Friday, August 29, 2014

Geography lesson for Russian soldiers who keep getting lost from Canada NATO - funny!

As the Toronto Globe and Mail reports, the tweet - which notably includes the contested Crimean region as part of "not Russia" - isn't an isolated instance of Canadian criticism of alleged Russian incursions into Ukraine.
A map of "not Russia" tweeted by the Canadian Nato delegation.
"Russia's acts of aggression and intimidation toward Ukraine call for collective action," said Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird on Tuesday. "Canada, together with its like-minded allies, must clearly speak out."

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The science behind star signs - BBC article - science research proves the month you were born may influence your destiny

The hidden truth of star signs



Your birthday can influence your lifespan, mental health and even your eyesight. David Robson explains how.

With my birthday in the first week of October, my horoscope tells me that I should be fair-minded and balanced; courageous but indecisive. It may even describe my physical characteristics. According to one 19th Century astrologer, Raphael, I should be a “rather elegant in person, [with] a round beautiful face, ruddy in youth, but very plain featured and inclined to eruptions, that disfigure the face when old,”. I would be offended – until I realise that Zac Effron and Gwen Stefani supposedly have the same traits.

Needless to say, scientific studies have long debunked such predictions. Although one psychological study in the 1970s found that certain star signs can correlate with certain personality traits, later scientists concluded that this almost certainly reflected the power of expectations. If we grow up hearing that we will be just and fair, stubborn or passionate, then we act the script. Crucially, the scientists found that people who know nothing of their horoscope fail to match its predictions.

The specific forecasts of horoscopes may be wrong, but there is a grain of truth; over the last few years, scientists have begun to notice that the month of your birth really can predict your fate.

(Getty Images)

The most obvious effects concern school grades – children born in at the end of the school year perform slightly worse than those born in the beginning, although the differences tend to peter out over the years. But there are other, more startling patterns that are not so easily explained.

In the late 90s, for instance, Leonid Gavrilov at the University of Chicago found that people born in the autumn tend to live longer. He has since confirmed the discovery with many different studies, looking at centenarians, his latest paper found that autumn babies are about 40% more likely to live to 100 than people born in March.

Gavrilov’s discoveries initially met with resistance and misunderstanding. “People who are not familiar with the most recent scientific studies on this topic remain sceptical, associating the work with astrology,” he says. “But when we submit our findings to peer-reviewed professional journals, they are now very well received by experts.” Sreeram Ramagopalan, at the University of Oxford, agrees that the field is gaining momentum. He points out that some of the earlier studies had only examined a small number of participants – meaning it was hard to be sure that the results weren’t simply a fluke. “Only very recently, in the last four or five years, have large studies addressed those issues comprehensively,” he says. Some of the recent findings come from tens of thousands of participants. Ramagopalan’s own studies, for instance, looked at the health records of nearly 60,000 patients in England, showing that winter and spring babies are typically more at risk of schizophrenia, depression and bipolar disorder.

(Getty Images)

Others traits influenced by your birth season appear to be your eyesight (winter babies are the least likely to be highly short-sighted) and your risk of allergies (people born in the summer are less susceptible).

Admittedly, the mechanisms behind these trends are a little murky. Changes in diet and yearly waves of infection could, feasibly, influence the growth of developing baby, with a lingering effect on its health for decades afterwards – even your talent at baseball could be affected (professional baseball players are more likely to have been born in autumn than in spring, possibly because they were healthier at the very start of their lives). You may also be exposed to different kinds of allergens during different seasons. Alternatively, it could be as simple as the length of the day. When it comes to eyesight, for instance, studies have shown that periods of darkness help to regulate the growth of the eyeball. So the long summer days might lead a baby’s eyes to grow out of shape, leading them to lose their focus, while winter babies are less likely to need glasses as they grow up.  

(Getty Images)

Then there’s Vitamin D, which is produced when our skin is exposed to the sun. While a deficiency in the vitamin has long been known to weaken bones and cause rickets, it is now known to be crucial for the development of the immune system – which might also influence your risk of allergies – and the nervous system. “In animal studies, if you restrict Vitamin D during pregnancy, the offspring have severe neurological abnormalities,” says Ramagopalan.

For this reason, lower levels of Vitamin D could feasibly lead to differences in the developing brain’s wiring, which might explain the higher rates of mental illnesses like schizophrenia or depression among people born in the winter. The idea is still very much a hypothesis, although some fortuitous evidence comes from Denmark. Soon after they are born, every Danish baby is pricked on their heel, and a small spot of dried blood is kept as a record of their health at the moment they enter the world. Analysing this data for people born in the early 80s and early 90s, researchers found that those with the lowest levels of Vitamin D at birth were more likely to develop schizophrenia later in life.

Prospective parents may worry that they should try to plan their conception according to these dates – but it’s important to remember that the effects tend to be relatively small. Even so, Ramagopalan says that eventually, we may be able to find simple interventions that smooth out those seasonal differences – by topping up Vitamin D in winter babies, for instance.

(Getty Images)

At the very least, the findings give us a better insight into the rich tapestry of influences guiding our destiny. Clearly our genes and our upbringing are the overriding factors, but if something as random as our birth month can shape our mental health and lifespan, what other factors could be determining our fortune? Our fates may not be written in the stars, but we are only just beginning to understand the many other invisible forces that direct the path of our lives from the very day we are conceived.

Monday, August 11, 2014

US actor Robin Williams found dead at home - article, pics

US actor Robin Williams found dead at home

Robin Williams

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US actor Robin Williams has been found dead, aged 63, in an apparent suicide, California police say.
Marin County Police said he was pronounced dead at his home shortly after officials responded to an emergency call around noon local time.
Williams was famous for films such as Good Morning Vietnam and Dead Poets Society and won an Oscar for his role in Good Will Hunting.
His publicist said he had been "battling severe depression".
In the past he had talked, and even joked, about his struggles with alcohol and drugs.
Williams had recently returned to a rehabilitation centre to "fine-tune" his sobriety, the Los Angeles Times reported in July.
"At this time, the Sheriff's Office Coroner Division suspects the death to be a suicide due to asphyxia, but a comprehensive investigation must be completed before a final determination is made," police said in a statement.
In a statement, Williams' wife, Susan Schneider, said she was "utterly heartbroken".
"On behalf of Robin's family, we are asking for privacy during our time of profound grief. As he is remembered, it is our hope the focus will not be on Robin's death, but on the countless moments of joy and laughter he gave to millions."
Williams had three children from previous marriages.
Williams with his Oscar, flanked by co-stars Matt Damon and Ben AffleckWilliams with his Oscar, flanked by co-stars Matt Damon and Ben Affleck
Born in Chicago, Illinois in 1951, Williams joined the drama club in high school and was accepted into Juilliard School in New York, the prestigious American academy for the arts.
There, he was encouraged by a teacher to pursue comedy.
The actor was first known for his zany portrayal of an alien in the 1970s TV show Mork and Mindy.
He was a regular stand-up comedian while continuing to act in such films as Good Morning Vietnam, Dead Poets Society, Mrs Doubtfire and as the voice of the genie in Aladdin.
While many of his roles were in comedies, Williams won the Oscar in 1998 for best supporting actor as a therapist in Good Will Hunting.
Fellow comedian Steve Martin tweeted he "could not be more stunned by the loss of Robin Williams, mensch, great talent, acting partner, genuine soul."
Martin and Williams appeared on stage together during an 1988 Broadway revival of Waiting for Godot.
Comedian and talk show host Ellen de Generes tweeted: "I can't believe the news about Robin Williams. He gave so much to so many people. I'm heartbroken.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

War and Peace - we spend $2.5 trillion per year on war - 9 Things We Can Accomplish If We Re-Directed our Resources from War - article, pics

9 Things We Can Accomplish If We Re-Directed our Resources from War
“It is now highly feasible to take care of everybody on Earth at a higher standard of living than any have ever known. It no longer has to be you or me. Selfishness is unnecessary. War is obsolete. It is a mater of converting the high technology from weaponry to livingry.”   – R. Buckminster Fuller
The worldwide military expenditures for 2011 summed up to as much as $2,157,172,000,000 (yes, that’s over $2,15 trillion). The human mind cannot really grasp such a large amount of money, that’s why I will try to put it into perspective later on. The USA alone spent a record sum of $741,2 billion in 2011 for waging wars and producing new weapons, while in 2010, the US military expenditures reached $683.7 billion.
The US defense budget for 2012 will exceed $1 trillion and is expected to reach as high as $1,415 trillion!
In January 2012, President Obama promised that USA’s defense budget will grow slowly but steadily in the following 10 years.
Now, the question we need to ask ourselves is: “what kind of future awaits mankind”? If our worldwide governments constantly raise the war budgets, design new weapons and pick new fights, then the future can only bring: more wars, destruction, sufferance and famine.
If there is no such thing as a “global financial conspiracy”, then why are we not allocating larger budgets for clean & renewable energy, new transportation methods, Eco-friendly materials to substitute for plastics and other non-biodegradable materials? Why are we not allocating larger budgets for natural healthcare and natural foods and drinks?
Well, because there IS a global financial conspiracy and the global banking elite has big money invested in the war apparatus – and war, my friends, is the most profitable business on Earth.
Sadly, we do have our part of guilt as well, because we allow the global governments to use our money for such primitive purposes: murder and destruction. There is still time to put an end to this madness and start creating a positive future for the human species. Sooner rather than later, we must get rid of these “royal” blood-sucking parasites and start governing ourselves.
Here are 9 Things That Could Positively Affect the World if we Re-Directed our Resources from the War Machine:


Transportation should be clean, green, fast, comfortable and affordable for all; It must also be financially sustainable on a global level. ET3 is literally “Space Travel on Earth”. ET3 is silent, low cost, safe, faster than jets, and is electric:
ET3 can provide 50 times more transportation per kWh than electric cars or trains.
Speed in initial ET3 systems is 600km/h (370 mph) for in state trips, and will be developed to 6,500 km/h (4,000 mph) for international travel that will allow passenger or cargo to travel from New York to Beijing in 2 hours. ET3 is networked like freeways, except the capsules are automatically routed from origin to destination.
ET3 capsules weigh only 183 kg (400 lbs), yet like an automobile, can carry up to six people or 367 kg (800 lbs) of cargo. Compared to high speed rail, ET3 needs only 1/20th the material to build because the vehicles are so light. With automated passive switching, a pair of ET3 tubes can exceed the capacity of a 32 lane freeway. ET3 can be built for 1/10th the cost of High Speed Rail, or 1/4th the cost of a freeway.
Rail VS. ETT — The Costs:


If your company would go bankrupt because it cannot survive in the current economic scheme, do you think the government would bail you out? Of course not. But the US government bailed out 3 gas-car manufacturers: GM, Ford and Chrysler. They’ve officially received $25 billion ($700 billion unofficially, as documents show) from OUR tax money because we don’t want to buy their cars anymore! How corrupt and absurd is that?
If there is no global financial conspiracy, then why are they bailing out environmentally-polluting obsolete companies, instead of investing the money in Eco-friendly companies, like Tesla Motors for exampleElon Musk is the founder and CEO of Tesla Motors. He is a 40 years old South African engineer and entrepreneur, and his financial worth is a little more than half a billion dollars. The company’s worth is of only ~ $250 million. That’s such a tiny amount compared to $700 billion, don’t you think? Yet, he was able to achieve so much, with so little.
Tesla Motors is named after electrical engineer and physicist Nikola Tesla (mankind’s greatest inventor). The Tesla vehicles use an AC electric motor descended directly from Tesla’s original 1882 design.
Tesla Model S (starting price $49,000 — deliveries just recently started);
Features: 0-60 mph in 5.6 to 6.5 seconds, depending on the model. Comes with three battery types, 40, 60 and 80 kWh, and an estimated range of 160, 230 and 300 miles/charge.
If you want to see how much a full “tank” costs, choose a battery type and multiply it with the kWh’s price of your area.
Fully electric, 7 seats, 2 trunks, 17″ central touch screen display, 0 tailpipe emissions, no engine noise, full instant torque. The car accelerates from 0-60 mph in 6.5 sec, 5.9 sec, 5.6 sec, or 4.4 sec. for the top model. That’s faster than many of the sport cars.
Tesla Model X (starting price of about $60,000 — deliveries will begin early 2014) – the company’s first SUV;
Features: 0-60 mph in less than 5 seconds (faster than a Porsche 911). The most sophisticated 4×4 traction control system in the world, two electric motors, + 50% torque improvements.
You will be able to choose from two battery types, 60 and 85 kWh. Fully electric, 7 seats, 2 trunks, 17″ central touch screen display, 0 tailpipe emissions, no engine noise, full instant torque.
My question is, why are we not giving the $25/$700 billion to Tesla Motors (or split it between all Electric Vehicle companies) for researching even more advanced clean technology, instead of bailing out environmentally-damaging and financially unsustainable companies? Because the global elite has big money invested in oil and oil-consuming car companies.


The global over-population is a lie. The current population of our planet can live and thrive on a continent no larger than Australia, with Eco-farms included. Still, for those who argue the lack of space in the future, the solution is already here: the vertical farm.
the vertical
Because the vegetables grow in a controlled environment, there is no need to use chemicals.


How to produce 1 Million pounds of organic food on 3 acres, in the heart of a crowded city.
Growing Power is a sustainable urban agriculture center located in the city of Milwaukee. It was founded by Will Allen to introduce healthier food options to the urban community, while simultaneously demonstrating a sustainable model for local food production. Using the vertical space intelligently, an old warehouse can be turned into a very profitable 3 acres green house — right in the heart of the city.
“To grow sustainably means that we do not use any synthetic chemicals – fertilizers, pesticides, or herbicides – on any of our crops.”


is a futuristic concept of sustainable organic agriculture, for your local grocery store. Ben Greene, its inventor, perfected the process of food growth and distribution, with a simple and clever idea: grow and sell in the same place. The food “has to be harvested, packed, transported and cooled. And at every step, there is massive inventory loss.” And this is what made Greene think outside the box: “What if this entire system could be consolidated into one site?”


Allow me to say it loud and clear: WE HAVE IT! Free energy has been possible for more than a hundred years, but it has been suppressed for financial reasons. Free energy cannot be controlled or taxed. Nikola Tesla was able to transmit unlimited quantities of electricity via wireless. All the important figures of his time visited Nikola’s laboratory and witnessed his futuristic experiments (“The glitterati of New York’s finest would flock to his laboratory to witness the spectacular high voltage demonstrations. Notables such as Mark Twain, John Muir, Sarah Bernhardt, Sanford White, and Teddy Roosevelt, and many others attended.” – excerpt from the above documentary).
His dream was for the entire planet to have access to free and unlimited energy, and all our devices and machines to capture it wirelessly. He even designed cars and planes able to tap into this energy source and we would have never payed a cent for it.
Our governments are trying to make us believe that free energy is a myth. But there are so many people who proved otherwise.
Here is a great documentary for you to watch and make up your own mind. ^
If they are interested in our well-being, then why doesn’t the government invest in “free energy” research programs? Actually, why aren’t they investing in the already available CLEAN energy sources (solar, wind, electric vehicles and recharge stations all over the world, etc.)?
The Keshe Foundation is struggling to gather funds for their free energy projects, but no government is interested in investing in their – allegedly – already proven technology:


The United States have an estimated of 3.5 million homeless people. Building minimum-comfort apartment blocks for those who lost their homes should cost no more than $50 billion. It’s a one-time payment and the project would also include newly-created jobs inside the district. It’s a win-win situation, for the government will not have to take care of the homeless people anymore.
Homeless Link represents and supports 500 organizations working with homeless people in the UK. They argue that “most studies indicate that homelessness is more expensive to society than the costs of solving the problem.”
Many of the homeless people ended up in this situation because of the corrupt banking system, which operates like a legal loan-shark. When the banking elite collapsed the economy, instead of helping the people, our government used … *hold tight*… over $7 trillion from OUR money to bail out those who created the problems in the first place. That’s a gift of about $23,000 from each American (including children) to the bankers! It’s pure madness!
According to Amnesty International USA, there are more than six times as many vacant homes in the U.S. than there are homeless people.
“In the last few days, the U.S. government census figures have revealed that 1 in 2 Americans have fallen into poverty or are struggling to live on low incomes. And we know that the financial hardships faced by our neighbors, colleagues, and others in our communities will be all the more acutely felt over the holiday season.
Along with poverty and low incomes, the foreclosure rate has created its own crisis situation as the number of families removed from their homes has skyrocketed.
Since 2007, banks have foreclosed around eight million homes. It is estimated that another eight to ten million homes will be foreclosed before the financial crisis is over. This approach to resolving one part of the financial crisis means many, many families are living without adequate and secure housing. In addition, approximately 3.5 million people in the U.S. are homeless, many of them veterans. It is worth noting that, at the same time, there are 18.5 million vacant homes in the country.”


Though it sounds like an impossible mission, according to the World Food Summit held every several years by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), we only need $30 billion/year to eradicate hunger on planet Earth! I want to remind you that our leaders spent $2,15 TRILLION on wars in 2011, and USA’s war budget could reach the unprecedented $1,415 trillion in 2012. It is more than obvious that we do have the money!
According to a study conducted in 2007 by Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph E. Stiglitz and Harvard public finance lecturer Linda J. Bilmes, the Iraqi war was “costing $720 million a day or $500,000 a minute.” This means that 42 days after calling the troops back home, the USA alone would have the budget to solve the planet’s hunger problem for an entire year.
FAO’s Director-General, Dr Jacques Diouf, noted that “in 2006 the world spent $1,200 billion on new weapons, while the food wasted in a single country could cost $100 billion and, excess consumption by the world’s obese amounted to $20 billion.
‘Against that backdrop, how can we explain to people of good sense and good faith that it was not possible to find $30 billion a year to enable 862 million hungry people to enjoy the most fundamental of human rights: the right to food and thus the right to life?’ Dr Diouf asked.”


Nuclear power is extremely expensive and extremely dangerous (Must-Read: The Dangers and Costs of Nuclear Energy). By contrast, solar power is cheap on the long run and poses little risk to the environment or to our health.
As a result of the Fukushima nuclear disaster of March 11, 2011, Germany decided to decommission all of its nuclear power plants by 2020, and replace them with solar panels.
On June 2nd, 2012, Germany produced a world record 22 gigawatts of clean energy, more than all other countries combined, and the equivalent of 20 nuclear power plants working at full capacity. This proves that it can be done!
About the Author
Alexander Light is the editor of Please take a moment to visit his excellent site.

The 20 Most Magical ‘Tree Tunnels’ You Will Ever See. I Wish I Was Walking There Now - 20 of the most amazing pics you've ever seen...

The 20 Most Magical ‘Tree Tunnels’ You Will Ever See. I Wish I Was Walking There Now.

#1. The Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland
01 - The Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland

02 - E0wFOBA

#2. Street in Bonn, Germany
03 - Street in Bonn Germany

#3. Wisteria Flower Tunnel in Japan
04 - Wisteria Flower Tunnel in Japan

05 - ci6Y5nD

#4. Oak Alley along the Mississippi River outside New Orleans, Louisiana
06 - Oak Alley along the Mississippi River outside New Orleans Louisiana

#5. Jacarandas Walk in South Africa
07 - Jacarandas Walk in South Africa

#6. Tunnel of Love in Ukraine
08 - Tunnel of Love in Ukraine

09 - ZElIpoz

#7. Street in Jerez, Spain
10 - Street in Jerez Spain

#8. Ginkgo Tree Tunnel in Japan
11 - Ginkgo Tree Tunnel in Japan

#9. Blossom Path, Location Unknown
12 - Blossom Path Location Unknown

#10. Bamboo Path in Kyoto, Japan
13 - Bamboo Path in Kyoto Japan

#11. Maple Tunnel in St Louis Oregon, USA
14 - Maple Tunnel in St Louis Oregon USA

#12. Street in Porto Alegre, Brazil
15 - Street in Porto Alegre Brazil

16 - 5WsNjTf

#13. Sakura Tunnel, Japan
17 - Sakura Tunnel Japan

#14. Tree Tunnel in Netherlands
18 - Tree Tunnel in Netherlands

#15. Location Unknown
19 - Location Unknown

#16. Laburnum Tunnel in Bodnant Gardens, UK
20 - Laburnum Tunnel in Bodnant Gardens UK

#17. Parque Francisco Alvarado in Costa Rica
21 - Parque Francisco Alvarado in Costa Rica

#18. The Path Up To the Halnaker Windmill in Sussex, UK
22 - The Path Up To the Halnaker Windmill in Sussex

#19. Cypress Tree Tunnel At The Historic Marconi Wireless Station, California
23 - Cypress Tree Tunnel At The Historic Marconi Wireless Station California

#20. Gyeonghwa Station in Jinhae, South Korea
24 - Gyeonghwa Station in Jinhae South Korea