Thursday, December 18, 2008

Conservationists Warn Koalas Could Be Headed For Extinction



Due to the economy, the Christmas season doesn't seem to be quite as spirited this year. Therefore, I think it's time to take drastic action and replace Santa Claus with a really hot and busty "Santa Maria Claus." The bottom line is Santa simply isn't hot enough to be a public figure in this day and age. If you were a kid, would you rather have a fat old man deliver your presents or the hot Santa Maria Claus with her giant holiday hooters hanging out? And we could all save money on milk and cookies because Santa Maria would provide the milk ... zing!

#20 ASU Cheerleader - This year, this ASU Cheerleader says that she's thankful that she's hot enough that she'll never have to work hard a day in her life.

#19 Jacksonville Jaguars Cheerleaders - All they want for Christmas is their two front boobs and a new Jaguars defense line.

#18 Tennessee Titans Cheerleader - She told Santa that she hopes Kerry Collins doesn't fall off the wagon and drink too much eggnog this Christmas.

#17 Dolphins Cheerleaders - They asked Santa to give Chad Pennington a stronger throwing arm and Joey Porter a muzzle.

#16 Utah Jazz Dancers - They all chipped in and got Mehmet Okur an electric razor so he can finally separate his unibrow.

#15 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Redhead Cheerleader - She asked Santa for her favorite Santa outfit, the "Tampa Two-Piece" and that's exactly what she got.

#14 Utah Jazz Dancers - This Christmas, the Jazz dancers still don't understand what the whole Mormon thing is really all about and they're also still incredibly confused about why their team is called the "Jazz."

#13 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleaders - They're thankful that the weather in Tampa allows them to wear mini-skirts everyday.

#12 Sacramento Kings Dancers - They wished for Reggie Theus to get fired this Christmas and it already came true.

#11 Tennessee Titans Cheerleaders - They're hoping Albert Haynsworth's knee gets better real soon and that Jack Daniels is not also affected by the economy.

#10 Blazers Dancer - She asked Santa to give Greg Oden new hands, feet, knees and ankles this Christmas.

#9 Washington Redskins Cheerleaders - They asked Santa to make Daniel Synder start spending his money more wisely.

#8 Tampa Bay Cheerleader - She did her part this Christmas by spreading her holiday cleavage.

#7 Houston Rockets Dancers - All they want for Christmas is for Rockets mascot Clutch to enter mascot rehab.

#6 Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders - They asked Santa to give Tony Romo more footballs to pass around to their prima donna receivers.

#4 ASU Cheerleaders Rock The Santa Hats - They're spending this holiday season spreading "shocker" cheer.

#3 Charlotte Bobcats Cheerleader - She's hoping that Adam Morrisson's mustache will finally grant the Bobcats franchise the power that it desires.

#2 Tennessee Titans Cheerleader - She asked Santa to give Lendale White NutriSystem for Christmas this year.

#1 Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleader - She's doing her part to turn Jon Gruden's frowns upside down.

Baby girl died while mother went out drinking just four months after social services stopped working with family

By Jaya Narain

Baby P

This case has echoes of the tragic fate of Baby P

A baby died only four months after social services decided they no longer needed to work with her troubled mother.

The girl, aged one, and her three young brothers had been left in the care of their 13-year-old sister while the mother went out drinking.

When she returned home at about 1.30am, the teenager told her the baby was having 'severe problems breathing' - but no one called an ambulance until an hour later.

The baby died in hospital and was found to have had a virus, though doctors concluded it should not have killed her.

In an echo of the Baby P case, the children had been taken to hospital with injuries on six separate occasions but care workers took no action.

In fact, the mother, who cannot be named, had been known to the authorities in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, for six years. She was known to have been a victim of domestic violence and there were claims she used drugs.

Social workers visited the home found it to be 'dirty, chaotic and overcrowded' and voiced concerns that it was unsafe for young children.

Social workers said that a child protection plan should be agreed to protect the baby and her siblings, but managers decided a voluntary agreement with the mother would suffice.

They stopped working with the family in April last year after the mother told them conditions had improved and she was coping well.

Details of the case were revealed in a report released by the Wakefield and District Safeguarding Children Board.

The panel found there was no evidence to suggest the authorities could have prevented the baby's death, but concluded that a more ' intensive programme of intervention' might have enhanced supervision of the mother.

Baby P died after suffering more than 50 different injuries at the hands of his mother and two men at his home in North London. The boy, who was on the child protection register, was abused over eight months in which he was seen 60 times by care workers.

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Payment in loo: Toilet paper cheque lands man in court

By Andrew Levy

It was a very British protest - cocking a snook at overbearing authorities while staying within the law.

But Dick Roper's glow of pleasure at using two sheets of toilet paper to write a cheque for a parking ticket was short lived.

Although Her Majesty's Court Service said they would accept the £30 cheque, they demanded an extra £15 to cover the fee for cashing it.

When the 63-year-old grandfather refused, he was dragged to court for non-payment of a fine.


Feeling flush: Mr Roper has been spared a £15 charge for using a toilet paper cheque to pay a parking fine

He took advantage of his day in court by reading out a letter he sent to the Court Service in which he described the police community support officer who slapped a ticket on his car as a 'snake'.

Everyone, including the judge, was laughing as he described the man 'slithering' home at the end of the day 'to digest the evil he had done'.

In the end, Mr Roper scored a victory for common sense when District Judge David Cooper asked him if he would mind sitting at the back of Sudbury Magistrates Court for the day as 'punishment'.

The retired businessman agreed, after Mr Cooper assured him it would not mean a criminal record, adding: 'I can't say it will be particularly enlightening for you but it will discharge your debt to society.'

The father-of-two's battle against bureaucracy began on September 30 when he parked near his home in Long Melford, near Sudbury in Suffolk.

The front of his car was in a bay but the rear end was outside.

At 9pm, PCSO John Woodgate - nicknamed 'the Terminator' by locals - gave him a £30 fixed penalty notice.


Paper trail: A replica of the toilet paper cheque that Mr Roper sent to Suffolk Constabulary

Mr Roper wrote the unorthodox cheque but in a covering letter said he would pay twice the amount to charity if his ticket was waived - an offer which was refused.

Mr Roper was told not to speak to the press after the sentence as he was 'in custody' but he was released just 70 minutes later.

He said: 'Mr Cooper entered into the spirit of things. I don't consider it a punishment. It's a victory for common sense, really.

'At the end of the day, it wasn't me refusing to pay. It was them refusing to accept it.

'One should be entitled to make a peaceful protest when you think what's happened to you is unjustified.'

Mr Roper, who was not legally represented, told the court he refused to pay the £15 'special presentation' fee for the cheque to be cashed on the grounds that he had always had to swallow the charges imposed when banking and writing cheques on business accounts.

When the district judge asked what he would have done if a customer had paid with a cheque written on toilet paper, he replied: 'I would pay the cheque in and send them a receipt on toilet paper.'

Judge Cooper has a reputation for unusual judgments. In October, he spared a woman from jail after hearing she had bought a box of chocolates for a police officer she had assaulted.

He has also ordered a man who kept pestering women to keep away from a train station and banned a drunken lout from every pub in England and Wales for a year.

Original here

Child Named Hitler Has Problem Getting Birthday Cake

Photo credit: dan taylor | Creative Commons License


A New Jersey family who named their child after Adolf Hitler is having problems getting a birthday cake made for their 3-year-old.

Heath and Deborah Campbell said their local ShopRite supermarket in Greenwich Township, N.J., refused to personalize a cake for their son, Adolf Hitler Campbell.

"We believe the request ... to inscribe a birthday wish to Adolf Hitler is inappropriate," Karen Meleta, a ShopRite spokeswoman, told the Express-Times.

Barry Morrison of the Anti-Defamation League agreed with ShopRite's decision. "Might as well put a sign around their [the children's] neck that says bigot, racist, hatemonger,"Morrison said. "What's the difference?"

The Campbells say they don't understand what the big deal is. "ShopRite can't even make a cake for a 3-year-old," mother Deborah Campbell said."That's sad."

The couple's other two children are named JoyceLynn Aryan Nation Campbell and Honszlynn Hinler Jeannie Campbell.

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Siberian beauty crowned Miss World

Siberian beauty crowned Miss WorldKsenia Sukhinova (AFP Photo / Paballo Thekiso

Ksenia Sukhinova from Siberia has been crowned the new Miss World in a glamorous show in Johannesburg, South Africa. The 21-year-old student from the Tyumen region beat 109 rivals.

First runner-up was Trinidad and Tobago’s Gabrielle Walcott followed by India’s Parvathy Omanakuttan as second runner-up. The other two finalists were from South Africa and Angola.
ПодписьAFP/Getty images photo

More than one billion viewers across the world - a record number - watched the contest's finals on TV.

Born in Nizhnevartovsk, Ksenia moved with her parents to the city of Tyumen, where she won the Miss Tyumen title. Later she was crowned Russia’s beauty queen.

Coming from the region known for its oil industry, Ksenia chose oil and gas studies for her degree.

She’s a big fan of sports, and has been doing calisthenics, swimming and biathlon since childhood.

The young beauty started modelling for designers in her home town in her teens. Soon she hit the international fashion shows in Paris.

Russian models are popular in the international fashion industry. But many experts say that it's quite rare for winners of beauty competitions, even international ones like Miss World or Miss Universe, to become fashion stars.

However, Ksenia Sukhinova is already a successful model and believes her triumph in Miss World will only enhance her chances of becoming a top name in the fashion world.

Tatyana Koltsova, the founder of Red Stars, the first ever soviet model agency, says Ksenia has the skills and the talent to become a global fashion star.

“Usually Miss World's looks are so recognisable that you can't change her image. But a model's face has to serve as a canvas for designers, stylists, photographers and others. And I think Ksenia has the potential to become a real top fashion model”.

The Miss World beauty pageant was created in 1951 in Britain. Its main rivals are Miss Universe and the Miss Earth competitions.

Since its launch the Miss World Organisation has raised nearly 400 million dollars for children’s charities.

Ksenia Sukhinova says raising funds for charity will be one her main tasks next year.

She is the second Russian to win the prestigious Miss World title. In 1992 the contest was one by Yulia Kurochkina from the Moscow region, while Oksana Fyodorova won Miss Universe title in 2002.

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New mother forced to travel 250 miles between four hospitals to give birth... only to see her premature twins split up

By Andrew Levy

Angela Breeds was forced to travel 200 miles between four hospitals

Angela Breeds was forced to travel 250 miles between four hospitals

An expectant mother of twins was ferried 250 miles between four hospitals only to have her babies separated as soon as they were delivered.

Angela Breeds, 30, was told she needed a Caesarean section when doctors found one of her unborn babies was too small and not getting enough nutrition.

But what should have been the most thrilling moment of her life turned into a five-day ordeal because the hospitals either did not have the right scanning equipment or the incubators.

Doctors finally performed the Caesarean and delivered Suzie and Sonny nine weeks early. But then Sonny had to be moved to another hospital five minutes after birth - again because of incubator shortages.

Miss Breeds and her partner, Lee Taylor, 35, are now getting up at 5am every day to take breast milk to the babies at each hospital.

Miss Breeds said: 'I'm just so angry about being pushed around everywhere. Then when I found out they had to be separated I was completely gutted.'

Doctors in Basildon, Essex, became concerned following a routine scan and sent Miss Breeds to King's College Hospital in South-East London for a specialist scan on December 3.

She drove the 31 miles there with Mr Taylor and doctors confirmed one of the babies was significantly underweight and would have to be delivered early by Caesarean.

The couple then drove back to Basildon for the emergency operation that evening, only to learn the hospital had no intensive care cots available.

This meant Miss Breeds, from Stanford le Hope in Essex, had to go 110 miles to Peterborough Hospital in North Cambridgeshire, in an ambulance which was using its sirens and flashing lights, which she found 'incredibly stressful'.

Angela Breeds' premature newborn daughter Suzie. The baby's twin was taken to The Royal London hospital an hour away

Premature newborn Suzie. The baby's twin, Sonny, was taken to The Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, an hour away, as there were not sufficient facilities to care for both

Doctors there wanted to run more tests to check she still needed the Caesarean and only decided to go ahead with the procedure three days later.

But by then their incubators were full and Miss Breeds had to be sent to Whipps Cross Hospital in Leytonstone, East London, 86 miles away. This time, Mr Taylor, a welder, drove her there as she could not face another journey by ambulance.

She gave birth to two-and-a-half pounds Suzie and two-pounds Sonny the following day, December 8, but only one incubator was free so Sonny was taken to the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel.

He has spent the past week there, although doctors believe he is now strong enough to be reunited with his sister at Whipps Cross this week.

Miss Breeds added: 'It takes about an hour to get from our home to Whipps Cross, then another hour to get to Whitechapel. It's very tiring.'

Her mother Barbara, 57, a sales consultant, criticised the shortage of facilities and complained the unborn babies had been put under more stress because her daughter kept having to starve herself in preparation for the Caesarean.

'Something that should have been one of the happiest days in our lives was totally ruined by all the travel and stress involved,' she said.

Basildon Hospital blamed the problems on 'unpredictable' demand for neonatal intensive care.

NHS East of England, the strategic health authority for the region, said it was reviewing neonatal services in an attempt to improve care.

Basildon Hospital maternity unit, which turned away Miss Breeds as they did not have the facilities to perform a Caesarean section

Basildon Hospital maternity unit, which turned away Miss Breeds as it did not have the facilities to perform a Caesarean section

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The 12 Most Horrifically Misleading Euphemisms

By Glenn Thompson

Euphemisms are terms that frame reality in just the right way, protecting everyone involved from the necessary unpleasantness. A good euphemism is the difference between "going to prison" and "getting reformed in a correctional facility."

As you'll see, euphemisms can be invented to hide some pretty horrifying things. So horrifying, in fact, that our Photo Research Department refused to look up relevant pictures and decided instead to load this article up with softer, sweeter images to take your mind off this miserable language of ours.

"Binocular Deprivation"

If You Didn't Know Better...

You'd think it describes that time your mother caught you spying on the girl next door with your left hand on some binoculars and the right ravishing your nether regions. In contrast, monocular deprivation might describe what happens when a monocle-wearing gentlemen is surprised (causing his monocle to pop out and roll out of the parlor and into the saloon).

What it Actually Refers to...

It means sewing an animal's eyes shut for the purpose of research. We're not just talking about rats either, researchers do it to kittens too (see the link up there).

Holy shit! That got horrifying fast. We're not sure we want to continue with this thing...


If You Didn't Know Better...

If you break it down, you get "bio" and "solids." Solids are good, right? Wouldn't want to be floating around the universe on a ball of water. "Bio" is good too, it suggests something wholesome and natural, like "biodegradeable" and "biofuels."

Maybe "biosolids" are the new snack of the future we'll all be eating!"Mom, can I have some change for the biosolids dispenser?"

What it Actually Refers to...

Something that is neither wholesome nor solid: sewage sludge. More commonly known as "shit-festooned muck."

The bigger question here is: Why? We understand why scientists invent a term like "binocular deprivation;" they want to maintain a certain image for a sometimes sensitive public. But who's out there trying to improve the image of shit?

"Extraordinary Rendition"

If You Didn't Know Better...

This makes you picture a guy at a piano, and a crowd full of people in formal wear listening with tears in their eyes. Hey, the guy with the monocle is there!

"An extraordinary rendition, indeed! Good show, old chap!"

What it Actually Refers to...

The US government has kidnapped someone on foreign soil and brought them to the US, presumably for trial. Or possibly torture.

"Kidnapping" just doesn't have the same zing when you're trying to smooth things over with the country whose sovereignty you've ignored like an anti-piracy message.

"Compassion Zone"

If You Didn't Know Better...

Thanksgiving is a day for giving thanks. Why not a compassion zone as a special place for being compassionate? "Hold on, sir. Let me pencil you in for a hug. Say, 3 PM in the compassion zone?"

What it Actually Refers to...

You know how having a "smoking area" outside a building automatically means you can't smoke inside? Well this is sort of like that.

A few years ago, Kansas City designated an area for homeless people and other undesirables as the "compassion zone," with the intention that all of the homeless found elsewhere would be rounded up and moved there. Earlier drafts of the plan suggested the names "stink village," "bum quarantine area," and "Crackton," but these were rejected as "a little on the nose."

Unfortunately for the homeless, this meant the rest of the city was declared a "persecution zone" where we assume bums could be made to fight to the death for the promise of a sandwich and some waterproof bindle cloth.

"End-of-life Decision-making"

If You Didn't Know Better...

This seems pretty straightforward. The term is relatively abstract, sombre and dignified. We're talking about drafting a will and planning an estate right?

What it Actually Refers to...

How, when and where am I going to off myself?

The more common expression would be "contemplating suicide." The distinction being made here is between somebody who wants to end their life because it is too painful or pointless to go on and somebody who want to end their life because...hmmm. Actually the difference in usage appears to hinge on whether or not you are talking about sick old people.


If You Didn't Know Better...

Well... the meaning is built right into the word, right? To get a population out of an area. Probably by offering to buy them nice homes in the next town over!

What it Actually Refers to...

To kill a herd of beasts until every single one of them is completely and irrevocably dead.

You'll hear it in the context of herds or ranches full of animals that may be infected with some disease they'd rather not see spread. "They were asked to depopulate the herd."

So if in some dystopian future where a plague threatens mankind, and you hear them talk about "depopulating" your neighborhood... don't bother waiting for the U-haul.

"Normal Involuntary Attrition"

If You Didn't Know Better...

You'd be confused. Normal involuntary attrition? "I guess if it's normal I don't need to get it checked out by my doctor. I've dodged my end of life decision making yet again."

What it Actually Refers to...

You are being shit-canned.

It says something about us that we have as many terms for firing people as Eskimos have for snow. "Layoff" worked as a euphemism for a while (a term almost as comfortable-sounding as "put to sleep") but we've caught wise to that one. "Downsizing" got a nasty reputation as a douchebag word from the get-go.

To stay ahead of the curve, companies have to make up new ones almost weekly. Actual examples include:


"Negative employee retention"

"Assign candidates to a Mobility Pool"



"Initiated a Career Alternative Enhancement Program"

"Budget Reinforcement"

If You Didn't Know Better...

The budget is falling apart? Public servants are spending too much and we need to crack down and become more responsible? Some kind of behaviorist experiment involving operant conditioning?

What it Actually Refers to...


At some point, the Ministry of Finance in Sweden decided that they were tired of taxing their citizens, who suffer the greatest tax burden in the world. They were much more comfortable with the idea of "recruiting budget reinforcements" from the bank accounts of their citizens. And that, friends, is how you get away with a 52% income tax. That, or by sending a government-sponsored woman to the home of every male each morning to wake him up with a blowjob.

A friend told us they do that in Sweden, we haven't confirmed it yet.

"Public Diplomacy"

If You Didn't Know Better...

The genius of a good euphemism is making the term so dull that you don't even want to find out what it means. "Public diplomacy?" It sounds like a conference table full of old men pouring over some 500-page trade agreement. BO-RING!

What it Actually Refers to...


But propaganda is for Commies and Nazis! Democracies need other words for talking about how they manufacture consent among the masses. Words that are creamier, more vanilla and topped with melted Swiss-chocolate neutrality.

"Non-operative Personnel"

If You Didn't Know Better...

Is this hospital jargon? Personnel that aren't qualified to perform a medical operation? That can't be operated on? A person who isn't "working," like a broken stereo or something?

What it Actually Refers to...

Dead soldiers.

We could spend the rest of the day doing military euphemisms ("collateral damage," "friendly fire"), they seem to have entire buildings full of people who think these up full-time. So, personnel that is not relevant to military operations because they've been killed get a term that sounds like it should apply to a non-working carburetor.


If You Didn't Know Better...

You'd think this was computer and/or appliance related.

What it Actually Refers to...

Gotcha! You've been shit-canned again!

"Transfer Tubes"

If You Didn't Know Better...

You'd think it means those pneumatic tubes for sending office messages that you sometimes see in the movies, like 1984. What a marvelous futuristic world it would be if messages were sent via a series of interconnected tubes!

What it Actually Refers to...

Body bags.

Yes, we slipped another military euphemism in. We told you, they have an endless supply. And after all, what are body bags, if not tubes for transferring non-operative personnel from where they died to where they will be buried?

Of course, the term could just as easily describe a garden hose. Or a straw. Because the term can describe anything, it really describes nothing. You might as well use a word in a foreign language.

That's a sign of a great euphemism, folks!

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