Archive for May 2010
North Korea has once again brought the world to the brink of a possible major war. For some unknown and incomprehensible reason a North Korean submarine torpedoed a South Korean warship while it was in international waters. The South Korean ship blew apart and sunk with the loss of 49 sailors. An unprovoked attack like this in peace time could only come from the dysfunctional and mentally challenged leadership in Pyongyang.
Kim Jung Il (leader of North Korea) is obviously disturbed and mentally challenged. There are reports that the aging bachelor is a womanizer and heavy drinker. He should be eliminated immediately. A preemptive nightime strike from a B-2 Stealth bomber with a 5,000 pound bunker buster bomb should do the trick. But that would not completely solve the problem.
The military apparatus around Kim would still be as belligerent and irrational as ever. These Apparatchiks are so brain washed with anti-American and anti-South hatred that they would still be as dangerous as the Kim led regime.
Therefore I contend that the current great powers — The United States, Russia and China — should reach a final resolution. The complete annihilation of the communist regime in North Korea. The constant crisis this group of evil doers puts the world through may one day lead to a major war that could escalate to an all out nuclear conflagration. So lets nip the problem in the bud. Strategic surgical nuclear strikes on all North Korean military and communist facilities. Lets put this problem to rest once and for all!
In Quebec they have the language police. Self-righteous zealots who are on a mission to stop English advertising in the province. But in Iran there is something far worse. The morality and religious police. These Islamic purists are on the prowl looking for anything that doesn’t meet the harsh dress and behaviour codes of the Islamic Republic. And the punishment is not a fine or limited jail time. It is physical torture and sometimes death!
By Tala Raassi
It all started five days earlier, the day of my 16th birthday. My Sweet Sixteen began as it should have: sweetly. Two of us drove to a good friend’s house for my party. I was wearing what any traditional young Iranian woman would wear: a scarf over my hair, a black coat, and pants underneath my skirt. When I arrived at my friend’s house, I shed my layers, wearing just a black T-shirt and miniskirt. There were about 30 friends at the party, male and female; we listened to music and chatted. It was innocent fun, no alcohol or drugs.
Without warning, not even a knock, the religious police — government-funded groups that enforce Islamic morality — threw open the door and started shouting. It’s illegal in Iran to wear “indecent” clothes like miniskirts, to listen to music if it’s not approved by the government, and to party with the opposite sex — although people hold gatherings like this in the privacy of their homes all the time. (We learned later that a guy who hadn’t been invited to the party had reported us, to get revenge; he thought the party would simply get shut down.) I panicked and ran out the back door with a friend, which is the worst possible thing we could have done. But I was scared; the religious police, with their long, dark beards, are notoriously brutal.
The police drove us to a local jail, then separated the boys and girls, throwing my 15 girlfriends and me into a barren, rat-infested room — no chairs, no beds, just a cold concrete floor. I looked around and saw a pregnant woman and a woman with a baby, along with several other sullen young women. One woman had clearly been plucked straight from her wedding; she sat quietly on the floor in her flowing white dress. I wondered what she had done “wrong.”
We stayed overnight there on the floor, with no food or water. We had no idea what would happen to us, or how long we would have to remain there. My friends and I kept mostly to ourselves, trying not to attract any attention. We could hear rats crawling on the floor and screams from down the hall. If we needed to use the bathroom, we had to ask a guard’s permission. There were squat toilets right out in the hallway, and no sinks. One woman informed us that an inmate had been raped with a Coke bottle by other prisoners. I was terrified that this might be my fate.
On the afternoon of the fifth day, the guards rounded up my friends and me, pushed us into a bus, and drove us to a nearby court. We weren’t allowed to have lawyers or to defend ourselves. The sentence simply came down from the judge: 50 lashes for the boys, 40 lashes for the girls. We were guilty of breaking Islamic rules: wearing indecent clothing, having a party with both genders in attendance, listening to Western music. Some of the parents tried to negotiate on our behalf, even offering to trade their businesses for our sentences, but they were denied.
We were immediately driven to a small concrete jailhouse near the courtroom, where the guards lined us up in the hallway, boys on one side, girls on the other. Our parents were there, too, and they managed to slip some money to the guards to lessen the severity of our lashes. I don’t think the guards upheld their end of the deal, though. I don’t see how the beating could’ve been any worse.
Today, I’m 27 years old, and my designs are in boutiques in Miami, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Dubai. I also sell my clothes directly through my Website, darbedar.net. I make sexy bikinis, tops, and leggings, all by hand. This past year, I had a show at Miami Fashion Week. Now I’m planning to launch a T-shirt line inspired by the revolutionary movement in Iran. The line is called Lipstick Revolution, in honor of women around the world who are fighting for their freedom.
The punishment I suffered in Iran put my life on a different course. To this day, when I hear the adhan, I’m brought right back to the terror I felt in that Iranian jail. But now, with some distance, I can see that the experience made me who I am — and made me appreciate my freedom, instead of taking it for granted. One thing that hasn’t changed is my faith. I’m still very proud to be Muslim and Persian. I’m excited to be pursuing my dream of becoming a fashion designer, and I hope that I can inspire, and maybe even help empower, other young women. For me, each day is now a dream filled with creativity, freedom, and safety. And yes, I still carry my Koran with me wherever I go.
Mt. St. Helens blew up so much ash that there was ash falling in Manitoba for 2 days back in 1980. I was a witness to this and it looked like light sleet. It did however dissipate as soon as it hit the ground.
The 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens, a stratovolcano located in Washington state, in the United States, was a major volcanic eruption. The eruption (which was a VEI 5 event) was the only significant one to occur in the contiguous 48 U.S. states since the 1915 eruption of Lassen Peak in California.
The eruption was preceded by a two-month series of earthquakes and steam-venting episodes, caused by an injection of magma at shallow depth below the volcano that created a huge bulge and a fracture system on Mount St. Helens’ north slope.
USGS scientists convinced the authorities to close Mount St. Helens to the general public and to maintain the closure in spite of pressure to re-open it; their work saved thousands of lives.
An earthquake at 8:32:17 a.m. on Sunday, May 18, 1980, caused the entire weakened north face to slide away, suddenly exposing the partly molten, gas- and steam-rich rock in the volcano to lower pressure. The rock responded by exploding a hot mix of lava and pulverized older rock toward Spirit Lake so fast that it overtook the avalanching north face.
An eruption column rose 80,000 feet (24,400 m) into the atmosphere and deposited ash in 11 U.S. states. At the same time, snow, ice and several entire glaciers on the volcano melted, forming a series of large lahars (volcanic mudslides) that reached as far as the Columbia River, nearly fifty miles (eighty kilometers) to the south. Less severe outbursts continued into the next day only to be followed by other large but not as destructive eruptions later in 1980.
Some people can go up as high as the sky and they don’t think twice about it. On high ladders, cranes, beams on high buildings or climbing up a soaring communications tower these guys never flinch.
Some of the best photos of this behaviour were taken during the construction of the Empire State Building in New York City. Construction of the 102 story building was completed in 14 months. An amazingly fast time for such a giant building.
Excavation of the site began on January 22, 1930, and construction on the building itself started symbolically on March 17—St.Patrick’s Day—per Al Smith’s influence as Empire State, Inc. president. The project involved 3,400 workers, mostly immigrants from Europe, along with hundreds of Mohawk iron workers, many from the Kahnawake reserve near Montreal. According to official accounts, five workers died during the construction. Governor Smith’s grandchildren cut the ribbon on May 1, 1931.
Some photos of the construction workers way way up:
Must be waiting for more girders.
Looks like they ordered out. No pizza back then so this must be cookies.
And today workers still go very high to construct very high structures and for maintenance.
The photo below shows workers doing maintenance on the highest communications tower in the United States. It is a TV tower in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. These guys went up 2,200 feet. That is a 1,000 feet higher than the Empire State Building.
Workers on the new Hoover Dam Bridge Bypass:
The evil vibrations have re-surfaced at the infamous Demon Hotel on Hargrave street in Winnipeg. Strange appiritions were photographed girating on the roof of the edifice. Four orange ones with a dancing black figure in the middle. What these are only Pazuzu knows.
The taker of the photos immediately contacted legendary Winnipeg free lance photographer and paranormal investigator Edgar Rubinstein. After slugging back a mickey of southern comfort Edgar climbed the delapidated fire escape of the Demon Hotel and entered the Hellish sanctuary.
After having to ward off 2 rabid raccoons with elephant spray, Edgar came across 2 apparitions that caused such fear in the very soul of Edgar, that even the southern comfort could not alleviate the panic. Edgar got 2 amazing photos from the top floor of the brick hell-hole and then left.
Afterward Edgar said that he had never come across such horrid evil miscreation in all of his 54 years as a photographer. But this episode will not sway the brave at heart. Renown paranormal investigators Nad Deen and Mel Nick Ryan, backed up by kickboxer Pauly Stutsman are planning another assault on the Demon hotel. The battle between bad and evil is about to begin. Stay tuned.
Since 9/11 the United States has been determined to try to lessen their dependance on foreign (and especially Middle East) oil. Canada has become a major exporter to the U.S. and offshore exploration has exploded. No pun intended.
The main area of offshore exploration and production is the Gulf of Mexico. But with this increased activity come some very substantial risks.
The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion occurred 20 April 2010 when the Deepwater Horizon, a semi-submersible oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico, exploded after a blowout, and sank two days later. The explosion resulted in 11 deaths, 17 injuries and caused an oil spill that is currently discharging approximately 5,000 barrels (210,000 US gal) of crude oil daily. It is the worst drilling accident in the Gulf of Mexico since the blowout and oil spill of the Ixtoc I in 1979. Experts fear that it will result in an environmental disaster as the oil slick being spread from the Deepwater Horizon accident threatens the Louisiana shoreline, Gulf of Mexico fishing industry and habitat of hundreds of bird species.
Offshore oil and gas in the US Gulf of Mexico is a major source of oil and natural gas in the United States. The western and central Gulf of Mexico, which includes offshore Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama, is one of the major petroleum-producing areas of the United States. In 2007, federal leases in the western and central Gulf of Mexico produced 25% of the nation’s oil and 14% of the nation’s natural gas.
Although pipelines can be built under the sea, that process is economically and technically demanding, so the majority of oil at sea is transported by tanker ships.
A Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) unit is a floating vessel used by the offshore industry for the processing and storage of oil and gas.
The FPSO vessel is designed to receive oil or gas produced from nearby platforms or subsea template, process it, and store it until the oil or gas can be offloaded onto a tanker or transported through a pipeline.
FPSO’s can be a conversion of an oil tanker or can be a vessel built specially for the application.
A vessel that is used for oil storage purposes only is designated a Floating Storage Unit (FSU).
FPSOs are preferred in frontier offshore regions as they are easy to install, and do not require a local pipeline infrastructure for exporting the oil and gas.
One of the biggest oil platforms in the Gulf of Mexico is the Perdido Spar. The structure is 882 feet tall. It is operating in 7,816 feet (2,382 m) of water. It is owned by Shell.