Hey big spender, you surrender! Rep. Aaron Schock announced he will resign from Congress amid accusations that the Illinois Republican went overboard spending taxpayers’ money on everything from luxury travel to Katy Perry tickets to tens of thousands of dollars in mileage reimbursements.
In a statement issued Tuesday Schock said that “constant questions over the last six weeks have proven a great distraction” and have made it “too difficult for me to serve the people of the 18th District. Some were shocked over Schock’s resignation, but others were not. If you spent thousands of taxpayers’ dollars redecorating your congressional office to resemble the set of Downton Abbey, eventually you’re going to get some questions – both about your spending habits and your sexual orientation.
Where in the world is Vladimir Putin? Oh, there he is. It had been almost two weeks since the Russian President was last seen in public, sparking rumors that he might have fallen ill, been removed in a coup, or simply died. But on Monday, after cancelling a number of scheduled events, the Kremlin leader stepped back into the spotlight, attending a meeting with Kyrgyzstan President Almazbek Atambayev in St. Petersburg. Asked by reporters about the speculation on his health, the reasonably healthy looking Russian leader replied: “It would be boring without gossip.” BBC News
Oops, we lost $500 million worth of weapons in Yemen! The Pentagon is unable to account for more than $500 million in U.S. military aid given to Yemen. Wait, why is Yemen getting $500 million in weapons? Well, US foreign policy dictates that one should flood the area with weapons and let Yemen deal with any emerging civil conflicts – which is great until the rebels take over. Yemen has been in a state of chaos since Shiite Houthi rebels, who receive support from Iran, overthrew the government in January and began taking over many Yemeni military bases. So now there are fears that the untracked supplies, which range from M-16s to Humvees, are at risk of being seized by Iranian-backed rebels or al-Qaeda. Having weapons fall into the wrong hands? Well, that’s another staple of US foreign policy. Washington Post
Who knew frats were douchbag central? (I mean, besides everyone). A fraternity at Penn State University has been suspended after police discovered a private Facebook page where members posted images of partially naked women while they were passed out or sleeping. A former member of the Kappa Delta Rho fraternity contacted the police and told them about the page, which also included posts related to hazing and drug deals. There are two clear takeaways from this story: frats sound truly terrible and there’s no such thing as a private Facebook page. CBS News
The self-proclaimed “Michelangelo of Butt Injections” has been convicted of murder. Padge-Victoria Windslowe, a former madam who performed thousands of buttocks injections without a license, was found guilty of murdering a dancer whose heart stopped after nearly half a gallon of silicone was injected into her buttocks. The evidence revealed that Windslowe traveled to hotel rooms for “pumping parties” equipped with her medical equipment: a water bottle filled with liquid silicone, a red plastic cup, needles and syringes, and Krazy Glue to close the wound. Not only did Windslowe not have any medical training (hence the Krazy Glue), her methods came from tips from overseas doctors who did her sex change operation as well as a client of her escort service who was a physician. That physician’s name? Dr. Nick Riveria, graduate of the Hollywood Upstairs Medical College. Don’t worry. You won’t feel a thing… [exhibiting a swirling mechanical device] …till I jam this in your butt! Huffington Post
12 people have been killed in a shooting incident at the Paris office of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, best known for its controversial cartoons.
Four of France’s best-known satirical cartoonists, including the magazine’s editor, were among the dead. A major manhunt has now been launched in Paris for three gunmen seen armed with AK-47s and pump-action shotguns. According to eye-witnesses the gunmen were yelling “Allahu Akbar”and “the Prophet is avenged.” Apparently the gunmen took issue with the magazine’s controversial series of cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed. A killing rampage over some cartoons? Seems like an appropriate reaction… if you’re insane. President Francois Hollande called it a “cowardly murder” and declared a day of national mourning on Thursday. “Nothing can divide us, nothing can separate us,” Hollande said in a brief but defiant address. “We will win. Nothing will make us renounce our determination. Long live the republic. Long live France.” BBC News
A top figure in Islamic State’s self-declared police force, known for their numerous beheadings, was found beheaded in eastern Syria with a cigarette placed in his mouth and a message written on his body. The Egyptian national’s body was found with signs of torture along with the message “This is evil, you Sheikh”. Residents in areas controlled by Islamic State have said the group has banned smoking in public. “We do not know whether Islamic State killed him or whether it was local people or other fighters,” said Rami Abdulrahman, who runs the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Either way, someone was clearly displeased with the smoking ban. Lesson learned: you can behead and stone as many people to death as you want, just don’t come between a man and his cigarette. Globe and Mail
Michael Dunn, the Florida man who shot and killed 17-year-old Jordan Davis in a dispute over loud music, has received a life sentence (plus 105 years) without possibility of parole. Hopefully there’s no loud music in prison…
Michael Dunn shot and killed Davis outside of a Jacksonville, Florida convenience store in what he claimed was self-defense but everyone else claimed was just plain crazy. According to Dunn’s version, Davis and his buds were listening to some super loud rap music in their SUV. When he asked them to turn it down, he claims that one of them pulled a shotgun on him. Instead of overreacting, Dunn got his loaded gun from his car and shot 10 rounds into the SUV. The only catch? Davis and his friends were unarmed. At his sentencing Dunn publicly apologized for the first time, saying, “If I could roll back time and do things differently, I would. I was in fear for my life and I did what I thought I had to do. Still, I am mortified I took a life, whether it was justified or not.” Spoiler alert: it wasn’t justified.
Ebolamania is sweeping the nation! After a vomiting passenger died (from non-Ebola realted causes) on a Nigeria-to-JFK flight, tension in the sky is high. On Thursday, a middle-aged African-American woman was locked in the lavatory of an American Airlines flight from Dallas to Chicago after she began vomiting. According to another passenger on the flight, after the woman vomited in the aisle, the crew feared the spread of Ebola and forced her to reveal all her recent travel and remain in the bathroom for the last 45 minutes of the trip. But was it really fear of Ebola that prompted this overreaction… or was it fear of black people? The witness, a University of Texas professor, thinks the latter, chalking the incident up to racial profiling. “If I had puked on the plane, would they have they done that to me? I’m a 60-year-old white woman with gray hair. No, they would not have,” she said. Actually, they probably would have. Ebola seems to bring out the hysteria in people. I’m surprised they didn’t push this woman out the door at 35,000ft. Houston Chronicle
told RTL radio, such as “telephone cases or T-shirts that show amusing scenes based on drunkenness.” While France is among the world’s most liberal countries in terms of alcohol consumption, some feel the Irish-style binge-drinking has gotten out of control. “We see more and more seriously drunk young people in the emergency room, who will stay for 24 hours, sometimes two days, to sober up,” a French doctor TV channel France24 last year. The proposed law presented to the Assemblée Nationale early next year, but hopefully legislators will be too drunk to pass it.
Where in the world is Kim Jong Un? The mystery surrounding the whereabouts of Kim Jong Un, who has not been seen in public since early September, grew even more mysterious Friday after the Supreme leader missed a ceremony to pay tribute to his late father and grandfather on what is a VERY important national anniversary.
Kim Jong Un’s absence and rumored illness has recently fueled speculation that he’d been overthrown in a coup, but the prevailing theory is that the dictator hurt his leg and doesn’t want to appear weak in front the people who worship him. Sources say the injury, possibly related to
or prevent an , how can they sort through zillions of social-media postings to determine who is a harmless internet troll and who is a not-so-harmless internet troll with a detailed plan?
in western Iraq. The ISIS invasion has gotten so bad that local residents are fighting back – with tea. Four ISIS militants at a check point in Jalawla, 70 km north east of Baqubah were poisoned by a local resident after he offered them some tea that he had poisoned earlier. Looks like the tea had a higher success rate than the 46 U.S. cruise missiles. AP
. Unless, of course, they’re a fetus. Todd Kincannon, the former executive director of the South Carolina GOP, took to Twitter to express his views that “people with Ebola in the US need to be humanely put down immediately” and “the protocol for a positive Ebola test should be immediate execution and sanitation of the whole area.” He also blames the spread of Ebola on the people of Africa for: “Eating each other.”
war major counter-terrorism operation against ISIS has begun in Syria.
On Monday night, the United States—along with their new buddies Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates, launched cruise missiles and precision-guided bombs at ISIS strongholds along Syria’s border with Iraq. The U.S.-led strikes hit the city of Raqqa (ISIS’s self-declared capital of Syria) as well as a number of other villages and cities. In addition to targeting ISIS, the Monday night air strikes took aim at the Khorosan Group, an Al Qaeda cell filled with well-seasoned operatives. Why not kill two birds with one missile? So far the strikes have been a success – if you measure success by dead bodies. At least 70 ISIS militants and 50 other al-Qaeda-linked fighters have been killed in the attacks. BBC News
Louisianan gays rejoice, Chadian gays recoil! A judge in Louisiana has ruled that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. State Judge Edward Rubin said the ban violates the due process clause and the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment, as well as the full faith and credit clause of the constitution. In other words, it’s good news for the couple in the case, Angela Costanza and her partner Chasity Brewer, who argued that Louisiana should recognize their marriage, which took place in California. Meanwhile, over in Africa, Chad is poised to become the 37th African country体彩手机在线怎么下载 to ban homosexuality. As part of a larger overhaul of the penal code, Chad is expected to pass a new law banning homosexuality with a punishment of up to 20 years in prison. The government ministers, who have already signed on to the bill, say claim the law works to “protect the family and to comply with Chadian society.” On a more positive note, the new penal code also abolishes the death penalty, so at least the newly criminalized homosexuals won’t end up on death row… small win? The Guardian
Turns out Somali pirates are more forgiving than ISIS militants… or they’re just more into ransoms. A German-American journalist who was abducted more than two years ago has been freed. Michael Scott Moore was abducted in the Somali city of Galkayo back in January 2012 while researching a book about piracy. A Somali pirate commander told The Associated Press that the journalist had been released after a ransom was paid, but according to Abdi Yusuf, interior minister of the semi-autonomous region of Galmudug in central Somalia where the 45-year-old journalist was abducted, no ransom was paid. Ransom or no ransom (there was totally a ransom), Moore is no doubt happy to be reunited with his family and pirate-free. New York Times
Instead of popping some pills or fastening a noose the good old fashioned way, a Thai woman has come up with a new method of suicide: jumping into a crocodile pit.
A 65-year-old woman from Bangkok killed herself by jumping into a crocodile pit at a reptile farm near the capital. Wanpen Inyai, who appeared depressed prior to the incident, took off her shoes and jumped right into the 3m deep pond that contained hundreds of adult crocodiles. Staff tried to use long sticks to stop the crocodiles from attacking her, but those crocodiles were mighty hungry. The reptile farm owner said the farm, which has, like most Thai tourist attractions, extremely lax safety rules, had already installed additional fences and other security measures along the walkways. The crocodile will not be charged. BBC News
Passing their driving test (or getting held up at gunpoint) is no longer cab drivers’ biggest worry – now, they must also pass a smell test. Officials at San Diego International Airport are using body odor as a criteria for judging taxi drivers—and the cabbies aren’t happy, complaining it stinks of prejudice and discrimination. Body odor is now among 52 criteria that officials at San Diego International Airport use to judge taxi drivers, along with the usual proof of insurance, functioning windshield wipers, adequate tire treads, good brakes, etc. Anyone who flunks the smell test is told to go 体彩手机在线怎么下载 and change before picking up another customer. Sounds good to me, but not to Drivers with United Taxi Workers of San Diego who say the smell test perpetuates a stereotype that predominantly foreign-born taxi drivers smell bad. Body odor is body odor no matter where you’re from, but whatever, I’ve got an Uber account. Huffington Post
The Ebola virus has continued to terrorize West Africa, killing 2,461 so far and threatening the region’s economic growth. In fact, the Ebola crisis has gotten so out of hand that the U.S. announced it will step up efforts to combat the outbreak. On Tuesday, President Obama announced a plan to send 3,000 U.S. military personnel to the region with the intention of building 17 new health-care facilities with 100 beds each and training as many as 500 health-care workers a week. Others are doing a little less to reign in the highly contagious virus. Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has fired 10 government officials who have been “out of the country体彩手机在线怎么下载 without an excuse” amid the national crisis. “These government officials showed insensitivity to our national tragedy and disregard for authority,” said a statement from the president’s office. The ten senior officials were given a one-week ultimatum back in August to return to Liberia or they would be fired immediately. Turns out unemployment was more appealing than the chance of catching a viral hemorrhagic fever. Bloomberg
Al Qaeda is turning into one big softie. The terrorist organization responsible for the 9/11 attacks appealed to IS (the group formerly known as ISIS) to release the British hostage Alan Henning because it believed he was an innocent aid worker who was genuinely trying to help suffering Muslims. Al Qaeda told IS its capture of the British aid volunteer, who had traveled four thousand miles to deliver vital medical equipment to Syrian refugees, was simply unacceptable. In the Islamic State’s latest film showcasing the brutal beheading of aid worker David Haines, the IS militant warned Henning would be next. The question is, will IS listen to reason? No. When even al Qaeda makes you look bad, you knw you’re a horrible organization. Independent
93-year-old Oskar Groening has been charged with 300,000 counts of accessory to murder for serving as an SS guard at the Nazis’ Auschwitz death camp. Groening is accused of helping operate the death camp in occupied Poland between May and June 1944. The ex-nazi was responsible for taking the possessions of those imprisoned at Auschwitz. “He helped the Nazi regime benefit economically, and supported the systematic killings,” state prosecutors in Hanover, Germany, said. Groening has spoken openly about his experiences at the Nazi death camp but has said while he witnessed horrific atrocities, he didn’t commit any crimes himself. In 2005, he told Der Spiegel he recalled one incident on “ramp duty” when he heard a baby crying. “I saw another SS soldier grab the baby by the legs. He smashed the baby’s head against the iron side of a truck until it was silent.” Well, that will give the 93-year-old something to think about during his life sentence – which will probably only last a couple months. CNN
According to data prepared for use in a lawsuit against the National Football League brought by retired players and their families, nearly three in 10 former NFL players will face moderate to severe neurocognitive problems resulting from concussions.
Only 30%? Not bad! The data suggests that retired players are at twice the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, moderate dementia, Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS), and Parkinson’s disease than the general population between ages 20 and 60. But it’s not all bad news for the athletes. These semi-brain dead retired professional football players may qualify for payments under the proposed $765 million concussion settlement – if it’s approved. ESPN
” to do something about domestic violence, the conversative radio show host complained that NFL executives and sports journalists are “chickifying” football. Go on Rush… “This is crazy. We’re feminizing this game, and it’s a man’s game, ” Limbaugh said. “If we keep feminizing this game, we’re going to ruin it. Keep chickifying this game, we’re going to ruin it. It’s going to become something it was never intended to be. And so many men now, executives in the league and sports drive-bys are in a race to see who can be the most politically correct feminist guy. It’s comical to watch this.” So… in elevators somehow makes football more manly? Raw Story
Because sanctions have always worked so well against Russia in the past, the Obama administration and their European allies announced even more sanctions against the Motherland for its intervention in Ukraine. This time the US Treasury and European Union are going after the country体彩手机在线怎么下载’s largest bank, Sberbank. Along with the big banks, oil producers and defence companies will also be cut off from international finance and technology under the new sanctions. “The United States, in close cooperation with the European Union, will impose ever-increasing sanctions that further Russia’s isolation from the global financial system unless Russia abandons its current path and genuinely works toward a negotiated diplomatic resolution to the crisis,” said Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David S. Cohen. Whether the latest sanctions will stop Russian President Vladimir Putin from backing pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine is another question entirely – to which the answer is no. The Guardian
Nice try T.J. Lane. Actually, terrible try T.J. Lane. T.J. Lane, the teen who killed three students during an attack at Chardon High School in Ohio two years ago, was caught about 100 yards from the Ohio prison fence he had scaled to escape just hours earlier. The school shooter, who was sentenced to life without parole last year, escaped from the Allen Correctional Institution on Thursday with two other inmates. Authorities quickly launched a search in woods and a residential area near the prison. Lane was found early Friday in a wooded area close to the prison and is back in custody while prison authorities contemplate moving him to a maximum security prison. Considering he wore a T-shirt with “killer” written on it and made obscene gestures toward the victims’ families at his sentencing, I’m not sure why he was placed in a minimum security facility to begin with… Reuters
and her family members. Ahhh, to be a teenager again. BBC News
ISIS claims in a new video released Tuesday to have executed Steven Sotloff, the American journalist who was shown in last month’s video execution of James Foley.
In the last video, the terrorist group threatened Sotloff would be killed unless the U.S. stopped airstrikes in Iraq. Turns out, they weren’t messing around. Last week, the 31-year-old freelancer’s to the group to spare her son. “As a mother, I ask your justice to be merciful and not punish my son for matters he has no control over,” she said. Unfortunately for her, ISIS doesn’t appear to be human, so appealing to them as a mother was fruitless. Next up: a British national named David Cawthorne Haines, who ISIS threatened to execute after Sotloff’s beheading. But President Obama isn’t scared. Proclaiming the U.S “will not be intimidated” by the Islamist militants, Obama vowed that the U.S. will “degrade and destroy [ISIS] so that it is no longer a threat to Iraq, the region, and United States.” CNN
And in equally important news, it turns out Hello Kitty is not actually a cat. What!?! This is a cat-astrophe! Little girls and all of Japan were devastated to hear that the adorable little cartoon character is actually a human. Hello Kitty creator Sanrio confirmed that she’s actually a little girl who even has her own pet cat, Charmmy Kitty. Her real name is Kitty White, she has a twin sister and is perpetually in third grade. Plus, she lives in London — not Japan, despite the character’s identification with that country体彩手机在线怎么下载. I refuse to believe this. If she’s not a cat, why is she a cat? She has whiskers and cat ears. Third grader Brits don’t look like that. Case closed. People
, paving the way for implementation of a “stage-by-stage peace plan” for his country体彩手机在线怎么下载. The deal between Kiev and the pro-Russian separatists is conditional on one thing though: Ukraine, Russia and Europe’s OSCE security watchdog must all attend a meeting on Friday in Minsk. The rebels also said they were ready to declare a truce Friday if an agreement with Ukraine is reached. So hopefully no one skips the Minsk meeting… Washington Post
Talk about embarrassing fathers! And embarrassing sons for that matter… Rafael Cruz, the father of Tea Party darling and anti-Canadian Sen. Ted Cruz, has made some Clive Bundy-like comments. The Conservative activist argued that African-Americans need to be “educated” to oppose minimum wage laws, saying that “the average black” does not understand that the mimimum wage is bad. “If we increase the minimum wage, Black unemployment will skyrocket,” Cruz said during a speech to the Western Williamson County Republican Club in Texas last month. “See, he understands it, but the average Black does not.” The elder Cruz then went on to sell black voters on the GOP, telling the audience about the time he told a black pastor that “every member of the Ku Klux Klan were Democrats from the South” and blacks “need to be educated” about this stuff. I don’t think that’s the best way to reach out to the African American community and expand the GOP’s base, but I guess that’s something the average Cruz doesn’t understand. Raw Story
There’s been a shooting in Chicago and for once it wasn’t in the south and it wasn’t gang related. Nope, this time it was a disgruntled downtown executive. Chicago must do something about their WASP on WASP violence!
The gunman, a 59-year-old executive of the ArrowStream, went to the company’s downtown office and demanded a one-on-meeting with the CEO – during which he pulled out a gun and shot the CEO in the head and stomach. So much for all those “no gun” stickers on downtown buildings… The company has been downsizing and has demoted a number of people. Apparently the gunman was pissed about his demotion. But just how upset was he at the demotion? Well, after critically wounding the CEO, the disgruntled executive shot and killed himself – so I’d say he was pretty upset. Chicago Tribune
There’s only one thing Benjamin Netanyahu hates more than Palestinian civilians – TUNNELS! Speaking before a cabinet meeting in Tel Aviv on Thursday, the Israeli Prime Minister decalred that “with or without a cease-fire” the Israeli military will NOT stop its operation in Gaza until all the tunnels constructed by Hamas militants have been destroyed. After air strikes began, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) discovered an extensive network of tunnels leading from Gaza into Israel that Hamas has been using to launch attacks. So far, Israel has destroyed most of the 32 tunnels it has found, but the job won’t be done until the entire tunnel network is destroyed. To aid “Operation Tunnel No More” (or “Operation Protective Edge” as they call it), Israel is calling up another 16,000 reserves. Meanwhile, the Palestinians have bigger things to worry about – well, not really. The Israeli offensive is pretty much the biggest thing they have to worry about. BBC
Even worse than the reviews for the 1995 movie Outbreak is the latest Ebola outbreak in Liberia. West African leaders are stepping up emergency efforts in response to the worst-ever outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus. Leaders have canceled travel plans and authorized measures to combat the disease – including house-to-house searches and the deployment of the army and the police. Liberia announced it will close some of its schools and is even considering taking the drastic step of quarantining some communities. The country体彩手机在线怎么下载 also ordered all nonessential government workers to 30-day compulsory leave. The World Health Organization said the death toll in Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, and now Nigeria has risen to 729 from 672. Plus, things have gotten so serious that the Peace Corps said it will be withdrawing its 340 volunteers from the three countries most affected by the virus. You know things are getting bad when white people start fleeing the country体彩手机在线怎么下载… New York Times
Pot smokers of Seattle rejoice! A Seattle police officer, who was found to have single-handedly dished out roughly 80 percent of the ‘smoking marijuana in public’ tickets issued this year, has been reassigned. The unnamed officer, who referred to Washington’s voter-approved changes to marijuana laws as “silly”, attached notes to the tickets including one in which he noted he had flipped a coin to decide whether to issue the citation. The Seattle Police Department’s first biannual report also revealed that African Americans in Seattle were ticketed disproportionately to their population for using pot in public. About 36 percent of the tickets were handed out to black people, who make up just 8 percent of the city’s population. A cop with a vendetta against black people and pot smokers? Seems about right. Reuters
Parents Male Justices just don’t understand! In a wide-ranging interview with Yahoo’s Katie Couric, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg reaffirmed her criticism of the recent Hobby Lobby decision and said that five of her male counterparts on the court have “a blind spot” when it comes to women’s issues. After noting that all three female justices were in the minority in the recent Hobby Lobby decision, Couric asked Ginsburg if the five male justices in the majority truly understood their decision, to which Ginsburg responded, “I would have to say, no.” But on the bright side, Ginsburg said she expects the decision to be overturned one day. Perhaps the day Antonin Scalia dies? MSNBC
Not long after police arrested hundreds of protesters in Hong Kong for demanding more democracy, Beijing decided to crack down on Ramadan too.
Schools, government agencies, and local party organizations in the heavily Muslim northwest of China体彩手机在线怎么下载 have been ordered not to take part in the fasting during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. According to Chinese officials, the ban was aimed at “protecting students’ wellbeing” and preventing use of schools and government offices to promote religion. Unofficially, the Ramadan ban may have something to do with the tight security in Xianjiang following attacks that the government blames on violent Uighur Muslims with foreign terrorist ties. And to make sure everyone complies with the Ramadan fasting ban, government officials have apparently thrown parties and served food to test and see if Muslim residents are fasting. ABC News
For sale: Swett, North Dakota. If you’ve got $400,000 lying around and love trailer parks, listen up: Lance Benson, the sole owner of Swett, an unincorporated hamlet in Bennett County about two hours southeast of Rapid City, is putting the whole town up for sale. For the low, low price of $400k you can own the local Swett bar, a workshop, three trailers, a single house, and 6.16 acres of prime prairie real estate. With a population of two, Swett, North Dakota boasts a few lovely ramshackle buildings along U.S. Highway 18. But its prize possession is the Swett Tavern, a well known gathering place for a small army of local cowboys and wheatgrowers. So far no one is biting, but it’s safe to say the first order of business for the new owners will be a name change. Rapid City Journal