News & Information

News & Information

Jeffrey Epstein's cause of death has been ruled a suicide by hanging; however, there a series of conspiracy theories that suggest he was strangled. There are some distinct physical findings that would differentiate the two. 66 year-old Jeffrey Epstein, who recently pleaded not guilty of sex trafficking charges, was found dead in his jail cell on August 10. He had recently been on suicide watch and reports initially suggested he had hung himself by his bed sheet. However, the results of the financier’s autopsy suggest he sustained trauma consistent with hanging (after preliminary reports suggested strangulation). How do forensic experts tell the difference? Hanging With hanging, one drops from a height and suspends, incurring a fracture of a neck bone which in turn may sever the spinal cord. A severe blood pressure drop can ensue and the victim may die within minutes As seen above, a “hangman’s fracture” is seen with hyperextension injuries where the pars interarticularis on the pedicle of the C2 vertebrae becomes fractured. The distance of the drop is crucial in determining the success of the execution. A drop to long could cause beheading, a drop too short could cause strangulation. If they do strangulate ...they asphyxiate (lose air flow), or lose blood flow from their carotid arteries being compromised. From a capital punishment standpoint, hanging is one of the most common and barbaric ways to execute. Three states still have this form of execution as an option if lethal injection is not available (DE, NH, WA).…
This year the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association) predicts a “near-normal” hurricane season. According to the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration, this season may have 9 to 15 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 4 to 8 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 2 to 4 major hurricanes (category 3, 4 or 5; with winds of 111 mph or higher). June 1st marks the official start of Hurricane season and it runs until November 30th. September is usually the most active month. Hurricanes are categorized by their wind speed as designated as the following using the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale: Category I have sustained winds of 74 to 95 mph Category II have sustained winds of 96 to 110 mph Category III have sustained winds of 111 to 129 mph Category IV have sustained winds of 130 to 156 mph Category V have sustained winds of over 157 mph Category III storms have known to cause “devastating” damage and Categories IV and V have been associated with “catastrophic” damage. In a given year, the Atlantic Ocean averages 12 named storms with 6 becoming “hurricanes” and 3 becoming “major” meaning a Category III or greater. Hurricane Katrina in 2005 was at one point a Category V but when it hit landfall it was a Category 3, tragically killing over 1800 people and causing $108 billion in damage. The deadliest hurricane to ever hit US soil, however, was the Great Galveston Hurricane of 1900…
Henry Ross Perot was an American’s American. He died this week at age 89. His 1992 and 1996 independent runs for President were a pre-curser for Donald Trump’s win in 2016. His legacy, however, is embodied in every American who ever took a risk and either succeeded or failed. Perot was largely successful. He started Electronic Data Systems with $1000 and experience at IBM as a salesman fresh out of the Navy. In 1984, he sold it to General Motors—the least entrepreneurial company in the United States—for $2.5-billion dollars. He got a seat on GM’s board and became its biggest shareholder. That’s when the fireworks started. Perot wanted GM to make better cars. He soon found out that GM Chairman Roger Smith regarded EDS as a shiny new thing. “At EDS when we see a snake we kill it. At GM they appoint a committee to study snakes,” was Perot’s comment. Smith soon had enough and the company coughed up another $750-million to get rid of the Texas provocateur once and for all. What GM didn’t get was a non-compete agreement. Perot soon started Perot Systems which was bought by Dell in 2009. One other thing about Perot was important. Being from Texas, he never lost touch with Middle America. No matter how rich he became, he never stopped being the guy from Texarkana whose Daddy was a cotton trader. He always understood that between the east coast and the west coast was a majority of Americans who worked hard,…
After a 67 year run, Mad magazine will cease publication and join its one time (and only real) rival publication Cracked magazine in going “the way of the dodo.” Cracked closed shop in 2007 and Mad magazine will no longer publish new content as of next month. Of course, “no longer publish NEW content” is far from “closing permanently.” Cracked ceased publication but evolved into a highly successful website: Cracked.com. Mad magazine will cease publishing “original content” and instead will revert to publishing “new” monthly issues that contain recycled material from its previous 67 year run. Of course, the “new” issues will still have original cover artwork and it sounds as if the planned end of the year “holiday” issue will actually have new art and new content. The other kicker is that Mad magazine will no longer be widely available in, say - supermarkets or bookstores. In order to receive a copy you will have to either subscribe or visit a specialty comic book shop (Mad magazine is now owned by DC comics). So, Mad magazine is not exactly ceasing all publication as reported at the beginning of the week. I mean, at least for now. A subscription based model that reprints recycled bits from Mad’s long history, um … miiiiiight work. But, probably not. Which is too bad because, like many, I grew up reading Mad (and Cracked) thinking that Mad host character Alfred E. Neuman and his moniker, “What, me worry” was pretty damn cool. Spy vs.…
Ah, internet. How I love you, and hate you at the same time. You have done so much right and so much wrong. And this Chipotle disaster is another case of wrong. Let’s set the scene: A few months ago at a Chipotle in St. Paul, MN, five young, black men in their early twenties come into the restaurant and order food. The manager, a twenty three year old woman named Dominique Moran, tells the five black men, “...you gotta pay (up front) because you never have any money when you come in here, boys.” Well, the boys were recording the interaction and, in the following two minute video (linked on the front), you see the boys claim they are being profiled and ask white customers “do you have to pay up front before you get your food?” This is a fair question. If Moran is only asking black men to pay up front, but not asking white customers the same thing - she’s probably doing something wrong. Right? Well, the boys left the restaurant and posted their various videos to social medial. At least one video went viral, one shot by Masud Ali, 21 (again, the one linked to the front page). There was an immediate and huge backlash against Moran with many rage comments calling her the “racist white manager,” and at targeting Chipotle itself for being racist and for racial profiling black men. Within 24 hours Chipotle issued an apology, stating: “This is not how we treat…
The largest cave in the world is Hang Son Doong (translated from Vietnamese: Mountain river cave.) Son Doong cave is located in Quang Binh province, Vietnam. Even though the province is off the coast of the East Vietnamese Sea, the Son Doong cave is located almost as far west in the province as one can get, which means it’s much closer to central Vietnam than it is to the actual sea. The cave was first discovered in 1991 when a local explorer named Ho Khanh accidentally stumbled across it but, upon his return home, was no able to pinpoint exactly where the cave entrance had been. It took him almost 20 years to find it again but by then, and just about at the same time - the cave had been discovered by British cavers in 2009. The cave itself, according to experts, is approximately 3.5 million years old - created by “... river water eroding away the limestone underneath the mountain where the limestone was weak - then having the ceiling collapse creating huge skylights. At over 5 km long, with sections reaching up to 200m tall and 150m wide, Hang Son Doong is large enough to house an entire New York City block, complete with 40 story skyscrapers. With a total measured volume of 38.5 million cubic meters, this comfortably surpasses Deer Cave in Malaysia, which was considered to be the previous record holder. Stalagmites up to 80m high have also been surveyed, the tallest ever encountered.” And…
A man in an Easter Bunny costume jumped to the defense of a woman involved in a bar brawl. It’s not clear how the fight began but, Sunday evening (on Easter) outside Orlando’s Underground Public House the unidentified man and woman started hitting each other. To me, they both look clearly drunk and so it was more of a lame drunk slap fest than an actual brawl. Which, is probably why no one was actually hurt. Anyway, the man and woman were fighting and, typical of soulless a-holes everywhere these days - no one bothered to help her or break up the fight - instead everyone just took out their phones and recorded it! That is - until the Easter Bunny stepped in. As you can clearly see in the linked video (on the front page) a man in an Easter Bunny costume hopped in and started throwing punches at the man involved in the brawl. Much to the delight of the crowd, who stood by and recorded the event. The brawl doesn’t last long and within a minute a bike cop on patrol shows up and breaks everything up. No arrests were made and according to a witness or two, the cop shook the Easter Bunny’s hand and thanked him for helping. Everyone went home. Turns out - the man in the costume is Antoine McDonald - wanted felon. McDonald has a record a mile long (as they say) and an outstanding warrant in New Jersey. His rap sheet…
Last year I wrote “Opinion: The Turpin parents are guilty. Lock them up forever.” Well, on Friday - I got my wish. David and Louise Turpin, the parents who abused, starved and held all of their children captive, received a sentence of “25 years to life in prison.” Both of them pleaded guilty to torture, child endangerment, false imprisonment and cruelty to dependent adults. If you do not remember the Turpin parents I’ll offer a quick recap. Last January one of their 17 year old children escaped the torture house the Turpins kept their children shackled up in. When 911 responders arrived they assumed the 17 year old was a child as young as 10 because she was so "emaciated," from starvation. The girl told authorities that her brothers and sisters were inside their house, “chained to the walls and beds.” When authorities entered the house, sure enough - all the children from age 2 to 29 were living in miserable conditions and that yes, some of them were chained to furniture, beds, walls. Most of them were as thin as their 17 year old sister, due to malnutrition, and all of the adult children were as tiny as the younger ones, again due to the forced starvation they were all rail thin and underdeveloped. After an investigation, authorities uncovered that the children lived a life of abuse, neglect and torture. The children were even punished for insane reasons up to and including things like this: one of the children…
On Friday, April 12th, Fisher-Price voluntarily recalled the “Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play Sleeper,” after the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) discovered more than 30 babies have died while in the rocker since 2009 - 10 of them occurring since 2015. The CPSC said anyone who purchased the Rock ‘n Play should immediately cease using it and contact Fisher-Price for a refund. The American Academy of Pediatrics agreed with the findings of the CPSC calling the sleepers “deadly,” and urged Fisher-Price for the recall as well. No one is specifying exactly how the babies died, but some were from "suffocation" and most seem to have occurred after an infant "rolled from their back to their stomach," presumably causing the cradle to tip and the child to fall. A week ago Fisher-Price looked into the infant death report from the CPSC, and issued a warning about the product in question, saying: “Fisher-Price warns consumers to stop using the product when infants can roll over, but the reported deaths show that some consumers are still using the product when infants are capable of rolling and without using the three point harness restraint…” In other words - read instructions and don’t use a product for something it is not designed for - because that might be unsafe. Okay. Fair enough. But, that’s clearly “covering our own ass” speech. It’s not like parents were doing something completely unreasonable with the product. The Rock ‘n Play is a soft cradle that vibrates and it’s sole…
Meanwhile, in the gaming community there has been some controversy about an upcoming game. Well, actually it’s been more like a huge fight. You see, there is a game developer called, “Desk Plant” and they are planning to release a game in April called “Rape Day.” If you think the name of a game Rape Day means that you get to play a game where you … you know, rape women. Well, then you’d be right. That’s right - some douchebag company honestly thought it would be a great idea to market a game where you could rape women. But who would be dumb enough to release such a game (you might ask)? Enter Steam. For those that do not know, Steam is website developed by Valve Corporation. The site is used to distribute games & related media online and provides the user with installation and automatic management of software. Steam has a lot of games. And I mean - a lot. I use it all the time. In fact, 90 million active members use Steam every month, just to give you an idea how big the game site is. Steam is no stranger to controversy. They sell a huge variety of games that cover a huge variety of topics up to and including - controversial topics. There has been game drama. Which led Steam to come up with an official response and, they kind of washed their hands with policing games they sell on their site. They feel that…
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