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Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
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Journal Archives

Night parrot confirmed alive again after 30 years?

A LIVE NIGHT PARROT has reportedly been photographed in western Queensland for the first time since the species was discovered more than 150 years ago.

With a loosely estimated population of less than 250 individuals across central Australia, the last living night parrot specimen was collected in 1912 at Nicol Spring in Western Australia.

The species has since famously avoided detection, save a handful of sightings and two dead specimens, the most recent of which was a decapitated young female picked up by a ranger in Queensland's Diamantina National Park in 2006.

A pair of biologists reported seeing several night parrots at a well in the Pilbara, WA, in 2005, but they were not able to photograph them or collect samples.



Sunday's Doonesbury- We're Still There

After Stonewall: The First-Ever Pride Parades, In Vintage Photos

by Maria Popova

In the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, violent protests and street demonstrations took over the streets of New York after a police raid of Stonewall Inn, the now-legendary Greenwich Village gay bar. Known as the Stonewall Riots, these protests are commonly considered the tipping point at which the LGBT community coalesced into political cohesion and the birth of the modern gay rights movement. On that June morning, equality for all seemed a distant but necessary dream — a dream that has finally become reality a day shy of 44 years later.

In Stonewall: The Riots That Sparked the Gay Revolution (public library), David Carter contextualizes the remarkable delta of progress that the Stonewall Riots precipitated:

It was only a few decades ago — a very short time in historical terms — that the situation of gay men and lesbians was radically different from what it is today. At the end of the 1960s, homosexual sex was illegal in every state but Illinois. Not one law — federal, state, or local — protected gay men or women from being fired or denied housing. There were no openly gay politicians. No television show had any identifiably gay characters. When Hollywood made a film with a major homosexual character, the character was either killed or killed himself. There were no openly gay policemen, public school teachers, doctors, or lawyers. And no political party had a gay caucus.

In 1970, to mark the first anniversary of the Stonewall uprisings, the very first Gay Pride marches took place in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Chicago.

Digging through the New York Public Library archives, I unearthed some goosebump-inducing photos of the first-ever Pride parades around the world:



Danziger Toon: Voting Rights

Sums up the attitude of all too many folks I run into down here in Savannah...

Toon- Cutting Carbon the Healthy Way

Luxury Hotel Being Built In An Abandoned Chinese Quarry

by Megan Willett

Construction has officially begun on a £345 million ($528 million) resort project in an abandoned quarry in China's Songjiang District, The Daily Mail reports.

Known as the Songjiang Shimao Hotel, the resort is part of a larger development plan to turn the area into a theme park, according to Li Xuyang, a senior manager for the Shimao Group.

Atkin, the British firm that designed the hotel, wanted to make sure it blended in with the landscape. They are planning to build an eco-friendly roof with grass and trees that uses natural resources for power.

Two of the building's 19 stories will be underwater with aquarium-style walls, so guests can look out into the quarry. The other 17 stories will be built inside the cave, which is at the base of the Tianmenshan Mountain, according to The Daily Mail.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/chinese-quarry-hotel-under-construction-2013-6

What it looks like to orbit Mars

At link, after annoying ad video. But interesting. Very elliptical orbit.

Imagine you’re on a probe hurtling around the Red Planet. The Mars Webcam (VMC camera) on board the European Space Agency's Mars Express captured many images during a full orbit, which have been sequenced to create this video.


Zing! Snowden's Ideal Hiding Place

How police track your driving

At a rapid pace, and mostly hidden from the public, police agencies throughout California have been accumulating millions of license-plate readings from devices placed atop patrol cars and feeding them into intelligence centers operated by local, state and federal law enforcement, the Center for Investigative Reporting has found.

With heightened concern over secret intelligence operations at the National Security Agency, the localized effort to track drivers highlights the extent to which the government has committed to collecting large amounts of data on people who have done nothing wrong.

A year ago, the Northern California Regional Intelligence Center — one of dozens of law enforcement intelligence-sharing centers set up after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 — signed a $340,000 agreement with the Silicon Valley firm Palantir to construct a database of license plate records flowing in from police using the devices across 14 counties, documents and interviews show. The extent of the center’s data collection has never been revealed.

Law enforcement says license-plate reading has been a boon to its efforts to spot people wanted on outstanding warrants, recover stolen cars and even arrest murder suspects. Privacy advocates say the price is unacceptably high — millions of people who have done nothing wrong, having their movements recorded by the government.


The Cancer is pervasive.

Shepard Fairey approves of NSA parodies of his Obama 'Hope' poster

By David Ng
June 27, 2013, 8:00 a.m.
In the weeks since renegade National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden revealed that the U.S. government is harvesting phone and online data, a humorous series of Internet memes has been taking comic aim at artist Shepard Fairey's famous "Hope" image of Barack Obama.

The parodies, which have appeared on numerous blogs and news sites in recent weeks, deconstruct Fairey's image, giving it a biting, NSA-themed spin. In one parody, Obama is shown wearing headphones with the words "Yes we scan" emblazoned above him and with text circling his head that reads: "United we progress toward a perfectly monitored society."

In another send-up, the "Hope" image is captioned with the text, "Yes, we can... read your emails."

Here is Fairey's full response to The Times:

"I originally supported Obama vigorously because his proclaimed policy positions aligned with my beliefs. I have never been an unconditional Obama supporter or cheerleader, so I'm pleased to see people subvert my Obama images as a way to critique him and demonstrate the wide gap between some of his promises and actions. Subversion of well known symbols and images for social commentary has long been a technique in my repertoire, so I'm glad to see it in the work of others. I have even subverted my own Obama image in support of Occupy. There are no sacred cows, and I agree that Obama needs to be called out on an NSA program that over-reaches to the extreme and shouldn't be secret. We live in a remix culture and remix is a valuable form of communication when the re-configuration makes a strong statement."

The artist used stronger language in a recent blog post he wrote in which he addresses the NSA scandal: "The extent of Obama’s spying is unacceptable and I feel sickened and betrayed by someone I dedicated a huge amount of time, energy, and money to support based on the way he presented his views as the antithesis of Bush's."

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