Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Women With Troubles - September 2015

Here is a compilation of women with troubles reported in news stories during September 2015. Each name is linked to an Interested-Participant blog entry displaying details.

For a more comprehensive listing, check the Women With Troubles category link.
(AR) Griselda Arrue, 37,
neighbor - Accused of negligent homicide and leaving the scene of an accident,

(AR) Brittney Breedlove, 29,
teacher - Charged with rape of two juvenile boys,

(AR) Mireya Lopez, 22,
neighbor - Accused of drowning her twin two-year-old sons,

(CA) Laura Lasek, 27,
teacher - Convicted of raping 15-year-old boy,

(CO) Jasmine Burlingame, 26,
neighbor - Accused of making false claim of sexual assault,

(CO) Ranada Jo Tate-Wood-Balletta, 34,
neighbor - Accused of felony child sexual assault,

(FL) Denise Hallowell, 54,
teacher - Accused of locking boy in room without food or water,

(FL) Kimberly Hendrix, 33,
neighbor - Accused of sex with two boys,

(FL) Shannon Murphy, 19,
neighbor - Arrested for theft of motor vehicle,

(FL) Stephanie Pensado, 24,
babysitter - Accused of sexual battery of teenage boy,

(FL) Heather Phillips,
neighbor - Accused of sex with daughter's ex-boyfriend,

(GA) Jennifer Stansbury, 36,
neighbor - Charged with burglary and arson,

(IL) Chelsey Wheeler, 26,
teacher - Gets four years probation for sex with male student,

(KS) Stephanie Francine Brannan, 24,
neighbor - Accused of sex with boy, 15,

(KS) Jammie Dannielle Hatfield, 27,
neighbor - Accused of first-degree murder,

(KY) Kim Davis,
county clerk - Arrested for not issuing marriage licenses,

(LA) Trenique C. Faciane, 41,
foster mother - Accused of second-degree murder in death of girl,

(MO) Brittany Mugrauer, 24,
neighbor - Accused of child endangerment,

(NC) Martinne Patricia Delavega, 51,
neighbor - Accused of castrating man,

(NC) Brittany Heath Killins, 29,
neighbor - Charged with assault with a deadly weapon,

(ND) Kathleen Schneider, 23, with husband, Russell Schneider,
neighbor - Pleaded guilty to sexually abusing girl, 15,

(NH) Katlin Paquette, 22,
neighbor - Accused of killing her daughter, 21 months,

(NM) Myca Ross, 28,
neighbor - Arrested for embezzling $15,000 from parent teacher organization,

(NY) Latasha Mitchell, 34,
neighbor - Guilty of sexual exploitation of a child,

(OH) Chelcie Gullett, 25,
basketball coach - Guilty of sexual battery of female player,

(OK) Shaynna Sims, 27,
neighbor - Accused of slashing the corpse of her boyfriend's ex-girlfriend,

(OR) Deanna Solinger, 42,
neighbor - Accused of disorderly conduct,

(TN) Judy Kiser,
neighbor - Accused of endangering the public with negligent driving,

(TX) Amanda Askari, 36,
teacher's aide - Sentenced to eight years probation for improper relationship with student,

(TX) Jennifer Lynn Dougherty,
neighbor - Accused of harboring a runaway,

(TX) Vanessa Pagel,
neighbor - Accused of arson,

(TX) Tanya Ramirez, 30,
teacher - Accused of sex with male student.

Thanks to the tipsters.

The latest: Catching sharks causes global warming!

Sharks are the unlikely heroes protecting humans from the perils of climate change, Deakin University researchers argue in today’s publication of esteemed science journal Nature Climate Change.

According to the Deakin University scientists, when humans kill sharks they cause instability in the ocean’s natural food chain, which can ultimately lead to the release of carbon from the seafloor into the earth’s atmosphere.

With fewer sharks in the food chain, populations of the predator’s food sources, such as sea turtles, flourish.

One of the sea turtles’ main food sources is seagrass, which store vast reservoirs of carbon within sediments. With more sea turtles consuming more seagrass, the carbon is unlocked and can be released into the earth’s atmosphere, thereby accelerating climate change.

After examining available data from across the world, the team from Deakin’s Centre for Integrative Ecology within the School of Life and Environmental Sciences is now calling for urgent research to further investigate the consequences of shark-culling practises throughout the earth’s oceans.

The Deakin project’s lead researcher, Dr Peter Macreadie, said that sharks and other predators were being over-harvested by humans.

“For a long time we’ve known that changes to the structure of food webs - particularly due to loss of top predators such as sharks – can alter ecosystem function,” Dr Macreadie said.

“In science, the consequence is what is known as a trophic meltdown. With the loss of around 90 per cent of the ocean’s top predators from around the globe, the occurrences of trophic meltdowns are now widespread.

“In our article, we report the trickle down effects on the capacity of the oceans to trap and store carbon.

“There are multiple ecosystems by which this can occur, but the most profound examples occur in the coastal zone, within seagrass, saltmarsh, and mangrove ecosystems – commonly known as ‘blue carbon’ ecosystems.

“In the case of sharks and turtles, sharks eat turtles, which in turn eat seagrasses. But when sharks disappear, the turtles have a tendency to run wild and the seagrass ecosystems cannot sustain the turtle populations.

“The turtles overgraze, and, as a consequence, we’re seeing large reductions in seagrass carbon stocks.”

Dr Macreadie said this had played out in Shark Bay, Western Australia, where fewer sharks as a result of hunting had led to carbon storage rates less than half the amount in areas which were abundant with sharks.

“At the extreme level, we see turtles without predation pressure eating themselves out of house and home and destabilising carbon stocks that have been locked away for millennia,” he said.

Dr Macreadie said losing sharks and other top predators from the ocean interfered with the ocean’s carbon cycle and can accelerate global warming.

“Stronger conservation efforts and stricter fishing regulations are needed to reinstate the important role that predators play in the ocean’s carbon cycle,” he said.

“It’s about restoring balance so that we have, for example, healthy and natural numbers of both sea turtles and sharks.”

The researchers say while there is limited data on the topic, they believe further studies will reiterate their findings. This research is the first to explicitly link the loss of major ocean predators, including sharks and other top sea animals, to the loss of stored blue carbon.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Tennessee Woman Arrested

Judy Kiser

(Johnson City, Tennessee)
Johnson City police said they got a report of a suspicious vehicle, Monday, on N. State of Franklin Road and tried to stop Judy Kiser of Elizabethton.

Instead, they reported she jumped into a vehicle, eluded an attempted traffic stop and endangered the public with negligent driving.

Officers found the vehicle she was driving wrecked into a guardrail on Indian Ridge Road, just west of Brandonwood Drive.

Georgia Woman Accused of Setting Fire

Jennifer Stansbury

(Statesboro, Georgia) A 36-year-old local woman, Jennifer Stansbury, has been arrested for setting fire to the home of another female.

Stansbury has been arrested and booked into the Bulloch County Jail. She faces counts of burglary and arson.

Fast food doesn't make you fat

The CDC says so.  See the summary of their research report below.  The final sentence is the kicker

In 2011–2012, children and adolescents aged 2–19 consumed an average 12.4% of their daily calories from fast food. Adolescents aged 12–19 consumed twice the average daily percentage of calories from fast food than did younger children. The percentage of calories from fast food differed by age and race and Hispanic origin. Overall, non-Hispanic Asian children and adolescents consumed a lower percentage of calories from fast food compared with the other race and Hispanic groups. Previous studies have reported that acculturation to the U.S. lifestyle plays an important role in the adoption of unhealthy behaviors, such as fast food consumption, in Asian-American and other immigrant groups (4,5). In 2011–2012, a greater percentage of non-Hispanic Asian children and adolescents were foreign-born (27.4%), compared with Hispanic (19.7%), non-Hispanic white (2.5%), and non-Hispanic black (1.9%) children and adolescents (data not shown). This analysis found no significant differences in fast food consumption by poverty status or weight status among children and adolescents.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

New Hampshire Mom Accused of Killing Daughter

Katlin Paquette

(Manchester, New Hampshire) A 22-year-old local woman, Katlin Paquette, has been accused of killing her 21-month-old daughter, Sadence Willott.
There are still memorials on the steps of the apartment building at 437 Belmont St. where Paquette lived with her daughter. Investigators said she was arrested after an intensive police investigation.

"The arrest happened a little after 3 o'clock in the afternoon on Saturday here in Manchester," Senior Assistant Attorney General Benjamin Agati said. "At that point, Katlin Paquette was placed under arrest for second-degree murder and was charged with killing Sadence Willott, her daughter."
A court appearance is scheduled for October 13.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Florida Woman Wounded in Shootout

Shannon Murphy

(Barberville, Florida)
Authorities have arrested a pregnant woman who, officials say, was driving a stolen truck when she was wounded and her passenger was killed in a shootout with central Florida deputies.

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office reports that 19-year-old Shannon Murphy was released from a Daytona Beach hospital Friday and then arrested on a Jackson County warrant for grand theft of a motor vehicle.
Big trouble, eh?

Arkansas Woman Arrested for Fatal Hit-and-Run

Griselda Arrue

(Springdale, Arkansas) A 37-year-old local woman, Griselda Arrue, is the suspect in a fatal hit-and-run.
At approximately 12:30 a.m. at Robinson and Thompson, Hector Regalado Sandoval, 45, was struck by a vehicle as he was attempting to cross the street. Officials pronounced him dead at the scene. The woman with him was reportedly injured and taken to the hospital.

Nearby surveillance footage helped police identify the suspect, 37-year-old Griselda Arrue, which shows her leaving the scene of the accident.
Arrue faces charges of leaving the scene of an accident and negligent homicide.

Australia: Is Clueless Clemmie emulating that vicious British lawyer feminist?

I want to say something about Clementine Ford's latest emission just to provide the balance that her Fascist thinking lacks but I am initially a little struck by her new photo.  See above.

Her old photo with its furiously red lipstick still accompanies her actual column but on the main page of the SMH there is now a much softer picture of her.  Is she hoping to trap rebarbative old reactionaries like me into praising her looks?  After the Charlotte Proudperson episode in Britain she should be so lucky!  NEVER praise a feminist's looks!  So what is the new image about?  Does she want a Lesbian bit on the side?  I guess that's it. Lesbian couples I have known did have one attractive female.

But on to the important stuff:  In a typical Fascist way, she wants the government to solve our problems -- in this case the problem of violence against women.  But how CAN a government do that?  Turnbull has announced that he will spend a lot of money on it but that is just window-dressing.  Is he going to put a policeman in every home? Of course not.  Governments may be able to scratch at the margins of the problem but large and inherited  male/female differences will always be there and will in extreme and rare cases result in frustrations great enough to evoke violence.

All that the polity can reasonably do is provide refuges for threatened women and severe punishment for those men who do physically attack women.  But as far as I can tell, that is already pretty much in place.  Some problems will never be completely solved and a mature person learns to know when an  asymptote (limit) has been approached.

Just some excerpts from Clemmie below -- JR

Over the two, long years that Tony Abbott was Prime Minister, very little was done to address the scourge of men's violence against women. This sustained, brutal form of misogyny currently sees around 6 women killed per month while claiming the lives of just under 60 women this year*. Despite the arrogant appointment of himself to the office of Prime Minister for Women, Abbott's interest in issues affecting women's lives remained rooted in the retro ideology that assumes our greatest challenges lie in feeding our families and keeping our energy bills down.

Indeed, rather than direct even a skerrick of the attention given to combating fictional terror threats and desperate refugees fleeing war-torn countries, the Abbott government actually withdrew funding from organisations offering vital services to the victims of family violence. During the exit speech supposedly listing all of the successes of his government, Abbott reemphasised his disinterest in the impact of family violence when he said, "Then there's the challenge of ice and domestic violence, yet to be addressed."


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Dakota Woman Sentenced for Child Porn

Kathleen Schneider

(Bismarck, North Dakota) A 23-year-old local woman, Kathleen Schneider, has been sentenced to 41 months in prison after she pleaded guilty to possession of material involving the sexual exploitation of a minor.

Schneider may be released in slightly less than three years.
Schneider, along with her husband, Russell Schneider, originally was accused, and charged in state court, with sexually abusing a 15-year-old girl.

Russell Schneider, who has signaled his intent to plead guilty, allegedly sent photos of his wife and the girl committing sexual acts in the shower to an undercover police officer.

Supermoon - Lunar Eclipse - Bloodmoon

From IFL Science website...
[Tonight] (September 27), observers around the world are set to be in for a treat as two celestial events combine. In a rare occurrence, the Moon will reach its closest point to Earth (known as a supermoon) at the same time as it undergoes an eclipse, the first such alignment since 1982 – and the last until 2033.
The moon will appear deep red, called a "bloodmoon," during the total eclipse which will occur between 10:11 p.m. to 11:23 p.m. EDT. Happy viewing.

Posted by Note Taker

Obama as Nero

The burdens Obama has placed on America are great so the question is how lasting they are.  After Obama is gone, will America's freedom and prosperity continue to deteriorate or will they bounce back?  Much will depend on the resolve of the president who replaces Obama.  A timid Republican would not attempt to wind back the clock and even the banishment of crybaby Boehner has not banished Republican timidity. Leftist expectations still rule America in many ways.

Only Trump would appear to have the independence and resolve needed to put the destructive policies into reverse.  Otherwise the great weight of regulations (from the EPA and elsewhere) that now exist will continue to exercise their destructive force and will slowly smother America.  But Trump so far has only an outside chance so what if Hillary or some milksop Republican is elected next year?  Will that be the final nail in the coffin?

Perhaps not.  For a long time, many people, including America's revolutionaries, looked to ancient Rome for lessons.  Many of the ancient empires of the Far-East were big, powerful and long-lasting but only Rome seemed to be "like us".  So does Rome have lessons that could encourage us today?  I believe it does.

When Caesar's conquests expanded the Roman republic into the Roman empire, he inherited a great legacy of balanced and substantially democratic government from his predecessors.  The Senate was democratically elected by the upper class and there was also a "tribunis plebis" to represent the ordinary people of Rome.  And government functions were split up so that much power could not be concentrated in one man's hands.  By disobeying the Senate and crossing the Rubicon river with his army, Caesar offended against that division of power.  So they killed him.

But Humpty Dumpty could not be put back together again. Armies had become too powerful. Caesar had replaced democratic government with military rule and military rule would continue.  At that juncture, however, Rome was extraordinarily fortunate.  The victor in the military struggles to replace Caesar was the man we now  call Augustus.  That August in our calendar follows July celebrates the memory that Augustus followed Julius Caesar in ruling Rome.

And Augustus was wise enough to draw from the Roman past many lessons about government.  Although the Senators had murdered Caesar, Augustus did not abolish the Senate but converted it into a sounding board for his policies.  They had no power during his reign but still had influence.

He expanded the borders of the empire but through strong and wise rule gave the core of the empire a long period of peace and prosperity.  He adapted the wisdom of old, Republican Rome to form a strong new system of governance for the Roman empire.  And he ruled Rome for 45 years until his death at age 75 in the year 14 AD.

And that long rule set the precedent for how Rome was to be governed thenceforth.  Rome was again ruled not only by men but also by a system of government, a system that had deep roots in the Republic but had been successfully and convincingly made the new normal by Augustus.

Romans now expected their governments to be of a certain type  -- an Augustan type. The reign of Augustus was immensely influential in the minds of Romans -- and later emperors were judged by that criterion.  Rulers who did not provide government along roughly Augustan lines did not last.  A powerful SYSTEM now ruled Rome and Rome prospered greatly under it, even undergoing further expansion of the empire.  So even rather bad emperors such as Nero still kept the system going to some extent and Rome survived him well.  The empire kept expanding and reached its greatest extent under emperor Trajan some decades later.

So I think we can now see the parallels.  Like Nero, Obama has been destructive but American political forms and expectations have been preserved.  The system that is America still exists much as it always has done.  There is a strength in America in the form of the customary systems of law and government that continue to exist. And those systems rest on nothing so fragile as laws.  They exists in the expectations that Americans hold about how things should be done.  Those expectations have given prosperity and substantial freedom to Americans in the past and will continue to do so.  America can withstand its traitor president -- JR.

Note:  I refer to Nero above only because he is well known -- but there were of course other bad emperors

Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Pope Francis Visits America

Pope Francis keeps up with his challenging schedule by maintaining a strict personal regimen. Reportedly, he is in his bedroom by 9pm, awakes at 4:00am (naturally), prays for 2 hours before seeing anyone, and takes at least one 40-minute nap during the day. His 6-day trip to Washington, New York, and Philadelphia in the United States will end on Sunday.

Schedule: 2015 Apostolic Journey Of Pope Francis To The USA

  4:00 p.m.  Arrival from Cuba at Joint Base Andrews
  9:15 a.m.  Welcome ceremony & meeting with President Obama at White House
11:00 a.m.  Papal Parade along the Ellipse and the National Mall (time approximate)
11:30 a.m.  Midday Prayer w/ bishops of the United States, St. Matthew's Cathedral
  4:15 p.m.  Mass of Canonization of Junipero Serra, Basilica of the National Shrine
  9:20 a.m.  Address to Joint Meeting of the United States Congress
11:15 a.m.  Visit to St. Patrick in the City & Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese
  4:00 p.m.  Depart from Joint Base Andrews
  5:00 p.m.  Arrival at John F. Kennedy International Airport
  6:45 p.m.  Evening Prayer (Vespers) at St. Patrick's Cathedral
  8:30 a.m.  Visit to the United Nations and Address to the UN General Assembly
11:30 a.m.  Multi-religious service at 9/11 Memorial and Museum, World Trade Center
  4:00 p.m.  Visit to Our Lady Queen of Angels School, East Harlem
  5:00 p.m.  Procession through Central Park (time approximate)
  6:00 p.m.  Mass at Madison Square Garden
  8:40 a.m.  Departure from John F. Kennedy International Airport
  9:30 a.m.  Arrival at Atlantic Aviation, Philadelphia
10:30 a.m.  Mass at Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul, Philadelphia
  4:45 p.m.  Visit to Independence Mall
  7:30 p.m.  Visit to Festival of Families Benjamin Franklin Parkway
  9:15 a.m.  Meeting w/ bishops, St. Martin's Chapel, St. Charles Borromeo Seminary
11:00 a.m.  Visit to Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility
  4:00 p.m.  Mass @ conclusion of World Meeting of Families, Benjamin Franklin Pkwy
  7:00 p.m.  Visit w/ World Meeting organizers, volunteers & benefactors
  8:00 p.m.  Departure for Rome

Sunday's 4pm Holy Mass at the Philadelphia Museum of Art steps is expected to attract over a million people.

Posted by Note Taker

Teacher Fined for Stealing Rocks

A MASVINGO teacher has been fined for illegally removing 50 rocks from the Great Zimbabwe monuments in the historic city.

Nicholas Zengeya, 51, was fined $30 or 15 days in jail should he fail to pay.

He pleaded guilty to contravening the National Museums and Moments Act when he appeared before the Masvingo magistrate Oliver Mudzongachiso on Thursday.

Zengeya said he was not aware that it was crime to collect rocks from national heritage sites.

Trump the Presbyterian

Donald Trump has undoubtedly been a sinner in his life but forgiveness of sin is central to Christianity so I cannot see any true Christian shunning him for that.  What his heart holds is what matters. John 3:16

I make no judgment on what doctrines he believes but even if he is basically an atheist, which seems possible, he is still very  clearly a cultural Christian -- as I am. I value the lessons of my Christian youth and still believe that the Bible is the best guide to a good life and is the bedrock of Western civilization.  Although I have been an atheist for all of my adult life,  I regularly defend Christianity -- and Trump does too.

In a Left-dominated age, Christians need all the friends they can get and, whatever he believes, it is clear that Trump would be a powerful and unabashed supporter of Christians. Trump for President! -- JR

Donald Trump recently showed up at a gathering of Iowa conservative Christian voters with a copy of the Bible in hand.

As the Republican presidential front-runner and billionaire businessman tries to maintain his lead in early polls with rivals quickly gaining ground, Trump is increasingly courting a wing of the Republican Party that might seem antithetical to his brand: evangelical Christians.

“I love them. They love me,” Trump, a Presbyterian, said of evangelicals last month in Greenville, South Carolina. “I love the Evangelicals, and it’s really shown in the polls.”

After initially declining the invitation, Trump will be speaking Friday in front of an expected 2,000 social conservative leaders at the Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit in Washington. He joins a speaking program that includes Republican rivals with long records of dedication to religious causes — among them, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a Baptist pastor, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

In many ways, Trump’s brand as the bombastic, thrice-married billionaire showman would seem an ill-fit among religious conservatives. He once held a reputation as a womanizing playboy, previously supported abortion rights, and appears to spend more time calling into Sunday morning talk shows than attending church.

Russell Moore, the president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, said Trump’s candidacy is fundamentally opposed to Christian values.

“When one looks at the very serious moral character questions, from Trump’s involvement in the casino gambling industry all the way through to his attitude toward women, Donald Trump is the embodiment of everything that evangelical Christians have been standing against in American culture,” he said.

Social conservatives are eager to have “a conversation” with Trump about his previous support for abortion rights, among other positions most conservatives strongly oppose, said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, which is hosting the Value Voters Summit.

On Monday he’s set to host a group of evangelical pastors and bishops from across the country for a private meeting and prayer session at Trump Tower in New York.

Several attendees, including Pastor Lionel Traylor of Jackson, Mississippi, said evangelical voters are particularly drawn to Trump’s direct style and his strong defense of Christians at a time “when Christianity is under attack.” Trump has frequently made reference to attacks on Christians abroad and said that he will be a champion for religious liberty, including defending Christmas.

Trump’s relationship with evangelical leaders goes back far longer than he’s been running for president.

According to previously reported tax documents, the Donald J. Trump Foundation has given to numerous Christian causes in recent years, including $100,000 to the Billy Graham Evangelist Association in 2012, as well as ministries as far away as Debra George Ministries in Texas and the Ramp Church in Lynchburg, Virginia.

Monday’s gathering is expected to open with a prayer service and include discussion of issues affecting the preachers’ communities, said Trump Organization attorney Michael Cohen, who struck up a friendship with Scott.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Friday, September 25, 2015

Texas Woman Arrested for Arson

Vanessa Pagel

(Spring, Texas) A local woman, Vanessa Pagel, has been jailed for setting her house on fire to get attention.

According to Captain Dean Hensley with the Harris County Fire Marshal's Office,
"Our investigation found that Vanessa Pagel intentionally set her house on fire. She confessed to fire investigators that she set several fires to get attention."
Pagel faces an arson charge.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Texas Runaway Case

Jennifer Lynn Dougherty

(Dallas, Texas) An adult woman from Wisconsin, Jennifer Lynn Dougherty, has been accused of doing the jiggy-jiggy with a 14-year-old boy who runaway to play a game.

Dougherty in custody pending a detention hearing. She faces charges of harboring a runaway.

Aren't we clever?  Or so the latest crop of bright-eyed Warmists seems to think

The story below is that global average temperatures are not a good index of global warming.  That seems to me to be a contradiction in terms but let logic go by for now.  The claim is that we should look at the occurrence of extreme events instead.  And we should look at them not in terms of overall averages but rather at what occurs in different parts of the globe.  The logic of that is also suspect (It's called "cherry-picking") but let that go by too.

So with the benefit of much indulgence, we have a large claim that global warming began much sooner that is usually said.  But on what is that claim based?  If we go back to the original academic journal article -- a pesky habit of mine -- we find more limited claims.  And, most crucially, we find that the whole thing is just a modelling exercise, not a survey of real world data.  I think we just need to know one sentence from the journal article.  Here it is -- from the "Conclusions" section of the paper:

"This study suggests that for much of the world, the anthropogenic emergence of temperature extremes has already occurred as of the present date, at least in model simulations"

It's just computer games for grown-ups.  No Warmist model has predicted anything accurately yet so let that be a guide to you in assessing this article

We Could Have Discovered Climate Change As Early As the 1940s if We Had Just Looked

The signs of global warming are hitting us over the head today — if you’ll remember, the fire and drought-ridden summer of 2015 was the also hottest in recorded history — but how long has our planet actually been feeling the heat? In parts of the tropics, anthropogenic climate change has been tinkering with the thermometer since the 1940s.

That’s the surprising conclusion of a new modelling study published today in Environmental Research Letters. Running 23 global climate simulations that combine historical trends (beginning in 1860) with future emissions scenarios, researchers at the University of New South Wales estimated when the very first fingerprints of climate warming — extreme temperatures and shifts in the mean annual temperature — would have become measurable across the world, had we been paying any attention. Near the equator, the writing was on the wall decades before the concept of anthropogenic climate change had been realised.

“Remarkably our research shows that you could already see clear signs of global warming in the tropics by the 1960s but in parts of Australia, South East Asia and Africa it was visible as early as the 1940s,” said lead study author Andrew King in a statement. (That’s decades before the the fore-thinking researchers at Exxon discovered global warming!)

Climate change is hitting high latitude ecosystems the hardest — the Arctic, for instance, is warming twice as fast as the world at large. For that reason — and the fact that most big research universities are located in countries with seasons — what’s happening in the tropics has been largely ignored. But as the new study shows, tropical ecosystems may offer an even better long-term thermometer. Lacking a distinct summer and winter, the tropics have a much narrower distribution of temperatures year-round, which makes it easier, statistically speaking, to spot small deviations and outliers years.

And while the tropics are experiencing smaller levels of warming than, say, boreal forests, climate change stands to wreak even more ecological havoc around the equator....

SOURCE.  The paper is "The timing of anthropogenic emergence in simulated climate extremes" by A.D. King et al.  It is such useless stuff that I will not reproduce any more of it.

Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Bitcoin Ponzi Scheme

(New York)
A Texas man pleaded guilty to defrauding people out of $4.5 million in what the U.S. said was a first-of-its-kind Ponzi scheme involving investments in the virtual currency bitcoin.

Trendon Shavers, 33, founder of Bitcoin Savings and Trust, raised at least 764,000 bitcoins by promising investors a return of as much as 3,641 percent, prosecutors said. Instead, he used bitcoins from new investors to cover payments owed to earlier clients, while also paying for his own Las Vegas gambling and spa treatments, according to the U.S.

At the peak of his scheme in 2011 and 2012, Shavers held about 7 percent of all bitcoins in circulation, prosecutors said.

“I know what I did was wrong and am very sorry,” Shavers said at a court hearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn in Manhattan Monday.
Shavers is scheduled to be sentenced in February.

I am still a skeptic

The Associated Press has just revised their stylebook to say that both "climate skeptic" and "climate denier" are now deplored. Journalists should now say "climate change doubters" or "those who reject mainstream climate science".

Anthony Watts has said that he too will adopt AP usage.  He does generally try to maintain some respectability in establishment circles so that decision is to be expected of him.  And he may be wise to do so.

I however have zero inclination to make nice with frauds and charlatans, so will continue to call myself and similar others "skeptics".

I in fact probably deserve the title of skeptic more than almost anyone else.  My many papers in the journals attest that I am totally skeptical of the mainstream claims within my own field of political psychology and that is only my starting point.

I also don't believe in Jesus Christ, Karl Marx or Global warming.  I further don't believe in the adverse health effects of dietary fat, salt or sugar.  And I most certainly don't believe that Leftists are "compassionate".

Am I the world's most skeptical person?  Could be.  And perhaps because I am not burdened by any false beliefs, I live a very  happy life.

UPDATE:  Someone has suggested that, as well as saying what I do not believe in I should also say what I DO believe in.  And that is very easy.  I believe in all the things that Leftists consider stupid and old-fashioned:  Honesty, truth, frankness, objectivity, integrity, morality, humility, generosity, kindness, laughter, courage, justice (without adjectives) and, above all, the central importance of children and the family.  How crazy can you get? I am old now so what I think matters little but I am pleased that my mathematician son has similar values.  He even laughs at my jokes!

Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Florida Child Abuse Case

Denise Hallowell

(Inverness, Florida)
A 54-year-old woman from Inverness is accused of locking a boy in a room – without access to food or water – for days at a time. Denise Hallowell, who deputies identified as a teacher, was arrested Monday.[…]

The boy told detectives Hallowell kept him locked in a bedroom with just an air mattress and a bucket for a toilet. The suspect allegedly nailed the room’s windows shut and “snowed” them out to prevent a view.

Hallowell locked the door from the outside with both a regular lock and a chain lock, according to the Sheriff’s Office. “(The victim) was without food or water for days at a time and only allowed to come out of his room to do chores, which Hallowell made him do naked,” deputies said.

Arizona Mom Accused of Murdering Her Sons

Mireya Lopez

(Maricopa County, Arizona) A 22-year-old local woman, Mireya Lopez, has been accused of drowning her twin 2-year-old sons because they were not loved.

Lopez has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder.
Lopez told investigators Sunday she drowned her twin 2-year-old sons in a bathtub at her home, according to police reports. She then swaddled them in blankets in an upstairs bedroom.

Police said Lopez also attempted to drown her 3-year-old stepbrother.
Lopez is in jail with bond set at $2 million.

Florida Woman and Daughter's Boyfriend

Heather Phillips

(Port St. Lucie, Florida) A local woman, Heather Phillips, has been accused of engaging in sex with her daughter's ex-boyfriend.

Phillips faces counts of lewd and lascivious behavior.
According to the police report, the 15-year-old boy told detectives he's been having a sexual relationship with Phillips since mid-August, about two months after he and his girlfriend broke up.

The teen even said they had unprotected sex seven times on the night of Sept. 6.
Seven times, eh? OK.

Why do we hear nothing from the Greenies about Third World cooking fires?

Using wood and cow dung to make cooking fires is widepread throughout South Asia.  It is so prevalent that much of South Asia has a resultant "brown cloud" hanging over it most of the time. It's pollution so bad that it can be seen from space. And that has been known since 2002.

Breathing in the originating smoke down on the ground is an obvious health hazard -- far worse for you than CO2 will ever be.  Just try breathing in the smoke from a cooking fire yourself if you doubt it.

So if those wonderfully "compassionate" Green Leftists who worry so much about the health impacts of global warming were actually sincere, they would be exerting great efforts to protect Asians from this scourge, don't you think?

But there is only one way to give the poor of the Third world an escape from such hazards:  Give them at least a mini version of a modern kitchen.  And that mostly means supplying them with electricity.

Horrors! say the Greenies.  We can't have that!  Generating more electricity will add to global warming.  So Greenies oppose all efforts by Third world countries to supply their people with electricity.  They even bully Western banks into not lending money for hydro-electric dam building.  Greenies hate dams too.

So let the poor of the world die of lung disease!  That is the Greenie gospel.  You see how "caring" they are.

The article below puts some numbers on the problem. Over 3 million people die from the smoke each year.  But note that the study  only covers outdoor cooking.  But a lot of Third world cooking is indoors, which obviously gives much more exposure to smoke.  So many millions more must be the overall death toll -- JR

The contribution of outdoor air pollution sources to premature mortality on a global scale

J. Lelieveld et al.


Assessment of the global burden of disease is based on epidemiological cohort studies that connect premature mortality to a wide range of causes1, 2, 3, 4, 5, including the long-term health impacts of ozone and fine particulate matter with a diameter smaller than 2.5 micrometres (PM2.5)3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. It has proved difficult to quantify premature mortality related to air pollution, notably in regions where air quality is not monitored, and also because the toxicity of particles from various sources may vary10. Here we use a global atmospheric chemistry model to investigate the link between premature mortality and seven emission source categories in urban and rural environments. In accord with the global burden of disease for 2010 (ref. 5), we calculate that outdoor air pollution, mostly by PM2.5, leads to 3.3 (95 per cent confidence interval 1.61–4.81) million premature deaths per year worldwide, predominantly in Asia. We primarily assume that all particles are equally toxic5, but also include a sensitivity study that accounts for differential toxicity. We find that emissions from residential energy use such as heating and cooking, prevalent in India and China, have the largest impact on premature mortality globally, being even more dominant if carbonaceous particles are assumed to be most toxic. Whereas in much of the USA and in a few other countries emissions from traffic and power generation are important, in eastern USA, Europe, Russia and East Asia agricultural emissions make the largest relative contribution to PM2.5, with the estimate of overall health impact depending on assumptions regarding particle toxicity. Model projections based on a business-as-usual emission scenario indicate that the contribution of outdoor air pollution to premature mortality could double by 2050.

"Nature", 2015

Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Louisiana Foster Mom Accused of Killing Toddler

Trenique C. Faciane

(Covington, Louisiana) A 41-year-old foster mother, Trenique C. Faciane, has been accused of second-degree murder in the death of a 22-month-old girl.
She is accused of beating Madison Parrott with a hairbrush, shaking her, and dropping her into a bathtub on May 21.

Parrott died at Children's Hospital in New Orleans the next day.
Faciane's bond was set at $1 million.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Oregon Woman Accused of Attempted Assault on Officer

Deanna Solinger

(Coos Bay, Oregon) A 42-year-old local woman, Deanna Solinger, has been accused of disorderly conduct after she "fought against the deputy’s efforts to arrest her."
Solinger proceeded to kick the back of the patrol vehicle and when the deputy tried to prevent her from hurting herself or damaging the vehicle, she kicked the deputy in the chest and made other attempts to kick him otherwise, the report says.
Solinger was arrested and booked into the Coos County Jail.

Reversing the destruction of agricultural land

Viv Forbes below does not mention a relevant matter. He directs our attention to a talk by Savory which is an absolute eye-opener and we must be profoundly grateful for Savory's work.  But Savory  does justify his proposals as assisting with global warming.  That is just good politicking however.  By doing that Savory gets more people onside.  But his work is good for much more than global warming. It is truly a great leap forward in the management of agricultural land. I have always seen soil erosion as the environmental challenge that most needs attention but because the Greenies are really motivated by hatred of people rather than real care for the environment, I have yet to see concern about soil erosion from them -- JR

People send me things; lots of things - compliments, abuse, information and advice.

One correspondent is “Coochie” a wannabee grass-farmer who lives in town but reads all the latest stuff on managing grazing animals. He reads things like “Mother Earth” and “Stockman Grass Farmer”.

Coochie recently rebuked me.

“Please tell Farmer Fred that grazing animals are far better than ‘carbon neutral’. In fact they are the only hope for reversing desertification of the world’s grasslands and open forests. If managed properly, grazing herds will remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, reduce soil erosion, improve soil fertility and increase vegetative cover. They should earn ‘carbon credits’.”

I was all ears.

“You and Fred should study the work of Allan Savory. Allan is an observant honest ecologist who has spent his life worrying about desertification, which can be both a cause and a result of climate change. Initially, he hated grazing animals – he thought they were causing desertification and destroying his beloved wildlife.

“But a life-time of study of the whole system showed him it was neither the cloven hooves nor the animal numbers that caused desertification. The problem was how they grazed – how long, how intense. When hard-hoof animals are concentrated on small areas of land for short periods of time, they break up the hard crust and cover it with litter, dung and seeds. Then, when the herd moves on to seek new clean pastures, the abandoned areas recover quickly with improved soil and replanted pasture. This process restores the health of grasses and soil, returning much life-supporting carbon to the soil in the process.

“What turns grasslands into deserts is constant grazing by a few animals. Herds must be concentrated and moving.”

I insisted that Fred come over and listen to Alan Savory, telling us "How to green the world's deserts and reverse climate change"

After he listened to it, Fred was stunned. He was always sceptical of our “funny ideas” on rotational grazing but suddenly he understood.

“Well, my boy” he said. “So much for all that rot from your Professor mate attacking us graziers and lauding soft-footed animals. It makes sense – soft-footed rabbits spread everywhere and destroyed everything with their constant nibbling; but one or two massive moving herds of bison, bunched and harassed by wolves and Indians and assisted by occasional fires, created the marvellous grasslands of the Prairies.

“Our cattle and sheep can be much more than grass harvesters and providers of periodic protein for people and predators. They can cultivate soil, prepare seed beds, spread seeds and mulch, and fertilise our grasslands and pastures in just one pass; but only if we concentrate them properly, and then give the pasture a decent rest-and-recovery period.”

“This Un-Savory chap will probably be expelled from the Deep Green Brotherhood for such blasphemy.”

Coochie was ecstatic: “With plenty of plant-sustaining emissions from coal in the skies, and soil-sustaining emissions from cattle in the soils, then coal and cattle can paint the grasslands green again.”


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Florida Babysitter Accused of Sexual Battery

Stephanie Pensado

(Miami, Florida) A 24-year-old local babysitter, Stephanie Pensado, has been accused of sexual battery for engaging in sex with a teenage boy.

Reportedly, Pensado had sex with the victim at her home eight times.

Pensado faces eight felony counts of sexual battery.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Colorado Woman Accused of Felony Child Sex

Ranada Jo Tate-Wood-Balletta

(Grand Junction, Colorado) A 34-year-old woman, Ranada Jo Tate-Wood-Balletta, has been accused of felony child sexual assault for abusing a young boy.
The boy — interviewed multiple times by investigators after child welfare workers in Montrose alerted police — described years of forced mutual touching, oral sex on the boy, and the use of sex aids between both of them.

The boy and another child also described times when Tate-Wood-Balletta forced them to take overtly sexual photos of herself, photos later posted to Internet sites and directly sent to other people, according to the report.
Tate-Wood-Balletta faces counts of sexual assault on a child, sexual assault on a child as a pattern of abuse, and sexual assault on a child from a position of trust.

The vanishing island (?)

The excerpt below is part of a big and colorful feature in the Sydney Morning Herald.  It claims that a small island in the Pacific is being swamped by global warming -- but gives no actual proof of that.  Since the satellites have detected no global warming for over 18 years now, that would be very difficult to do.

A careful reading of the article reveals two things:  1). It is tsunamis that are the main problem for the islanders;  and: 2). There has been a sea level rise in that part of the Pacific which is much greater than the global average.

So here comes my favorite weapon: Logic.  If the water level rise is not global, how can it be an effect of global warming?  It is clearly a local effect due to variations in ocean currents and the like.  And as a LOCAL effect, it has nothing to do with GLOBAL warming.

OK.  What I have just said is probable rather than logically entailed but there would need to be evidence of some process linking the two phenomena.  But since one of the phenomena does not even exist, that would be hard.  The SMH does not attempt one.

So what we have below is just the usual dishonest propaganda that we so often get from Left-leaning rags like the SMH.  They do pull their punches to a degree at one point but an uncritical reader would conclude that the fate of the island is tied to global warming --JR

Taro Island: a sometimes picturesque coral atoll adrift in the ocean at the north-western tip of the Solomon Islands.

Barely a kilometre long and less across and almost none of it more than two metres above sea level, it is barely a smudge on a map. Yet this smudge - with its nearly 600 permanent residents, its hospital, churches (four), school, police station and courthouse - is set to take an unwanted place in history. Though tiny, it is the capital of the province of Choiseul. Soon it may be the first provincial capital in the world to be abandoned due to climate change.

In the wash of environmental and geopolitical changes that flow from the warming of the planet, Taro is a drop in the ocean. But it is also an early marker of what lies ahead. As Peter Dutton joked with Tony Abbott about water lapping at the doors of Pacific Islanders, the people of Taro were weighing warnings that their home would be among the first - of dozens? hundreds? thousands? - of largely blameless communities swallowed by the ocean as sea levels rise.

Plans have been drawn up. The people are ready. But they have a nagging question. Who will pay the hundreds of millions needed to make it happen? They are waiting for an answer.

Roswita Nowak already knows what it’s like to abandon her home; she’s done it three times.

Shortly after 8am on April 2, 2007, the mother of eight was making the short stroll from her home at Taro’s northern end to her work in a government office when she was distracted by an unfamiliar sound. “I looked down [toward the village centre] and could see people running, and then I heard this ‘sssshhhh’, and saw the water rushing. Then there was shouting: ‘Tsunami! Tidal wave!’ Everyone started to panic, running. People were shouting, ‘We have to go, leave everything, we’re going now.’ And for the women, the first thing we thought of was our children.”

While others headed for boats on the shore, Nowak dashed for home - a slightly raised four-room house where she had left six of her kids minutes before. She calmed them best she could, and waited. “I was shaking.”

Soon her husband, Fleming, a police officer, arrived. He said, “The boat is ready, let’s go.” Their 15-year-old son, Stanislaus, picked up his five-year-old sister, Helena, and everyone ran to the beach at the atoll’s north, where a dinghy was waiting. “We got into the boat,” Nowak remembers, “and immediately the tide went out and we just sat there on the dry seafloor and had to wait for the water to come back in, not knowing what it would do.”

They were lucky. The water came back forcefully enough to lift them but not tip them out. So they headed about two kilometres east across rough seas to the Choiseul mainland and scrambled up a hill to a small camp used by a logging company.

The evacuation of Taro was messy. There weren’t enough boats so it took more than two hours of trips back and forth. Some people were dropped off on an exposed coral reef, only for the oscillating sea to return and swamp them up to their chests as they tried to walk to the shore. The town’s people relocated to the jungle logging camp for five days, largely exposed to the elements. Other parts of the country were much less fortunate. The tsunami, triggered by an earthquake about 160 kilometres south, killed 52.

The island has been evacuated twice more since, during heavy seismic activity in a week in April last year. To some extent, this is the risk that comes with life in a low-lying area dissected by geological fault lines. But the advice from scientists and hard-headed officials is that the risk is worsening rapidly.

Satellite data suggests sea levels in the south-west Pacific are rising up to five times faster than the global average - 7.7 millimetres a year in the capital Honiara, to the south, and up to 16.8 millimetres a year in the ocean to the country’s north.....

As always, climate change driven by greenhouse gases is interacting here with natural forces. Separating the two isn’t necessarily straightforward, but scientists say the human hand is already evident.

They cannot say with confidence that tropical cyclones in the area will become more intense due to climate change, but they know that storms are heading further south. When we arrive, the people of Choiseul are counting the cost of tropical cyclone Raquel, which took at least one life and destroyed homes, palm plantations and seaweed crops at the start of July. Along Taro’s shore, recently felled trees lie in the ocean waiting to be cleaned up.

It is, by several months, the latest in the season a cyclone has hit the area - a reflection, meteorologists say, of changing atmospheric patterns and ocean temperatures being the warmest on record.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Population predictions are crap

What I want to say here is mostly 4th grade stuff but vast numbers of people don't seem to get it.

What I want to talk about is the folly of straight line projections.  People who are used to graphs should know immediately what I am going to say but people with more  literary inclinations probably will not.

Perhaps the most hilarious example of the folly concerned is the repeated prediction that we are going to run out of oil soon.  People have been making that prediction ever since oil was discovered and they have always been wrong.  Up until fracking was implemented, Greenies used to make that prediction.  But fracking has mostly silenced them on that issue.  Now they say we will run out of food!

So why has that prediction always been wrong?  Because it assumes that all the influences on the thing concerned will stay the same. In the case of oil, it assumes there will be no more discoveries.  The reasoning goes like this:  "We have reserves of 10,000 barrels of oil and we are using 1,000 barrels each year so therefore we will run out in 10 years".

It's great arithmetic but totally ignorant of almost everything in nature.  Nature is complex.  Things are always changing.  And if there is any predictability at all in nature the trend will be in the form of an ogive or some other curvilinear trend.  In an ogive, things rise for a while and then flatten out.  In statisticians' terms, they "approach an asymptote".

So it should by now be clear why all the current  predictions of future population will be wrong.  I am in fact here and now going to issue a prophecy!  Bold, I know, but it's a pretty safe one. And neither the Book of Daniel nor the Book of Revelation is involved!  So: This is my prophecy:

"In 50 years time, all the current predictions of various national populations will be shown to have been wrong"

The birthrates in various nations at the moment are very low.  So low that the straight-line wise-heads are predicting that the populations of countries like Japan, Italy and Russia will be only half of what they are now.  Why is that prediction foolish?  Because it assumes that birthrates will remain the same.  Yet anybody who remembers the world before the 1960s should know how absurd that is.

Take Italy, one of the doomed populations according to the straight-line wiseheads. Italy was once the land of large families.  Lots of Italian families had an Ottorino (eighth child).  Now, of course, one child is the norm.  So does not a change as drastic as that tell you something?  Does it not tell you that all the influences on the given phenomenon (in this case the birthrate) will NOT remain the same?  It surely should.

Let us be a little more insightful about population than doing silly arithmetic.  What caused the Italian birthrate collapse?  The same thing that has caused a birthrate collapse in most of the developed world:  The contraceptive pill. Children are expensive but up until about 1960 people had no easy way of stopping them coming.  So they kept coming.

OK.  The pill was an unexpected factor that threw out all the straight line "population explosion" projections made in the early  20th century.  Paul Ehrlich take a bow.  So what other influences could come along and ditch all the present predictions?

There is an obvious one: An evolutionary one. All the non-maternal women are currently being removed from the gene pool by reason of the simple fact that they now rarely have children. Women like them will become rarer and rarer. So all the births of the not too distant future will come from maternally-inclined women. And how many children will those women have? As many as they can afford (and then some in some cases). Some wonderful stories about maternal women here and here and here and here and here.

So the birthrates in advanced nations will recover and the  population will start growing again -- albeit off a lower base.

And there are other influences that may have an effect -- even ones that I have not thought of!  France, for instance, has long had pro-natalist government policies and that has propped up the French birthrate.  Similar policies will probably be adopted by other nations.  Russia and Singapore have already stepped up to the plate with policies of that nature.

And here's a way-out one:  It seems to have become fashionable for celebrity women to have children, multiple children in most cases.  You would not think that women who live by their looks would risk  their figures by having children, but they are in fact doing it -- the Kardashians, for instance.  Children now seem to have become a sign of affluence.  They are the ultimate luxury -- even better than big yachts and Gulfstream jets.  And lots of people DO emulate celebrities.  Many women in the near future may start having children because it is fashionable or simply because they want to show off.  One can imagine the conversations:  "I've got three.  How many have you got?"

So who knows what the future holds?

Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Friday, September 18, 2015

Illinois Teacher Sentenced to Probation - Update

Chelsey Wheeler

(Savanna, Illinois) Former West Carroll High School science teacher, Chelsey Wheeler, 26, pleaded guilty to aggravated criminal sexual abuse for having a relationship with a 17-year-old male student.

Wheeler has been sentenced to 4 years probation and must register as a sex offender for life.

* * * * *

Illinois Teacher Accused of Student Sex Assault
[Previous 4/10/14 post]
(Savanna, Illinois) A former science teacher at West Carroll High School, Chelsey Wheeler, resigned her teaching job after being arrested and charged with criminal sexual assault.
Chelsey Wheeler of Lanark, Ill. was released on bond after she was arrested on Monday, April 7, 2014.

Wheeler is accused of having a relationship with a 17-year-old student.

The Savanna Police Department is still investigating the case with help from Carroll County and the Illinois State Police.
Details of the sexual assault are unavailable.

New York Woman Pleads Guilty to Sex with Child

Latasha Mitchell

(Binghamton, New York)
In October 2014, Latasha Mitchell subjected a 7-month-old boy to sexual contact and recorded it on video with her cellphone.

On Thursday, Mitchell, 34, admitted her guilt in Binghamton’s federal courthouse and accepted a plea agreement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office on two felony counts of sexual exploitation of a child, charges that could place her in federal prison for at least 15 years.

Had the case gone to trial, prosecution witnesses, including FBI agents, and evidence would have shown that Mitchell recorded two cellphone videos of the criminal sexual acts against a child who was in her temporary care, Assistant U.S. Attorney Miroslav Lovric said.
Sentencing is scheduled for January 22, 2016.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Ohio Coach Pleads Guilty to Sexual Battery

Chelcie Gullett

(Xenia, Ohio) Former basketball coach at Bethel High School, Chelcie Gullett, 25, has pleaded guilty to sexual battery of a female player.
According to a release from the Xenia Police Divison, after an investigation, police determined that sexual acts between Gullett and the player occurred in Xenia, where Gullett lives.

Police were notified back in May after the victim’s parents reported an incident to the school.
Gullett faces a possible five years in prison.

Florida Woman Accused of Sex with Two Boys

Kimberly Hendrix

(Clearwater, Florida) A 33-year-old local woman, Kimberly Hendrix, has been arrested for engaging in sex with two boys, aged 15 and 16.

Detectives investigated.
Through their investigation it was determined that the boys were invited to a private location for a party where Hendrix provided them alcohol and engaged in sexual activity with the boys who were 15 and 16-years-old at the time.
Hendrix has been charged with lewd and lascivious battery and unlawful sex with a minor.

Kansas Woman Charged with Indecent Liberties with a Child

Stephanie Francine Brannan

(Ottawa, Kansas) A 24-year-old local woman, Stephanie Francine Brannan, has been accused of engaging in sex with a 15-year-old boy.
Brannan was arrested in Forest Park Friday on a Franklin County District Court warrant.[…]

The arrest stems from a July 12 report to the Ottawa Police Department by a woman identifying herself as is the victim’s mother.
Brannan has been charged with aggravated indecent liberties with a child.

How your tweets can betray your politics: Liberals use swear words on Twitter while those on the right discuss religion

This will be no news to conservatives who have had interactions with Leftists.  Abuse is about all they are capable of if you point out anything that undermines any of their claims.  Civil disagreement and rational argument mostly seem to be beyond them.

Like an earlier study, the study below found that profanity is much more common on Leftist social media. The earlier study of the matter found profanity to be TWELVE TIMES more common on Leftist blogs. Profanity is of course proverbially the sign of a weak mind trying to express itself forcibly.

It has to be that way.  Reality is so inimical to Leftist views  that a balanced consideration of all the evidence would make conservatives out of them.  So emotional responses to any undermining of their positions are all that is left to them. They are a sad lot -- ruled by their own hostile emotions

For many users of social media, figuring out their political stance is simple as they broadcast their views for all to see.  However, it seems it is possible to discern someone's politics purely from the language they use on Twitter.

Researchers have found liberals, like supporters of the Democrats in the US, were more likely to use swear words.

They were also more likely to use emotionally charged language and express positive emotions than Conservative and Republican tweeters, but also use language associated with anxiety.

Conservatives were more likely to discuss religion, with 'god' and 'psalm' being among their most popular words.

Dr Matthew Purver, one of the authors of the study at Queen Mary University of London, said: 'Open social media provides a huge amount of data for use in understanding offline behaviour.

'The way people talk and interact on Twitter can provide a more robust and natural source for analysing behaviour than the traditional experiments and surveys.'

The researchers studied tweets sent between 15 and 30 June 2014 by followers of either the Republican or Democrat party Twitter accounts.

As might be expected, there were clear differences in the discussion of politics and topical issues.  Liberals were more likely to discuss international news, frequently mentioning 'Kenya', where 60 people were killed in violent attacks during the time of the study, and 'Delhi' which was also regularly in the news at the time.

However, while Democrats would be expected to mention Barack Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi regularly it was actually Republicans who talked about their opposition most.

Democrats conversely were more likely to talk about former Vice President Dick Cheney.

The study, published in the journal Public Library of Science One, showed Democrats were also more likely to swear, with 'f***' and 's***' in their top ten most used words after common English words were removed.

Democrats were also more likely than conservatives to use words like 'I' and 'me', while Republicans used words like 'we' and 'our'.

Previous studies have suggested liberals have a greater sense of their own uniqueness while conservatives are more likely to emphasis group identify and consensus.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

California Teacher Gets Jail in Sex Case - Update

Laura Lasek

(Marysville, California) Former Marysville teacher Laura Lasek, 27, has been convicted of statutory rape and oral copulation with a 15-year-old boy on multiple occasions.

Lasek was sentenced Monday to serve 180 days in county jail and five years probation.

* * * * *

California Teacher Accused of Sex with Minor
[Previous 2/14/15 post]
(Marysville, California) A 26-year-old teacher at Marysville High School, Laura Lasek, has been accused of engaging in sex with a student.

Lasek faces counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a child 14 or 15, oral copulation with a person under 16, and unlawful sex with a minor.

While a teacher at Thomas E. Mathews Community School, Lasek allegedly engaged in sexual acts with a student who attended the school, according to Sgt. Chris Sachs.

Additional information was unavailable as the investigation is ongoing.

Lasek was booked into custody with bail set at $211,000.

California oilfield wastewater panic ignores first rule of toxicology

So oilfield wastewater sprayed on CA cops contains toxins!  How awful!  What the Greenies don't mention is the first law of toxicology:  The toxicity is in the dose.  We ingest minute amounts of toxins all the time and it does us no harm.  But even plain old drinking water can kill you if you drink too much of it.  Wastewater for crop usage is purified according to official standards and there is no evidence it does any harm.

“You can't find what you don't look for,” UC Berkeley researcher Seth B.C. Shonkoff recently told the LA Times, referring to the chemicals that state regulators don’t know to test for in the recycled wastewater the California oil industry sells for use on crops here in the top agricultural producing state in the US.

Chevron produces more than 10 times as much water as it does oil at its Kern River oil field in California’s Central Valley, for instance — 760,000 barrels of water a day versus 70,000 barrels of oil. Half of that water is treated and sold to the Cawelo Water District in Bakersfield, which mixes it with fresh water and sells it exclusively to farmers.

Nobody knows if that water contains chemicals from fracking or other extreme oil extraction techniques, because the companies aren't required to test for them before selling the water. Nobody knows what those chemicals are, anyway, because companies aren't required to make that information public.

And that’s just a fraction of the lucrative new market in recycled oil field water Chevron is pioneering as the climate-exacerbated drought gripping the American West show no signs of abating any time soon.

According to the LA Times, the company recycles 21 million gallons of produced water every day in California, selling it to farmers who use it on about 45,000 acres of cropland in Kern County, the nation’s “No. 2 crop county” since 2013.

Farmers rely on government regulators to guarantee that the recycled oil water they buy is safe, the Times reports, but given that state regulators don’t even know what those chemicals are, it can't very well be testing for them. But that could all change soon.

The California legislature passed a law in 2013 that establishes a regulatory framework for fracking, acidization and other unconventional well stimulations techniques, including mandatory air quality and groundwater monitoring and public disclosure of all chemicals used. The full regulations go into effect July 1, 2015 (six months before the scientific study and environmental impact study ordered by the law will be completed, but that’s another story).

Last month, state water authorities announced that all recycled oil field water would have to be tested for every chemical copmanies report using in the extraction process, and set a June 15, 2015 deadline for companies to report the results of those tests. Currently, the only tests required by the state are for naturally occurring toxins.

Environmental advocacy group Water Defense has already done its own test of the water Chevron is selling to California farmers, however, and says, “Our findings are appalling: laboratory analysis of irrigation water in the Cawelo Water District found not only oil, but known toxins and potential carcinogens including methylene chloride. Are these chemicals in the food we eat? We need to be investigating our waterways for the full range of contaminants that are going into them.”

David Ansolabehere, general manager of the Cawelo Water District, criticized Water Defense’s methods, per the LA Times, but at the same time announced that his agency and Chevron would voluntarily contract a third party to conduct tests in accordance with the new requirements.

The biggest question that needs to be answered in all this, of course, is whether or not there has been significant contamination of our food supply. At present, it’s not clear whether or not oil contamination in water used on crops could ever actually make its way into an almond or cherry or any other California-grown produce you might ever consume. But it certainly will help when we know what to look for.

Of course, this is just one of many issues the oil industry has with water that needs to be resolved. California oil wells coughed up some 3.1 billion barrels of water along with 200 million barrels of oil in 2014, much of it too salty or chemical-laden to be treated in a cost-effective manner.

Some 831 million barrels of that wastewater was injected into disposal wells last year, even as evidence was coming to light that California regulators had improperly allowed as many as 2,500 injection wells to operate in groundwater aquifers that should have been protected under the federal Safe Drinking Water Act.

In response to the drought — and the fact that California has only one year of water left in its reservoirs — Governor Jerry Brown announced emergency urban water use restrictions earlier this year. Those restrictions were heavily criticized for not including the oil and agricultural industries.

State regulators, meanwhile, gave oil companies another two years to continue injecting wastewater into protected aquifers while they seek the proper exemptions from the Safe Drinking Water Act.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Missouri Woman Accused of Child Endangerment

Brittany Mugrauer

(Kansas City, Missouri) A 24-year-old mother, Brittany Mugrauer, has been accused of child endangerment. Her two young children, 4 and 6, were found living in a wooden shipping crate in an underground cave.
Jackson County detectives were serving a search warrant for an alleged stolen car operation in the caves on the city's east side Thursday when they found the children, alone, in the 8-by-10-foot crate furnished with vehicle bench seats.

Prosecutors say the children were poorly clothed, barefoot and covered in dirt, and the younger one was eating from a cup of dry ramen noodles.
Mugrauer faces two counts of felony child endangerment.

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