Oh, The Irony

rynner2

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#62
Car stunt shocks newlyweds
A newlywed couple had a shock when they got home from honeymoon to find half a car on the roof of their garage.

But when the James's returned from their week-long holiday in Majorca and looked up to discover the car, surrounded by a greenhouse, they decided they had been asking for it.

A friend of Kelvin James, from Bridgwater, Somerset, had finally got revenge for a prank the 35-year-old had carried out on him three months earlier.

Mr James's friend Royston Grimstead had returned from his Caribbean honeymoon in July to see what appeared to be a Nissan Micra, embedded in his new drive.

'Really funny'

Mr James, a builder and part-time firefighter, had asked a garage owner to cut the vehicle in half after obtaining it from a scrap yard.

He had surrounded the base of the car with loose paving slabs to look as though half the car was under his driveway.

But Mr Grimstead secretly kept the Micra, and, with the help of his friend's neighbours, pulled the latest stunt while the James's were on holiday.

Mr James's wife, Safeway worker Sandra, said: "When we got home on Saturday we saw six or seven of Kelvin's friends on the roof.

"We had just bought the greenhouse before going on holiday and we were going to put our garden plants in there when we returned home.

"I swore when I saw the car. I was in shock. But we're not angry. Nothing is damaged and they certainly have shown imagination."

She said: "There were fairy lights on the greenhouse, because our neighbours had allowed them to use their electrics.

"We thought something might happen, but we never expected them to use the car quite like this."

Mrs James, also 35, added: "The car is going to be there until the weekend when we will have to get a digger to get it down.

"All the neighbours knew about it before we got home and thought it was really funny."
(pics on page)
 

rynner2

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#63
The three former search and rescue helicopter pilots went into the sea after the[ir] plane's engine failed
Two flyers in their 80s have described how they and their 79-year-old pilot were saved after their plane crashed into the sea.
Arthur Record and Denis Stanley, both 82, and their pilot Bernard Maslin were rescued by a fishing boat after their single engined Cessna 172 went down three miles off the Isles of Scilly.

The three former search and rescue helicopter pilots went into the sea after the plane's engine failed at about 1130 BST on Saturday.

Mr Record, who served in the Fleet Air Arm during World War II and is currently living in York, said at hospital in Truro, Cornwall: "Thank God I am alive."

And Mr Stanley, from Chedworth, Gloucestershire, said: "It has not put me off flying."

Former Navy helicopter pilot Mr Maslin, from Cirencester, who was the last to be pulled from the water, was said by a hospital spokesman to be still undergoing tests.

Tributes to his flying skill was paid by Mr Record, who said: "Bernard did a superb, classic ditch landing."

The trio were all members of the Fleet Air Arm Squadron who meet once a month and go flying, and were staying at the Land's End hotel.

Mayday call

Their aircraft was one of nine which set off from Land's End for a day out in the Scillies.

Mr Record said they were six or seven miles from the Scillies when their engine cut out at about 2,000 foot and sent a mayday.

"We saw a boat, decided it was our best chance to glide down as near as possible to it.

"I got out of the plane when I was underwater. I took a deep breath and popped up to the surface.

"We all had to be quick, because the front end of the aircraft was sinking very quickly.

"We were all underwater as we got out. As I came up I thought 'thank God I am alive'.

"We all had lifejackets on - I would not be here to tell the tale if I had not."

They praised the crew of the trawler Semper Allegro which picked them out of the sea within 10 minutes.


They were airlifted to hospital by a Sea King helicopter based at RNAS Culdrose to the Royal Cornwall Hospital, Treliske.

All three men suffered mild hypothermia, said a hospital spokesman.

The rescue operation was co-ordinated by coastguards at Falmouth with the help of staff at the Isles of Scilly Airport.

The manager of the Isles of Scilly Airport on St Mary's, Allan Hicks, said: "The pilot reported engine trouble, he thought it was fuel, sent out a mayday and ditched south of the island of St Martin's.

"They were lucky the fishing boat saw them and went straight to them."

He said other aircraft in the group landed safely.

Spencer Robertson, an engineer on the Semper Allegro, said: "The three gentlemen were in the water with lifejackets on and they were coherent. They spoke to us as we got alongside.

"We retrieved all three of them from the water in a maximum of 10 minutes."
 

rynner2

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#64
NEWSPAPERS around the world have been full of the story about the tiger rescued from an apartment in Harlem, treating it as a combination of a "can you believe it?" and a cute pet tale. But it involves a not-so-cute irony. According to the Wildlife Conservation Society, based at the Bronx Zoo and not too many subway stops from that apartment, there are some 10,000 tigers living as pets in the US - compared with somewhere between 5000 and 7000 living in the wild in the whole of Asia.
http://www.newscientist.com/opinion/opfeedback.jsp?id=ns241899
 

rynner2

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#65
Wednesday:

Last week at the doctor's an appointment for a blood test was made for Tuesday (yesterday), but when I got home and went to put it in my diary I found it clashed with a dental appointment, so I had to phone the doc's and change the blood test to Wednesday...

Went into Falmouth for the dental check-up yesterday, only to find I wasn't booked in. (But apparently I did have an appointment 8 days before... Not sure which end the cock-up was made.) The receptionist said she could give me another appointment today, but I have to give the blood sample at the doctor's at that time, so I now have another dental appointment tomorrow....

Life gets complicated.

But even more complicated for people in Baghdad or California, I suppose.
 

rynner2

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#66
Teenage hero wins bravery award
A 19-year-old has become the youngest ever recipient of the George Cross for his courage during a 'friendly fire' attack in the Iraq war.

Trooper Christopher Finney received the second highest honour for gallantry after he rescued one of his troop and tried in vain to reach another when their two vehicles were mistakenly hit by US warplanes around 25 miles (40km) north of Basra.

[etc]
 

TheQuixote

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#67
Top Rap star arrest for failing to pay child support

United States police have issued a warrant for New Orleans rapper Juvenile for allegedly failing to pay child support.

The multiplatinum rap star, whose real name is Terius Gray, did not show up for a court hearing in August to determine how much child support he should pay the mother of his six-month-old daughter, said Lt Nick Neal of the Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department in Georgia. Deputies obtained the warrant this week on charges of abandonment of a dependent child.

"She is not asking for a million dollars. She is asking for help," Neal said. "A man of his stature should be able to pay child support."

Juvenile's lawyer Larry Duttweiler said his client first plans to take a paternity test to confirm if he's the father. "I've heard that he has had some other bogus claims before, so we want to get the test," Duttweiler said.

Juvenile, 28, won a Billboard Award for R & B Album of the Year for his 1998 release "400 Degreez" and an American Music Award nomination for Favourite Rap/Hip-hop Artist in 1999.

Wolverhampton Express & Star, 10th November 2003

I guess I found it 'ironic' that Juvenile by name, Juvenile by nature... I'll get me coat....
 
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#68
If he'd suceeded in putting the man away he wouldn't have been able to come along and rescue him!!

Rescue has bizarre twist


By THOMAS JENKINS Staff Writer


A Big Spring man who was pulled from a burning car late Tuesday night by another motorist may find thanking his rescuer to be a rather strange situation.



Patrick Kesler, 25, of Big Spring was pulled from his car by passing motorist Scott Knight after his vehicle hit the guardrail on North Highway 350 near the city limit. The twist came when Knight realized he and Kesler weren't exactly strangers.



Knight, an investigator with the West Texas Narcotics Task Force, had testified in a case involving the manufacture of methamphetamine in December -- a case in which Kesler was one of the defendants. Kesler was later acquitted on the charges.



Knight said he saw Kesler traveling south on Highway 350 and witnessed the accident. What happened next was nothing short of heroic.



"I was heading north on 350 and saw a vehicle heading south at what seemed to me like a high rate of speed," said Knight. "I saw the vehicle coming around the corner too fast and then saw it hit the guardrail and flip. I'm not sure how many times.



"I saw a white male inside the vehicle. The car was upside down and I saw him moving inside. The car was on fire underneath the undercarriage. The driver's side window wasn't broken and was still rolled up, but I knew I had to get him out.



"I went back to my vehicle and got my baton and shattered the window," he said. "I climbed in and I knew I had to move him out because the car was on fire. His ankle was caught, so I freed it up and moved him out of the car. The sheriff's department was on the scene at that time and assisted me."



While Knight said he was only doing his job, rescue workers on the scene weren't quite as modest.



"There's no doubt in my mind he saved that man's life," said a sheriff's deputy on the scene. "What he did was heroic."



Heroism aside, Knight, who was obviously shaken by the events, said he didn't give much thought to what he did, acting mainly on instinct.



"I really didn't think about it to be honest with you," he laughed. "Of course I was nervous, but I knew I had to get him out. We just worked as fast as we could to get him out of harm's way."



The narcotics investigator hadn't lost his sense of humor either.



"In all the time that I've had that baton, that's the first chance I've had to use it," he laughed.



Kesler was taken to the Scenic Mountain Medical Center Emergency Room in what emergency personnel on the scene described as good condition.
http://www.bigspringherald.com/articles/2004/02/18/news/news01.txt
 
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#69
Beggar 'to sue' well-wisher

February 19, 2004 - 11:20AM



A beggar in China is threatening to sue a well-wisher who threw money, hitting him in the face.

The beggar was sitting near the entrance of Guangzhou airport in Guangdong province when the donor threw coins at him, the Hong Kong edition of the China Daily said.

The angry beggar chased after the man and grappled with him before police separated them. The beggar says he will now sue the man for insulting his dignity, the newspaper said.
http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2004/02/19/1077072752463.html
 
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#70
Virginia Dale arsonist: Guilty

Volunteer firefighter pleads to first-degree arson

By COURTNEY LINGLE
[email protected]


A volunteer firefighter accused of starting the fire that burned the 123-year-old Virginia Dale Community Church to the ground pleaded guilty Friday to one count of first-degree arson.

Austin Gene Mayo, 20, faces four to 12 years in prison and five years mandatory probation when he is sentenced April 2.

Prosecutor Leah Bishop said she intends to seek sentencing in the aggravated range, which could increase Mayo's sentence to as many as 24 years.

The church, a community mainstay, burned Nov. 16. A passing motorist spotted the fire and called it in, but firefighters could not stop the blaze from consuming the building.

Ten days later, Mayo a 1 1/2 year member of the Livermore Volunteer Fire Department was arrested and accused of setting the blaze, along with three others in the area.

The fire shocked and saddened the community, as did the arrest of Mayo, who was a past Livermore Fire Protection District firefighter of the year.

At Friday's disposition hearing in District Court, Mayo pleaded guilty to the first-degree arson charge as part of a plea agreement in which charges for the other fires were dropped.

Mayo originally was charged with four counts of first-degree arson for a series of four fires started in the Livermore area Nov. 10-18. In addition to the blaze that burned the church, Mayo admitted to lighting three other fires that burned 150 tons of hay, a grass pasture and the front doors of the Livermore Community Center.

Mayo likely will be required to pay restitution to the victims in the amount of ,756. The 20-year-old was one of the first emergency responders on scene at the Virginia Dale Community Church fire.

He told the Larimer County Sheriff's Office that he poured gasoline in the vestibule and ignited the fire, according to the arrest affidavit.

Virginia Dale Community Church member Dana Moen-Wright, 47, said she wasn't surprised by the guilty plea, but it helped her to see the case coming to an end.

"I don't understand what would make someone want to do that," Moen-Wright said after Friday's hearing.

She said while reconstruction of the church is nearly completed, to her the damage is irreparable.

"It doesn't have the (same) feel," she said.

Moen-Wright said her parents, grandparents and great-grandparents attended the historic church.

Reconstruction of the church was funded entirely by donations. Nearly ,000 was raised for the reconstruction, according to member Shirley Moen.

The Rev. Richard Groh, who has preached at the church once a month for the past three years, said he believed Mayo pleaded guilty to avoid a trial at which he would almost inevitably lose.

"I think the young man needs to pay his dues to the criminal justice system," Groh said.

The pastor said he did not think most members of the church would feel closure until after the sentencing.

"The scars that have been inflicted because of this will never be totally healed," Groh said, noting an additional impact of the fires has been the transformation of a tiny community church into a "national focal point."

Groh said he has forgiven Mayo in the name of the church, but is scheduled to testify for the prosecution at the April sentencing.

"We have to separate our religious and personal feelings from the legal process."

Mayo's parents, Glen and Helen Mayo, sat motionless throughout the hearing and quickly left after it ended, saying they did not wish to comment on the plea.

Defense attorney Linda Miller said her client felt relieved after entering his plea.

Miller said Mayo had been diagnosed with depression and had gone off his medications when he ignited the fires.

"He was struggling with whether he wanted to continue to live," Miller said.

She said a mental-health evaluation to be reviewed at the sentencing likely will provide insight into why Mayo lit the fires.

The case was "far more complex" than a young man looking for a thrill, Miller said.

"It certainly is a way to say 'I need help'," she said, adding, "It's very clear that he was not thinking clearly."

Originally published Saturday, February 21, 2004
http://www.coloradoan.com/news/stories/20040221/news/453080.html
 

Mighty_Emperor

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#71
Fire-fighters leave base to burn

Flames have ravaged a fire station in Florida after firefighters left a pot on the stove to answer an emergency.

An off-duty police officer spotted smoke billowing from Station 72 in Melbourne and immediately dialled 911.

The station's firefighters then rushed back and "were the first on scene and fought the fire," Battalion Chief Robert Apel said.

The station's kitchen was burned in the fire that started after grease was apparently left to burn on the stove.

[It's] kind of devastating
Battalion Chief Robert Apel
No one was injured in Thursday's incident.

"We're human and this kind of relays that to the public. We're just as human as them and we make our own mistakes," Mr Apel said.

"We're used to telling people, 'Hey, this is what you need to do,' and comforting them. It turned out we had to comfort ourselves," he said.

Mr Apel said he expected the kitchen and living quarters - which were also damaged - to be fully repaired in about a month.

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/americas/3536413.stm

Published: 2004/03/05 12:59:14 GMT

© BBC MMIV
 

Timble2

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#72
Anticensor-ship web censors itself.

:D

At: http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99994952

Anti-censorship web service censors itself


15:24 04 May 04

NewScientist.com news service


A web-proxy service set up by the US government's International Broadcasting Bureau to enable websurfers in Iran to evade censorship is itself massively censoring what they can see.

That is the conclusion of an independent new report released from the OpenNet Initiative, an international collaboration between researchers at the University of Toronto, Harvard University and the University of Cambridge.

Tens of thousands of Iranians log on each day to the US government's IBB Anonymizer service, run by government contractor Anonymizer in San Diego, California. The service was set up in 2003 by the US government to allow people in Iran to surf websites blocked by Iranian authorities.

The sites blocked include those of political dissidents, pro-democracy sites, and western news media such as news.bbc.com. IBB Anonymizer makes these accessible, but the report says it also blocks hundreds of other sites.

"This simply looks at the domain name", says Jonathan Zittrain of Harvard Law School, a coauthor of the report, and filters out any that contain words on a banned list.

One banned word is "ass", which blocks some pornography sites but also blocks the sites "usembassy.state.gov" and "www.grass-roots.org", says the report. Other words include "breast", "bush", "gay", "hot", "my", "old", "pic", "soft", "teen", "trans" and "tv". "They might as well filter every fifth website," says Zittrain.................
 
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#73
Bin Laden's Stature Rises with the World's Tallest Building

By Mamoun Fandy, Pacific News Service
May 11, 2004

Perhaps the Bin Ladens should get out of the skyscraper business.

The Bin Laden Construction group recently won a bid to build the tallest skyscraper in the world in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The announcement made front-page news in most major Arab media outlets, including the Arab News, the Gulf News and the pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat.

According to Asharq al-Awsat, the building will be over 2,300 feet high, with 160 floors in addition to a parking garage and the ground floor. The Bin Laden skyscraper will outstrip by more than 820 feet the current contender, Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and will house a hotel wing, apartments, offices, entertainment centers and restaurants, according to the report.

The project is intended to show the world the extent of the Bin Laden group's financial and engineering abilities: They will handle all aspects of the building, from financing to construction, on their own. Any large company wants to be seen flexing its industrial and commercial muscle. But the powerful images of 9/11 may give the project its own symbolic meaning.

The computer-generated picture of the proposed Bin Laden tower, printed in Asharq al-Awsat, only adds to the disquiet one feels in reading about the immensity of the building. The tall, sleek structure is shown against an evening sky. From two smaller buildings flanking the tower, two white beams shoot to the sky. For me, these are vivid reminders of the beams of light that served as a temporary memorial near Ground Zero, starting on March 11, 2002, the six-month anniversary of the World Trade Center attack. Could one evoke the destruction of the Twin Towers by the "other" bin Laden more directly? Are we to understand this new project in Dubai as a kind of replacement for the buildings Osama bin Laden destroyed?

What other messages could be gleaned from this drawing? Indeed, it suggests that Dubai could surpass New York's centrality as a business hub. The emergence of moguls like the Bin Laden group and the prominence of the Gulf Cooperation Council economies are written into this project. The tower can be read as a story of how and where the Bin Laden construction group will remake the world.

The Bin Laden company has always tried to keep its distance from Osama, the Bin Laden of destruction. The company was founded by Mohammad bin Laden in the Saudi city of Jeddah in the 1950s. Thirteen of Mohammad bin Laden's sons sit on the firm's board. The family disowned Osama after he lost his Saudi citizenship in 1994 for suspected terrorist activities.

Will the buildings serve as a reminder of the role that Dubai banks played in funneling money to Al Qaeda?

Islamic symbolism has always been important to the Bin Laden group. They were involved in many Islamic projects. Many years ago, they were entrusted with the renovation of the holy mosques of Mecca and Medina by the Saudi government. The road that connects the rocky stretch between the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina was also built by the Bin Laden group.

But the plan for a new tower in Dubai and the visual connection it makes in relation to New York's former Twin Towers represents a new turn in the symbolism the company embraces. It blurs the lines between Osama's actions in the name of Islam and the kinds of Islamic projects for which the company has become known.

Surely there are more appropriate ways for the bin Ladens to express their engineering and architectural genius.
http://www.alternet.org/story.html?StoryID=18667
 
A

Anonymous

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#74
Perhaps someone should crash a couple of planes into it....
(sorry if that offended anyone, just my sick sense of humour/karma):)
 
A

Anonymous

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#75
Cosmic joker strikes

OMAHA, Nebraska (AP) -- A television cameraman filming a story about a dangerous intersection was struck and killed by a vehicle, police said.

Jeff Frolio, 45, died Thursday night at Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha.

Frolio was struck about 5 p.m. Thursday while crossing the intersection to get another tape from his vehicle, Douglas County Sheriff Tim Dunning said. He walked into oncoming traffic, Dunning said.

A 20-year veteran with station KETV, Frolio was covering a story for the evening's broadcast about two teens who died at that intersection last month.

The driver who hit Frolio was not drinking alcohol or speeding, deputies said. The speed limit of the highway is 60 mph.

The woman didn't realize she had struck a pedestrian until she looked in her rearview mirror, deputies said.

She has not been ticketed, Dunning said.

The intersection is near a hilltop and is heavily traveled from both east and west, Dunning said.

Several residents have complained the busy intersection is a hazard. But Dunning said he didn't think there was anything wrong with the highway.

"Unfortunately he walked into the path of a vehicle," Dunning said. "It's not a traffic engineering problem."

Frolio was chosen as the Nebraska Television Photographer of the Year twice in his career.
 
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#76
Worker Dressed As Devil Saves Teenager

Teen Falls Out Of Amusement Park Ride

POSTED: 10:48 am EDT June 10, 2004

STOCKHOLM, Sweden -- Ben-Hur Pereira was dressed as a devil but became the guardian angel of a teenager dangling from a four-passenger gondola on a Ferris wheel.

Pereira, who works as a devil in the "Ghost House" at the Groena Lund amusement park in Stockholm, had stepped out of the attraction Wednesday and saw the 16-year-old boy holding tight to the gondola. He had somehow fallen out of the passenger compartment and was hanging 30 feet above the ground.

Pereira, a trained acrobat, scaled the Ferris wheel, reached the teenager and pushed him back inside the gondola car.

"I acted on impulse. I have the technique and had the equipment. To climb is my job and now it just happened this way," said Pereira, wearing a black body suit with flecks of red, a goatee and a silver stud in his lower lip.

"He was a devil of a hero," Robert Mesterton, Groena Lund's chief executive told The Associated Press on Thursday.

Mesterton said park officials weren't sure how the boy managed to slip out of the gondola but when they saw what happened they stopped the ride.

The teenager wasn't injured but was taken to a hospital for a checkup and released.

Mesterton said the park has had the Ferris wheel for 30 years and Wednesday's incident was the first time anyone had been in danger of falling out. He said the incident is being investigated by the park and police.
http://www.local6.com/news/3403439/detail.html
 

rjmrjmrjm

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#77
A friend once called me pretentious for using alternate, rather longer words in my everyday speech.

I then went home and had to look up 'pretentious' in the dictionary.

He he...
 
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#78
Dear Mr President can I have $10? Yours sincerely Fidel

Castro asked US president for

In 1940, 12-year-old Cuban boy Fidel Castro wrote to US President Franklin Roosevelt to request a note.

The hand-written letter, embellished with an elaborate signature, has been unearthed by the US National Archives and Records Administration.

It was one of the thousands of letters sent to the White House by children taking their demands to the very top.

In an impeccable hand, young Fidel signs the letter to President Roosevelt : "Your friend".

Dear Mr President

He asks Roosevelt, President of the US between 1933 and 1945, to fulfil one desire - to send him a green note.

"Never I have not seen a ten dollars bill green American and I would like to have one of them," the future Cuban leader wrote.

He included a return address at the Colegio de Dolores in Santiago, Cuba, where he was studying at the time.

The White House had an office to deal with all the president's correspondence and sure enough Fidel Castro received a reply, but disappointingly, no bill.

About 19 years later, his guerrilla campaign toppled the seven-year military rule of Cuban President Fulgeneio Batista and, at 32, Mr Castro became the country's new leader.

The letter was lost for two or three decades and only found by accident by a researcher.

Forgotten gems

Other letters to go on display at the National Archives and Records Administration include that of a boy called Andy Smith who wrote to Ronald Reagan in 1984 to ask for federal funds to help him clean up his room.

Another is from three girls begging President Eisenhower to spare singer Elvis Presley from conscription and, more importantly, to save his sideburns.

"My girlfriend's [sic] and I are writting [sic] all the way from Montana. We think its [sic] bad enough to send Elvis Presley in the Army, but if you cut his sideburns off we will just die!" they wrote.

Nowadays children can still put pen to paper and write to the US president at his Pennsylvania Avenue address but they are more likely to send an e-mail to [email protected].

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/americas/3808431.stm

Published: 2004/06/15 14:01:56 GMT

© BBC MMIV
 

Anome

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#79
The Castro story could be competition for the baseball one.

(That is: Fidel Castro tried out as pitcher for a baseball team in the US, but was rejected, and so returned to Cuba where he led the revolution.)
 

wembley8

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#80
The Castro story sounds like an obvious bit of propaganda - wonder if they have any evidence?

(Rather convenient for it to be in broken English, too...)
 

TheQuixote

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#81
Lost mail campaign gets lost in post
Sun 27 June, 2004 06:36

LONDON (Reuters) - A postal campaign to highlight the quantity of letters that go missing each year has been given a stamp of authority after none of the letters arrived at their intended destination.

The Sunday Telegraph said letters sent by Postwatch, the postal services monitoring group, to 49 members of parliament urging them to report misdelivered or missing mail disappeared without trace.

Conservative Gillian Shephard, one of the intended recipients of the letters promoting the 'Stamp out Misdelivered Mail' campaign said she had written to the chairman of the Royal Mail to complain but to date had received no reply.

"Perhaps I should have faxed him," she was quoted by the newspaper as saying.

The Royal Mail, accused by Postwatch of losing more than 14 million letters a year despite making substantial profits last year, said it had no record of the missing letters.

"We have conducted a full investigation and have found no evidence of any problems in the relevant postal areas," a spokesman told the newspaper. "As far as we are concerned, the letters are not in our system."
http://www.reuters.co.uk/newsArticle.jhtml?type=oddlyEnoughNews&storyID=5521991&section=news
 

TheQuixote

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#82
Buses dropped in shelter fiasco

For years the elderly residents of Saltash Waterside have been campaigning for a bus shelter to protect them from the elements.
Now, at last, thanks to an initiative by the Cornish town's council, the £2,000 structure has been ordered and paid for.


The only problem is the bus service has been withdrawn.

The shelter is one of nine planned by the town council, but the bus company First says the route is losing money.

The pavement has already been raised to make it easier for people to step from the shelter into the bus.

[...]

BBCi News 27/06/04
 

TheQuixote

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#83
Coals to Newcastle...

Yorkshire firm sends tea to China

A North Yorkshire company has won a contract to export tea - to China.


Taylors of Harrogate - makers of Yorkshire Tea - has this month sent its first shipment to Shanghai, a £30,000 order of flavoured teas.

It included China Rose Petal Tea, grown and blended in China, imported by Taylors and packaged in Harrogate, before being exported back to China.

A Taylors spokeswoman said: "We've cracked one of the most difficult markets - selling tea to China."

[...]

BBCi News 28/06/04
 

IbnRobert

Fresh Blood
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#84
"Black" Neo-Nazi convicted

http://www.newswatch.co.uk/headlines.asp?ref=b19e995652c113c0d2bb

The sad thing is I personally knew this dude. I was a sergeant in the Army Cadets and he was brought along by Social Services to see if we can keep him occupied. He was in my Recruit Training Squad and one of my best cadets. Although a touch aggressive, he never ever gave me the impression that he "admired" Hitler, or nazis, or racism at all. I guess he just lost it.

My heart goes out to the girl's mother and family...
 

Timble2

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#85
Beyond satire.........

Some things you just couldn't make up. How's this for pure undiluted cynicism?

At:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1256877,00.html

Fags and fiction

That a US tobacco giant should be courting the idea of ethical trade beggars belief, writes Alison Benjamin

Thursday July 8, 2004

After fairtrade coffee and chocolate, what about cigarettes? The idea may sound preposterous, but hearing the vice president of Philip Morris International claim this week that the tobacco giant is a good corporate citizen, anything is possible.
Asked how a company manufacturing products that kill can ever be responsible, David Davies responded: "The product can't be the determinant of whether your company is socially responsible. It is whether your behaviour is responsible which is key."

In other words, it's about whether Philip Morris uses fewer pesticides to grow its tobacco, ensures no child labour is employed on tobacco farms and does "everything possible" to keep cigarettes away from children that determines its social responsibility credentials, Davies argued.

"It's about how you grow tobacco, sell it and market it," he said.

It is a bizarre notion that anyone would choose to buy a packet of Marlboro cigarettes according to how well the company treats its tobacco farmers, but according to Davies, the customers it has consulted expect the company to take action in a number of areas: the health effects of its products; the development of less dangerous products and preventing youth smoking.

Customers' expectations drive the company's corporate social responsibility agenda, Davies claimed.

"When we respond to our customers concerns it does generate brand loyalty," he said. "They tell us that reducing the risks of the product and stopping kids smoking are key concerns."


So will we be seeing Philip Morris selling fairtrade cigarettes? Well, according to a spokeswoman for the Fair Trade Federation, the idea of fairtrade tobacco has been mooted, so the idea is not as far-fetched as it seems.

"Much of it is grown in the third world so there is an argument for looking at it," she said. "But at the moment the Fairtrade Labelling Organisation, which sets international fairtrade standards and certifies manufacturers, has no plans to include tobacco. It is looking at cotton right now." Davies admitted at the annual conference in London of Business in the Community - a group that includes most of the FTSE-100 companies - that his company's products "cause diseases".

"That's why people have to be informed of the dangers and we have to focus on reducing the net harm of smoking," he said.

Asked if tobacco companies should pay for the cost to the NHS of tobacco-related illness, he said fiscal measures dedicated to treating disease was the best method.

"We are talking to governments about this," he added.

Justifying the case for Philip Morris's existence, Davies argued that with one billion smokers worldwide, cigarettes would still be produced whether or not the company pulled out.

"If I cease to sell cigarettes tomorrow, someone arguably less responsible than I am will be selling them. I'd rather we were doing it than a company that was shipping them in from China and selling them to children."

He claimed the numbers of smokers had not fallen in the UK, but that they were buying lower priced products and illegally smuggled cigarettes.

Davies had three words of advice for other companies in the firing line on corporate social responsibility - ask, listen and learn. Listening to Davies, a former US lawyer, was certainly an eye-opener.
 

fluffle9

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#86
i don't know what's ironic about ethically produced cigarettes. i mean, tobacco is dangerous, but nobody is forced to buy it. a smoker may chose to harm himself by smoking but decide that he does not wish to harm anybody else in the process. and good for him, i say.

with current obesity rates, chocolate could be considered dangerous - and indeed may be legally marketed towards and sold to children, unlike tobacco - but nobody complains about fair trade chocolate.
 

Anome

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#87
Fairtrade tobacco isn't that bad an idea.

I would object to it if RJR or Phillip Morris had anything to do with it, as they are ethically bankrupt. (Not because of what they sell, but how they sell it.)

Of course there is the question of how much tobacco is produced by exploited third world farmers. (No, really, I have no idea. Does anybody else know?)
 

Leaferne

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#88
Sadly, it's just as likely to be grown in North American by exploited migrant workers (at least in southern Ontario).

I buy mine for half price from a guy who gets them from the reserve. Is that wrong?
 

escargot

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#89
28 injured in fire-walking world record attempt

'An attempt to create a world record for fire-walking in Dunedin yesterday led to 28 people being treated for burns - 11 of them at hospital.

The event was to raise money for an ambulance service, and netted $NZ1,000 ($A913).

However, the ambulance service spent more than that treating injured fire-walkers. Those injured were among 341 people who fulfilled criteria set by the Guinness Book of Records - stepping inside markers on the side of the 3.5-metre-long pit and being aged over 14.

The event was run by the New Zealand International Science Festival as a fund-raiser for defibrillators for the Order of St John.

St John acting district manager Jan Scott said staff had to call for extra saline and special burns dressings - materials which cost more than $NZ1,000 ($A913).

Festival director Emma Ramsay Brown said: "We certainly didn't want to cause any pain for people."

Strict safety regulations were in place. People's feet were checked by ambulance officers and doctors were at the scene, along with firefighters.

Ramsay Brown was confident a record was set, but Guinness publishers have to evaluate the information, which will take about two months.'

Silly sods. :laughing:
 

Electric_Monk

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#90
fluffle said:
with current obesity rates, chocolate could be considered dangerous - and indeed may be legally marketed towards and sold to children, unlike tobacco - but nobody complains about fair trade chocolate.
The Co-op have been marketing fair trade chocolate here haven't they? :) I eat plenty of chocolate and it has no effect on my weight either, although I have been trying to cut down for other reasons (too much seems to pass some sort of pimple threshold for my face, and cause a lot to appear, despite scientist's claims of there being no link). And Cocoa husks are meant to be very good for your teeth, and chocolate is meant to be good for you in the same way the occasional glass of red wine is :)

I had a cup of red wine once. I didn't like it.
 
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