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Category: Politics
Taiwanese Political Fights
Posted by The Curator on Wed May 23, 2007
Taiwanese politics can get quite violent at times. According to a recent Reuters article: In January, a brawl involving about 50 MPs who wanted to stop parliament speaker Wang Jin-pyng from accessing his podium lasted for four hours. Shoes were thrown at the speaker, a microphone was ripped out and thrown across the chambers. MPs shoved and pulled one another's ties. Wang never made it to the podium. Some of the brawling MPs turned to reporters and cameramen, yelling slogans to them and brandishing signs. In 2005 one legislator needed stitches after he was struck by a mobile phone.…
Categories: Politics Comments (2)
Quick Links: Fake Cyber Romance Leads to Death, etc.
Posted by Boo on Wed Jan 24, 2007
Fake Cyber Romance Leads to Death 22-year-old Brian Barrett was shot to death by his 47-year-old co-worker, Thomas Montgomery, who was jealous of his internet relationship with the young woman that Montgomery had been having a cyber fling with. What neither of them knew was that the woman involved was not 18, as she said, but a 40-something mother who was using her daughter’s identity. CNN Debunks Obama Report CNN have refuted Insight magazine’s claims that Democratic Sen. Barack Obama was raised in a radical Muslim school. Protesters for Hire For around €150…
The Great Belgian Breakup Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Sat Dec 16, 2006
If I were going to draw up a list of the top ten hoaxes of 2006 (which I'm not because I don't have enough time), the Great Belgian Breakup Hoax would definitely have to be included in the list, sneaking in right before the end of the year. As has been widely reported, on Wednesday many people were briefly led to believe that Belgium had ceased to exist. An AP story summarized what happened: Suddenly and shockingly, Belgium came to an end. State television broke into regular programming late Wednesday with an urgent bulletin: The Dutch-speaking half of the country had declared…
Categories: Places, Politics Comments (29)
Quick Links: Liberated Gnomes, Robocalls, etc.
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 07, 2006
Gnome Liberation Front Strikes Again On Nov. 1 79 garden gnomes were liberated by the Garden Gnome Liberation Front in France. The gnomes were later found along the bank of a stream "in some underbrush with a banner that read, 'gnome mistreated, gnome liberated.'" Fake Priests in Japan The BBC has an article about the growing popularity of using fake priests at Japanese weddings: "The fake Western priests are employed at Western-style weddings to give a performance and add to the atmosphere. These are not legal ceremonies - the couples also have to make a trip to the local registrar." Apparently it's becoming quite a big business. I…
Mission Accomplished Vanishes
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 07, 2006
Remember George Bush's Mission Accomplished speech from May 2003 on the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln? The one in which he announced the end of major combat operations in Iraq. I wrote about it in Hippo Eats Dwarf as an example of Political Theater, or a "Potemkin Photo Op": a stage-managed event, created solely for media consumption, that offers a misleading picture of reality. Now it has also become an example of historical revisionism. If you check out the video of the event on the White House's website, you'll notice something strange. The Mission Accomplished banner has vanished from it. Apparently the White House has now embraced the historical policy of the Soviet government,…
Categories: History, Military, Politics Comments (19)
Quick Links: Bull on Roof, etc.
Posted by Boo on Tue Oct 24, 2006
Bull on Roof Chumuckla Elementary School found a lifesize fibreglass bull on the roof on Monday. The bull belongs to a local ranch owner, and is worth more than $1000. £1/4M Compass is £50 Fake A compass, said to have been used by Lawrence of Arabia in his adventures and sold for £254,000 at Christie's auction house along with a watch and cigarette case, could be worth no more than £50. Kaczynski stands in for Kaczynski Polish President Lech Kaczynski has stepped…
Al Gore’s Penguin Army
Posted by The Curator on Mon Aug 07, 2006
A video posted on YouTube, supposedly created by a 29-year-old guy from California calling himself Toutsmith, showing a caricature of Al Gore boring a group of penguins by lecturing them about global warming, has been revealed to be a creation of lobbying firm DCI Group, one of whose clients is Exxon Mobil Corp. The fraud was exposed, surprisingly, by the Wall Street Journal. It's not clear to me exactly how they did it, since I haven't been able to access their article, but from what I can piece together they sent the creator of the video an email,…
Categories: Photos/Videos, Politics Comments (7)
The Town Representative Vanishes
Posted by The Curator on Mon Jul 31, 2006
Status: Weird news The picture on the left shows the former group photo of Cary, North Carolina's town council. Then representative Michael Joyce resigned. Instead of taking a new group photo, the city simply deleted Joyce from the photo. The new photo is on the right (and you can also check out the photo on the town's website). There's nothing wrong with this. I suppose it was easier to do than getting everyone together for another photo. Still, it seems a bit like something out of The Commissar Vanishes. At least he was "disappeared" from the photo only after he resigned. It would be kind of creepy to notice yourself vanishing from official…
Categories: Photos/Videos, Politics Comments (9)
Ann Coulter’s Hands
Posted by The Curator on Sun Jul 09, 2006
Status: Real I don't like to make fun of people's appearances (doing so disturbs my soft, liberal sensibilities), but when I saw this picture of Ann Coulter I thought that it was either photoshopped, or she had the strangest looking hand I've ever seen in my life. In fact, I would hesitate to even use the words 'hand' to describe that thing at the end of her arm. Instead, the phrase 'raptor claw' seems like it might be more appropriate. The thing is almost as long as her forearm! But a quick check on anncoulter.com (which, I assume, is her website) reveals that…
Categories: Photos/Videos, Politics Comments (39)
Candidate Accused of Having Faked His Death
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jun 15, 2006
Status: Strange News I note in Hippo Eats Dwarf that if you fake your death, you need to remain dead, which means staying under the radar. Ronald Wayne Blankenship hasn't followed that advice. Instead, after allegedly faking his death backin 1990, he's now decided to run for sheriff in Jefferson County... which is a good way to bring himself to the attention of the police who now want him to come in and have his fingerprints checked. Blankenship, meanwhile, is maintaining his innocence, insisting that he's not the same Blankenship who once faked his death:Ronald Wayne Blankenship,…
Categories: Death, Politics Comments (11)
BushFish
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jun 01, 2006
Status: Undetermined Do you believe God belongs in government? Do you believe President Bush is doing The Lord's Work? If so, then step up and buy a BushFish car magnet. There's been speculation that this is some kind of parody, along the lines of BushIsLord.com. It does seem a little over the top. But I'm guessing that the creator of these things doesn't care whether people interpret them as a parody, or as a serious statement, as long as they buy plenty of them. (And yes, as far as I can tell, purchases really can be made via the site... though I…
Categories: Politics, Religion Comments (16)
Vote For Padre Pio
Posted by The Curator on Wed May 10, 2006
Status: Joke ballot Reuters reports on a case of a dead guy who was temporarily in the running for Italy's president: With no hope of immediately electing a president, lawmakers have been throwing away votes for the past two days while party leaders negotiate a consensus candidate. A secret ballot has allowed them to get creative. For one elector, the political deadlock offered a rare chance to vote for Padre Pio, a 20th century mystic monk who had the stigmata -- bleeding wounds in the hands and feet similar to those of Christ -- and was…
Categories: Death, Politics Comments (5)
Tagging Air Force One
Posted by The Curator on Tue Apr 18, 2006
Status: Fake A video on stillfree.com shows a guy (Mark Ecko) spraying graffiti on Air Force One. This involves him avoiding armed guards, climbing over fences, and then sprinting across the tarmac to write "Still Free" on the plane's engine. The video is well done, but fake. As a disclaimer on the site reads: "You, the viewer of the preceeding are hereby advised that the video does not depict a real event. It is intended for the sole, limited and express purpose of entertainment and to induce you, the viewer of the video, to think critically about freedom of expression and speech…
Categories: Photos/Videos, Politics Comments (27)
Dead Man Runs For New Orleans Mayor
Posted by The Curator on Sun Apr 09, 2006
Status: Joke campaign Twenty-five people are campaigning to be mayor of New Orleans. One of them is legendary rhythm-and-blues musician Ernie K-Doe. His wife insists that he deserves to be mayor because "He gets the job done. The guy has soul." He also happens to be dead, which, I suppose, makes him perfect for the job (resistant to corruption-- especially if he was embalmed). Unfortunately he's not actually on the ballot, so his supporters will have to stage a write-in campaign. Though he could be a beneficiary of ghost voting, a practice not unknown down there in Louisiana. (Thanks, Big Gary)
Categories: Death, Politics Comments (0)
Massage Milk Censored
Posted by The Curator on Fri Mar 10, 2006
Status: Apparently a hoax Here's news of a hoax from China. (There seems to be more of them coming from there lately.) Massage Milk (great name!) is one of the most popular blogs in China. It was featured in a Newsweek article last month about Chinese bloggers. But a few days ago its site went blank, and the assumption was that it had been forced offline by the Chinese government. At least, this is what news organizations such as the BBC assumed. Turns out everyone was wrong. The disappearing-blog-act was just a hoax. Wang Xiaofeng, the author of Massage Milk, faxed a statement to the Interfax news agency explaining that: …
Categories: Politics, Websites Comments (15)
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