are a city of tales; the 'haves' and 'have nots.' The city is growing tremendously but we also have a very poor city. The need is far greater than the supply that we have," said Suarez.

In the parking lot tents were set up and dozens of volunteers were on hand to help the residents fill their boxes with vegetables, chicken, juice and gift card to Winn-Dixie.

Many of those lined up were elderly. One man was so overcome by heat, he had to be treated and transported

.Others tried cooling themselves off with paper fans that were given out - some stood under the shade of their own umbrella.

For all the others who managed to tough it out, they said it's something they had to do


"Did you ever think you would be doing this," asked CBS4's Marybel Rodríguez to Julio Exposito who was waiting in line. "Not in my wildest dreams" said Exposito.

Damien Cabrera who was also standing in line, showed what he had received.

"So far I have vegetables, juices, chicken and a gift card," said Cabrera.

Those who were able to get food, will be taking it to a home where a box full of food makes a huge difference.

"If it wasn't for this would you have food in your refrigerator," asked Rodriguez.

"No, not right now," said Payne.

The distribution was on a first come first serve basis. By 11:15 a.m. the food had run out.

For those who were still in line Commissioner Suarez spoke with them promising another giveaway soon.

Watch the video



False flag! Former Israeli Supreme Court Justice: Israel fabricated rocket-fire to launch Deif assassination

Michael Ben Yair

Former Israeli attorney general, Michael Ben Yair, confirms IDF false flag operation leading to Deif assassination.

You'll recall a few days ago I posted a

tantalizing clue

from Haaretz' Amir Oren which noted that thirty years ago Israel fabricated an alleged terror provocation which it used to launch a military attack (or assassination) of its own. While I haven't been able to isolate which historical event he's referring to, given Oren's track record and journalistic style, I had a strong hunch he was trying to tell his readers something specific about the Deif assassination.

My guess is that he was saying that Israel fabricated the rocket fire which it claimed violated the truce agreement. After it informed the world about Hamas' violation, it was emboldened to launch the attack on the al Dalou home, where Deif and his family were sheltering. That bombing, which used American-made GBU28 bunker buster bombs delivered by U.S.-made war planes, killed 12 civilians including Deif's wife and two children. It may've also killed Deif, though no one knows for sure.

This false flag operation was clumsily mounted and will easily be exposed. It will further erode what little credibility Israel has in the world community. You remember when Israel cloned passports of citizens of allied nations as part of an assassination plot against Mahmoud al-Mabouh? In doing so, it endangered them and violated the trust and sovereignty of friends (and leading to the expulsion of a number of Mossad station chiefs)? In terms of the effect this will have on Israel's already tarnished reputation, it's a similar exercise in chicanery.

Michael Ben Yair Facebook

Now comes


from Michael Ben Yair, a former Israeli attorney general under both Yitzhak Rabin and Bibi Netanyahu, and former Supreme Court justice, that the IDF did indeed fabricate the truce violation. Under normal circumstances, I might be skeptical of the source. But in this case, Ben Yair is about as much of an insider as you can be. He posted on Facebook:

There is no ceasefire [agreement]. There are only renewed acts of hatred. Who's at fault? Good question - Hamas which wants a deal more or Israel which faked a violation in order to assassinate Mohammed Deif.

This revelation, which I believe is rock-solid, makes a mockery of Jodi Rudoren's reporting in the NY Times:

Hamas is the party that keeps extending this summer's bloody battle in the Gaza Strip, repeatedly breaking temporary truces...

I've been tweeting to her repeatedly about this pathetic representation of journalism. Do you think she'll ever recant or acknowledge her error of credulousness when offered false information and claims by official Israeli spinmeisters?

Shocking video: Israel destroys entire residential building in Gaza


Since the 9/11 attacks, no book has provided a
satisfactory answer as to WHY the attacks occurred and who was ultimately responsible for
carrying them out - until now.


Ramping up the fear: Ex-Homeland Security adviser says ISIS may have crossed US border

Joshua Katz, an Army veteran and former CIA operations officer who served as Senior Policy Advisor to the Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee said it is "very, very, true" that ISIS may have crossed the southern border. Katz reported that Gov. Rick Perry's (R-TX) recent comments that it was a "very real possibility" that ISIS had already crossed the southern border were "very, very true" on Friday's "Fox and Friends" on the Fox News Channel. "ISIS is a group that will do whatever it takes in order to accomplish its goals. It's very brutal. It's very aggressive. They're going to do anything, and if that means working with cartels, if that means working with other enlisted groups in order to attack the homeland, they will do that. Other groups like Al Qaeda, or other terrorist groups who have a desire to hit the homeland will also use that ... we have this sort of this double front aggression toward American borders" he added.

Facebook given four weeks to respond to 'largest privacy class action in Europe'

© AFP/Dieter Nagl

Austrian law student Max Schrems

Facebook has been given four weeks to respond to a class action, launched against it by an Austrian activist and supported by 60,000 users. The suit claims Facebook violated users' privacy, by cooperating with the NSA's PRISM program.

The class action initiated by Max Schrems, an Austrian lawyer, data privacy activist and founder of Europe vs. Facebook group has passed its first review in the Vienna Regional Court.

Facebook Ireland, which runs the social network's activities outside the US and Canada, has been given four weeks to respond to the action.

Vienna Court has reviewed our Class Action. @facebook ordered to respond within 4 weeks. http://t.co/UDcaMszwT4#EUDataP#PRISM#Datenschutz

- europe-v-facebook (@europevfacebook) August 21, 2014

"The order is very likely on the way to Facebook. The first step in the legal procedure is hereby taken," said a statement by Europe vs. Facebook on Thursday

The group has described the suit, joined by 25,000 users, as "the largest privacy class action in Europe" and specified that 35,000 more users have registered on


expressing their will to join the action should it expand.

Facebook Ireland will have an opportunity to ask the court to extend the time frame for its reply to eight weeks. If the counter-statement from the social network never arrives, then the court will be able to make a judgment in its absence.



the class action at the beginning of August. He claims Facebook practices are in violation of the European data protection law.

"For this lawsuit we have chosen basic or obvious violations of the law: The privacy policy, participation in the PRISM program, Facebook's graph search, apps on Facebook, tracking on other web pages (e.g. via the 'like buttons'), 'big data' systems that spy on users or the non-compliance with access requests," Schrems earlier wrote on the Facebook Class Action website.

The activist and the main plaintiff in the suit wants Facebook, which has 1.32 billion active users and is worth around $195 billion, to pay out €500 to each supporter of the class action, in case his allegations are supported in court. Compensation is not the Schrems' ultimate goal: that is to force Facebook to change its policies to ensure users' personal data is protected.

Facebook Ireland has not yet commented on the legal action.

It's not Schrem's first attempt to challenge US web giants for alleged violations of private data.

His Europe vs. Facebook challenged the Irish Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (ODPC) a year ago by demanding it to probe into the activities of US companies, including Facebook, to assess their involvement in the NSA spy scandal.

The watchdog


the appeal. The group then took its legal battle to the Irish High Court, which referred the case to the European Court of Justice in July.

Southeast U.S. on alert for Tropical Storm Cristobal

Tropical Storm Cristobal is expected to take shape later this weekend, then impact the Atlantic beaches and potentially other parts of the southeastern United States next week.

All interests across the southeastern U.S., the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands should be keeping a close eye on the area of disturbed weather in the southwestern Atlantic.

The development of a tropical depression or storm has failed to occur yet due to the obstacles of dusty air, disruptive wind shear and, more recently, interaction with the Caribbean Islands.

As conditions become more conducive, the disturbed area should organize into Tropical Storm Cristobal later in the weekend.

Regardless of when Cristobal takes shape, torrential downpours, gusty squalls and rough surf will continue to spread from Hispaniola and

Puerto Rico

to the Turks and Caicos and southern and central Bahamas this weekend. Some drenching showers and thunderstorms will even reach eastern Cuba.

"The downpours will raise the risk of flash flooding, road washouts and mudslides, but can also ease dry conditions on some of the islands," stated AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.

Damaging winds will become an increasing concern over the Turks and Caicos and Bahamas as Cristobal takes shape.

TSA admits allowing illegal aliens to enter U.S. using easily reproducible forms of ID

TSA agent

© Reuters/Brad Graverson

A new letter from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) admits that illegal aliens were being allowed to board planes using Notice to Appear forms they received after entering the U.S. illegally. The r

evelation directly contradicts a TSA statement last month denying such allegations to various media outlets

, including Breitbart News. In July Breitbart Texas Managing Director Brandon Darby

broke the news

that the TSA was letting illegal aliens board planes using Notice to Appear forms; subsequently, a TSA spokesperson publicly

attacked Darby

on Twitter, insisting that his report was "completely wrong."

The newly-surfaced TSA letter was penned on August 7, according to the

Gateway Pundit

. It was reportedly sent from the TSA to Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-TX), a member of the Border Security Caucus. The letter confirms that illegal aliens are being allowed to board planes using a Notice to Appear form (also known as I-862), as Darby revealed in July

Hector Garza, a spokesman for the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC) told Darby that

Notice to Appear forms can "easily be reproduced or manipulated on any home computer

. The Notice to Appear form has no photo, anyone can make one and manipulate one. They do not have any security features, no watermark, nothing. They are simply printed on standard copy paper based on the information the illegal alien says is the truth."

According to the Gateway Pundit, the August 7 letter from the TSA admitted, "If a passenger does not have an acceptable form of identification, then the passenger is allowed to present two other forms of identification. One of the two forms of identification must bear the individual's name and other identifying information such as photo, address, phone number, social security number, or date of birth. TSA may assess a variety of government issued documents to establish passenger identity. The I-862 form may be used along with another form of identification in this instance."

It continued, "If a passenger can only present a Form I-862, TSA will attempt to establish the passenger's identity through DHS partner Components, such as U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)."

Despite the letter's admissions, the TSA had previously insisted that Darby's report--which detailed the acceptance of Notice to Appear forms at airports--was untrue.

Ross Feinstein, a press secretary and spokesman of the TSA, took to Twitter to attack Darby and his sources at the NPBC. After claiming that Darby's report was "completely wrong," Feinstein falsely complained that no one had "contacted us for a statement and/or info. before publishing story."

Darby responded to Feinstein, showing a screenshot which proved that he had, indeed, attempt to reach out to the agency via email prior to the publishing of his article.

The TSA continued to deny Darby's allegations. The agency said in a statement to

multiple news outlets

, "These reports are false.

A Notice to Appear, issued by the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR), is not an acceptable form of ID at the TSA checkpoint."

Reacting to the TSA's letter, Border Patrol agent Garza told Breitbart Texas, "Ross Feinstein and the TSA higher ups should apologize to the NBPC and to Brandon Darby for reporting the truth. ... The men and women of the Border Patrol reported this very serious situation directly to the TSA managers at the Laredo International Airport, but their concerns were ignored by the TSA. Soon after that, the NBPC was notified by Border Patrol agents of what was taking place at the Laredo International Airport and how TSA was allowing illegal aliens to board planes with only a notice to appear and without verifiable identification."

He continued, "The NBPC informed the American public of this very serious situation through a news article with Breitbart Texas Managing Director Brandon Darby. If anyone is saying the truth, it is the men and women of the Border Patrol, the NBPC and reporter Brandon Darby for reporting the truth."

"If the TSA and Ross Feinstein were allowed to continue lying to the American Public, it could have resulted in the next terrorist attack on American soil. We hope that terrorists did not enter our country while TSA was violating these security protocols and while Ross Feinstein continued to deny their actions," Garza said. "Shame on Ross Feisnten and the TSA for lying to the American Public and for saying that border patrol agents, the NBPC and Brandon Darby were liars."

The most recent incident is not the first time that the Department of Homeland Security has publicly attacked Darby and the NBPC. On

June 4th

Breitbart Texas' Managing Director Brandon Darby broke the news that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) would be relocating illegal immigrants from Texas to California. Within moments of that story being published, the official Twitter account of the San Diego CBP

tweeted at Darby

, insisting the report was "erroneous" and asking for it to be removed from the internet.

Days later the San Diego CBP

deleted the tweet

from their official account.

Subsequent reports, outlining plans to fly immigrants to Southern California, proved CBP had indeed planned the relocation all along.

Cash raised for Ferguson cop who killed Mike Brown surpasses donation for the victim

Online fundraisers for Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson surpassed the amount of money raised for Michael Brown's family as Wilson supporters gathered in an afternoon rally.

Supporters of Wilson, the police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., gathered Saturday at Barney's Sports Pub in south St. Louis.

"Many of us have received death threats toward ourselves and our families," the speaker said, wearing sunglasses, paint beneath her eyes and a baseball cap. "We will not hide. We will no longer live in fear ... If you support Darren Wilson, make your voices heard."

She refused to give the media her name, saying "You want my name? I am Darren Wilson. We are Darren Wilson."

The speaker said the media has shown a strong bias against Wilson supporters, drawing loud applause from the crowd.

"We share the united belief that officer Wilson's actions on Aug. 9 were warranted and justified and he has our unwavering support," the woman said.

Another rally was planned for Sunday.

A crowd-funding page created for Wilson raised $235,010 from 5,902 people before organizersstopped accepting donations Friday after surpassing their goal of $100,000 in four days. The group then opened a new fundraising page, which already has nearly $75,000.

This amount surpasses the more than $200,000 raised in

support of the Michael Brown Memorial Fund.

According to the page, which was set up by Brown family lawyer

Benjamin Crump

, "the funds will assist his family with costs that they will acquire as they seek justice on Michael's behalf."

The Support Darren Wilson group, which has more than 58,000 likes on Facebook, encouraged supporters who could not attend the rally to "blow up some Twitter accounts" with photos of supporters and the hashtag #‎iamdarrenwilson.

Icelandic Bárðarbunga volcanic eruption begins

From the Icelandic Met Office

It is believed that a small subglacial lava-eruption has begun under the Dyngjujökull glacier. The aviation color code for the Bárðarbunga volcano has been changed from orange to red. Image follows.

Volcanic Eruption

© Icelandic Met Office

Webcam image showing either soil/dust being blown into the air by gas venting or ash being ejected.

Bárðarbunga volcano

© WattsUpWithThat

In our digital world, are young people losing the ability to read emotions?

© Stephen Nowicki

Students in the study looked at photos and were tested on their ability to recognize the emotions of those pictured.

Children's social skills may be declining as they have less time for face-to-face interaction due to their increased use of digital media, according to a UCLA psychology study.

UCLA scientists found that

sixth-graders who went five days without even glancing at a smartphone, television or other digital screen did substantially better at reading human emotions than sixth-graders from the same school who continued to spend hours each day looking at their electronic devices.

"Many people are looking at the benefits of digital media in education, and not many are looking at the costs," said Patricia Greenfield, a distinguished professor of psychology in the UCLA College and senior author of the study. "Decreased sensitivity to emotional cues -- losing the ability to understand the emotions of other people -- is one of the costs. The displacement of in-person social interaction by screen interaction seems to be reducing social skills."

The research will be in the October print edition of

Computers in Human Behavior

and is already published online.

The psychologists studied two sets of sixth-graders from a Southern California public school: 51 who lived together for five days at the Pali Institute, a nature and science camp about 70 miles east of Los Angeles, and 54 others from the same school. (The group of 54 would attend the camp later, after the study was conducted.)

The camp doesn't allow students to use electronic devices -- a policy that many students found to be challenging for the first couple of days. Most adapted quickly, however, according to camp counselors.

At the beginning and end of the study, both groups of students were evaluated for their ability to recognize other people's emotions in photos and videos. The students were shown 48 pictures of faces that were happy, sad, angry or scared, and asked to identify their feelings.

They also watched videos of actors interacting with one another and were instructed to describe the characters' emotions. In one scene, students take a test and submit it to their teacher; one of the students is confident and excited, the other is anxious. In another scene, one student is saddened after being excluded from a conversation.

The children who had been at the camp improved significantly over the five days in their ability to read facial emotions and other nonverbal cues to emotion, compared with the students who continued to use their media devices.

Researchers tracked how many errors the students made when attempting to identify the emotions in the photos and videos. When analyzing the photos, for example, those at the camp made an average of 9.41 errors at the end of the study, down from 14.02 at the beginning. The students who didn't attend the camp recorded a significantly smaller change. For the videos, the students who went to camp improved significantly, while the scores of the students who did not attend camp showed no change. The findings applied equally to both boys and girls.

You can't learn nonverbal emotional cues from a screen in the way you can learn it from face-to-face communication,"

said lead author Yalda Uhls, a senior researcher with the UCLA's Children's Digital Media Center, Los Angeles.

"If you're not practicing face-to-face communication, you could be losing important social skills."

Students participating in the study reported that they text, watch television and play video games for an average of four-and-a-half hours on a typical school day. Some surveys have found that the figure is even higher nationally, said Uhls, who also is the Southern California regional director of Common Sense Media, a national nonprofit organization.

Greenfield, director of the CDMC, considers the results significant, given that they occurred after only five days.

She said the implications of the research are that people need more face-to-face interaction, and that even when people use digital media for social interaction, they're spending less time developing social skills and learning to read nonverbal cues.

"We've shown a model of what more face-to-face interaction can do," Greenfield said. "Social interaction is needed to develop skills in understanding the emotions of other people."

Uhls said that emoticons are a poor substitute for face-to-face communication: "We are social creatures. We need device-free time."

Journal Reference:

Yalda T. Uhls, Minas Michikyan, Jordan Morris, Debra Garcia, Gary W. Small, Eleni Zgourou, Patricia M. Greenfield. ''Five days at outdoor education camp without screens improves preteen skills with nonverbal emotion cues''.

Computers in Human Behavior

, 2014; 39: 387 DOI:


469 Gaza children killed, over 370,000 need 'psychosocial aid' - UNICEF

© Reuters / Mohammed Salem

At least

469 children have been killed and over 3,000 injured in Gaza since the start of the Israeli offensive

, a senior UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) official said, adding that

more than 370,000 Palestinian kids require "immediate psychosocial first aid


Nine children have died in Gaza violence since Wednesday, the chief of UNICEF's Gaza field office, Pernilla Ironside, said at a press conference on Thursday in New York.


There isn't a single family in Gaza who hasn't experienced personally death, injury, the loss of their home, extensive damage, displacement

," Ironside said.

© AFP Photo / Mohammed Abed

A Palestinian woman cares for wounded children at the hospital following an Israeli air strike on a house in Gaza City

She stressed that while 373,000 Palestinian children are in need of "immediate psychosocial first aid,"UNICEF only has 50 psychologists and counselors on the ground in Gaza. Those specialists were able to reach just 3,000 children.


The impact has truly been vast, both at a very physical level, in terms of casualties, injuries, the infrastructure that's been damaged, but also importantly, emotionally and psychologically in terms of the destabilizing impact that not knowing, not truly feeling like there is anywhere safe place to go in Gaza,

" Ironside said.

"All they want is a sense of safety," she added. "They basically just want it to stop."

UNICEF estimated thatat least 219 schools have been damaged by Israeli airstrikes, while 22 were completely destroyed.

To demonstrate the extent of the damage in Gaza, Ironside estimated that

it could take up to 18 years to rebuild the 17,000 housing units that were damaged in the conflict and in light of the ongoing blockade of the region limiting the movement of goods and people.

© AFP Photo / Said Khatib

Palestinian children make their way through the rubble of a building destroyed following an Israeli military strike in Rafah in the south of the Gaza Strip on August 21, 2014.

Israeli-Palestinian rocket fire resumed on Tuesday after Gaza truce talks broke down with both Israel and Palestine threatening to quit peace talk negotiations.

On Wednesday, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned "in the strongest terms" the breach of the Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire, adding that he is "gravely disappointed" by the renewal of hostilities in Gaza.

"The Secretary-General reminds both sides of their responsibility not to let the situation escalate. The hopes of the people in Gaza for a better future and the hopes of the people in Israel for sustainable security rest on the talks in Cairo," the statement said.

The overall death toll in Gaza has exceeded 2,000 since Israel's government launched operation Protective Edge on July 8.

Huge water loss in Western U.S. causes Earth's crust to rise

Western US crust uplift

© Shawn Lawrence, UNAVCO

Plate Boundary Observatory GPS station P466, located in the Inyo Mountains near Lone Pine, California. P466 is mounted on a deep-drilled braced monument, and its displacement data were used in the determination of water loading changes in the western U.S.

About 63 trillion gallons of water have been lost to drought in the western United States, enough to blanket the region with 4 inches of water, according to a study published Thursday.

Researchers at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, arrived at the conclusion by measuring the level of the earth's crust with a network of GPS stations that is normally used to predict earthquakes.

When water is lost because of a lack of rain and snow, the earth's crust rises. The sensors show that the earth's crust has risen an average of

4 millimeters in the western United States since last year and as much as 15 millimeters in the California mountains


The earth's crust typically sags in the winter and spring, weighed down by water, and it rises during the dry season in summer and fall, said co-author Adrian Borsa. The authors removed those seasonal factors when analyzing about a decade of data from GPS stations within the National Science Foundation's Plate Boundary Observatory.

Last year, an area stretching west of the Rocky Mountains witnessed a "massive uplift," Borsa said. The rise was most striking in the Sierra Nevada mountains and California coastal regions, but it was spread over the entire region, unlike previous years when some pockets have gone up and others went down.


It's just amazing to us that this covers the entire western United States

," Borsa said.

The loss of water since last year is equivalent to the annual loss from the Greenland Ice Sheet, according to the study published in the journal Science.

The findings do not appear to raise any serious concerns about earthquake hazards, said Borsa, who hopes authorities use the measurements as a tool to measure the impact of drought. The findings cannot be compared to the severity of earlier droughts because the measurements were not used then.

Monsanto refund demanded by Brazilian farmers for GMO crop failure

Brazilian farmers are asking Monsanto and other producers of pest-resistant corn seeds to reimburse them for money spent on additional pesticides when the bugs killed the crops instead of dying themselves. The so-called BT corn seeds are genetically modified to produce an insecticide that will kill the corn leafworm (also known as the southern grassworm). After the insect eats the corn, the toxin inside paralyzes the insect's digestive system, forming a hole in the gut wall. This forces the bug to stop eating within a few hours, and subsequently starve to death, according to a Colorado State University fact sheet. The GMO seeds are produced by four major manufacturers: Dow Agrosciences, DuPont, Monsanto and Sygenta AG. In Brazil, however, the farmers say that the seeds did not deliver as promised.

Flooding shuts roads in central Sweden

Updated: Sections of the highway in Värmland have been closed off due to flooding, and several trains are standing still. Authorities say the situation will get worse before it gets better. * Floods wash into third day * Rain predicted to continue into weekend * Emergency workers say floods at "catastrophic levels" * Kristinehamn in Värmland flooded on Wednesday night * Those who evacuated in Getinge may now return Rain continued to bucket down over parts of Sweden on Wednesday night, adding the town of Kristinehamn, Värmland, to the list of towns partially under water. "We got an alarm that a man was stuck in a car in more than metre-high water," Lars Eidwall, emergency service worker in Kristinehamn, told news agency TT. "When we arrived he had managed to climb out, but the car was filled with water." Heavy rain during the night closed several roads in Kristinehamn, including parts of major highway E18.

"Immune cytokine model of depression" suggests chronic inflammation as root cause

The idea that depression and other mental health conditions are caused by an imbalance of chemicals (particularly serotonin and norepinephrine) in the brain is so deeply ingrained in our collective psyche that it seems almost sacrilegious to question it. Of course Big Pharma has played a role in perpetuating this idea. Antidepressant drugs, which are based on the chemical imbalance theory, represent a $10 billion dollar market in the U.S. alone. According to the CDC, 11 percent of Americans over 12 years old take antidepressants, and they are the second-most prescribed medications (after cholesterol-lowering drugs). Doctors wrote a staggering 254 million prescriptions for antidepressants in 2010. (1) Yet as popular as this theory has become, it is riddled with problems. For example: Reducing levels of norepinephrine, serotonin and dopamine does not produce depression in humans, even though it appears to do so in animals.Although some depressed patients have low levels of serotonin and norepinephrine, the majority do not. Several studies indicate that only 25 percent of depressed patients have low levels of these neurotransmitters.Some depressed patients have abnormally high levels of serotonin and norepinephrine, and some patients with no history of depression have low levels of them. (2)What if depression isn't caused by a "chemical imbalance" after all? More specifically, what if depression itself is not a disease, but a symptom of an underlying problem? That is exactly what the most recent research on depression is telling us. A new theory called the "Immune Cytokine Model of Depression" holds that depression is not a disease itself, but instead a "multifaceted sign of chronic immune system activation." (3) To put it plainly: depression may be a symptom of chronic inflammation.