Friday, November 6, 2020

The Presidential election still isn’t decided but one thing is for sure, the nation experienced a record voter turnout

One remarkable woman is still making sure her voice is heard after 84 years. May Wesler, of Milton, Pennsylvania, is 107 years old. She made sure to vote this past Tuesday (11/3) and she did so in-person. Her family says she always votes and she cast her first ballot back in 1936. In a news interview, she talked about her life experiences and the importance of family along with having to use her own iPad. She has nine children, 18 grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren and nine great, great-grandchildren. Also impressive is that she drove a car until she was 103. The 107-year-old woman has also recently survived COVID-19. (Philadelphia CBS)


The 14-year-old niece of a Judge of Elections is facing charges after investigators say she stole her aunt’s vehicle with an elections suitcase inside of it

According to Allegheny County, Pennsylvania officials, important election materials were inside that suitcase when the car was taken. The incident delayed the opening of the Pittsburgh 05-05 polling place this morning. Investigators say the vehicle was stolen last Monday (11/2) night in the Hill District and spotted this morning by a Allegheny County sheriff’s deputy in Beltzhoover. The sheriff’s deputy chased the vehicle until five people bailed out, all believed to be juveniles. Four were captured on foot and the fifth is still at large and the suitcase was eventually recovered. “From the information we have now, we believe it was a 14-year-old girl who stole a car and her and friends were riding around in it,” the Allegheny County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy said. “They picked up more friends, ran out of room, and threw the box in an alleyway in McKees Rocks.” The suitcase contained the poll book, the keys need to open the ballot marking device and scanner and other paperwork and materials. It did not contain any ballots. So far, the 14-year-old girl and the 16-year-old who was driving the car have been charged. They face counts of theft and tampering with evidence. (KDKA)


Teen’s first car purchase turns nightmare due to title issues

The excitement of buying that first car turns to stress for a Papillion, Nebraska 18-year-old because every time a police cruiser passes by, he may get pulled over even if he’s driving safely. Intransit stickers from the internet car lot that expired 50 days ago. He tells the officer, “I bought this car from them and they haven’t even signed over my title yet to the DMV.” The dealership says the car seller gave them a clean Nebraska title. But that’s been rejected by local licensing officials who discovered a South Carolina title issued later with a lien on the same car. The teenagers father said, “Yeah we did what are we supposed to do, and they said there’s been some confusion and mix-ups with the title so we’re trying to get a duplicate title reissued.” His parents both work and need their vehicles, so if he needs to go to work or school, he takes a chance driving on an expired in transit that’s seven weeks past due, but knows another traffic stop may be around the next corner. The Police Chief says officers can’t always look the other way on expired in transit and said “That’s a little bit long, seven weeks. And we feel for people in these kinds of positions but that’s one of the reasons we suggest that you don’t complete that bill of sale and take possession of that vehicle until you have a title.” The dealership manager says COVID may be a factor in getting a duplicate title from South Carolina. He says our title clerk is calling there religiously but it’s been a nightmare. A suggestion at the Sarpy County, Nebraska Treasurer’s Office that the teen pays sales tax so he has a receipt if pulled over. The internet car lot manager will offer a free loaner car with dealer plates for the teen to drive until the title issue can be sorted out. His father asked the motor vehicle industry licensing board to investigate what happened. (WOWT)


A man from Idaho has been temporarily banned from Yellowstone National Park after pleading guilty to charges stemming from an August 7 outing, during which he was found cooking chickens in a thermal geyser

The man, who was among a group of 10 visitors, was spotted hiking toward the Shoshone Geyser Basin with the group, who were seen carrying cookware toward the thermal feature. A park ranger responded to find the group in possession of two chickens inside a burlap sack, in a hot spring. Yellowstone’s safety regulations currently prohibit visitors from straying from boardwalks or maintained trails near its thermal features, to prevent guests from injuring themselves or destroying the lifeforms found within the geysers and springs. Food is also not allowed in the thermal areas. After pleading guilty to the charges on September 10, the Idaho man was sentenced to two years’ unsupervised probation, during which time he is not allowed to visit the national park. He was also sentenced to pay two $600 fines. (East Idaho News)


The oldest operating brewery in New Orleans has announced its new name, rechristening itself to promote greater inclusivity and unification

The Dixie Brewing Co. will now be known as Faubourg Brewing Co. to celebrate the diversity of the Big Easy, the beer maker announced. The brewery defined “faubourg” as a French word used interchangeably with “neighborhood” in the Crescent City. The proactive renaming of Dixie Brewing and all related products was first announced in June by company owner Gayle Benson, who also owns the New Orleans Saints of the NFL, and New Orleans Pelicans of the NBA. At the time, Benson said the brand was dropping the term Dixie in response to “critical conversations about racism and systemic social issues,” after some critics denounced the term as racially insensitive. The Brewery manager said the company has received “decidedly positive” feedback from customers, wholesalers and grocery stores since announcing the news. The brewery received over 5,400 suggestions after inviting the public to pitch new names for the beer brand, and Birch said the intuitive entrants who submitted “Faubourg” will be invited to a VIP tour of the brewery. As the beer maker transitions to its new marketing, fans can expect to see Faubourg booze on shelves and on tap in early 2021. (Fox News)


Earth’s most arid desert may hold a key to finding life on Mars

Diverse microbes discovered in the clay-rich, shallow soil layers in Chile’s dry Atacama Desert suggest that similar deposits below the Martian surface may contain microorganisms, which could be easily found by future rover missions or landing craft. Led by Cornell University and Spain’s Centro de Astrobiología, scientists now offer a planetary primer to identifying microbial markers on shallow rover digs in Martian clay. In that dry environment at Atacama, the scientists found layers of wet clay about a foot below the surface.  Researchers say that clays are inhabited by microorganisms, suggesting that something similar may have occurred billions of years ago,or it still may be occurring, on Mars. If microbes existed on Mars in the past, their biomarkers likely would be preserved there. The red planet will see rovers cruising across the surface there in the next few years. NASA’s rover Perseverance will land on Mars in February 2021; Europe’s Rosalind Franklin rover will arrive in 2023. Both of those missions will seek microbial biomarkers in the clay below the planet’s surface. In the Yungay region of the Atacama desert, the scientists found the clay layer, a previously unreported habitat for microbial life, is inhabited by at least 30 salt-loving microbial species of metabolically active bacteria and archaea (single-cell organisms). The researchers’ Atacama discovery reinforces the notion that early Mars may have had a similar subsurface with protected habitable niches, particularly during the first billion years of its history. (SciTech Daily)


Utah votes to make hunting and fishing constitutional right

Utah residents voted to make hunting and fishing a constitutional right in the Beehive State on Election Day. Amendment E to the state constitution was passed last Tuesday (11/3), declaring hunting and fishing as the preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife in Utah. With about 74% of Utah voters favoring the amendment, the right to hunt and fish is now protected. The lawmakers who proposed the change said it will ensure protection for hunting and fishing in the future, even if public sentiment turns against the outdoor sports. Amendment E does not make the rights to the outdoor sports absolute, as state laws and policies would still prohibit, for example, a convicted poacher from getting a hunting license. Utah joins 22 other states with constitutional provisions for the right to hunt and fish. (Fox 13


Every Bentley will be totally electric by 2030

By 2030, the century-old British motor company will only produce batter-powered cars, Bentley CEO Adrian Hallmark said Thursday. What’s more, by 2026 all Bentley vehicles will be either plug-in hybrids or battery-powered. “We will not be building engines in less than a decade,” as spokesperson said at the livestreamed event at Bentley’s England headquarters. Already, Bentley plans to launch two hybrid cars for 2021. It’s not clear on what Bentley’s first all-electric vehicle would look like. But since all its models will be electrified by 2030, the first Bentley EV could simply be a modified version of one of its existing internal combustion engine cars. One of the Bentley execs on the call noted 55 percent of customers recently surveyed said they’d want to buy an electric Bentley in the next five years. The spokesperson emphasized that the company was committed “not to just make electric cars, sustainable cars. We’re going to make Bentleys.” That likely means a steep price tag. The cheapest Bentley currently is over $200,000. Sure makes that $35,000 Tesla Model 3 look like a bargain. (Road and Track)


“How to roll a joint” starts trending in New Jersey after state votes to legalize marijuana

Voters in New Jersey just passed legislation the authorize the legal use of recreational use of marijuana and now it seems some people are getting ready to partake in the once-illegal past time based on a unique spike of Google searches. There is nearly a 3,000% jump in the search term “how to roll a joint” on Tuesday (11/3) evening as Garden State residents saw the ballot measure to legally smoke, grow and sell marijuana pass. In fact, three of the top five Google searches in New Jersey as of Wednesday (11/4) morning all relate to the legalization of marijuana vote for the state – the other two are election results for the presidential race. Marijuana for recreational use is already legal in 11 states including California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Nevada, Michigan, Colorado, Illinois, Vermont, Massachusetts and Maine. Arizona, Montana and South Dakota also voted to legalize recreational marijuana in the 2020 election along with New Jersey. (KSAT)


Woman arrested with stolen U-Haul, charges filed

Altoon, Pennsylvania Police report that 37-year-old woman was arrested and charged after the owner of a U-Haul called to file a report for a stolen van. The woman had rented the van on September 21, 2020, and paid a $90 deposit. She reportedly failed to return the van on September 23 and allegedly changed her phone number and moved. U-Haul was unable to contact her at this point. They called police on the 41st day to file a report. The van was found when they contacted a family member and saw the van pull in behind the house and park. She was taken into custody. The victim assessed the mileage and damage resulting the amount owed totaled $4,000 while the damage to the roof of the van would be assessed at a later date. The woman is facing charges of theft of a motor vehicle and theft of services. (WTAJ)


Netflix is apparently fighting controversy about a film on its platform by issuing copyright takedown requests against tweets that include negative commentary about the movie

Netflix has sent dozens of takedown requests to Twitter targeting specific posts that criticize the movie Cuties (Mignonnes), a French film released in the United States on Netflix in September. While the tweets are still live (except where the original posters deleted them), the videos attached to the post now display messages reading, “This media has been disabled in response to a report by the copyright owner.” Cuties is a coming-of-age drama about a Black girl in France on the cusp of adolescence. She rebels against her immigrant parents’ traditional culture, in which women remain quietly covered up at home, by going overboard in the opposite direction—taking to dance and social media to express a sexuality she is too young to understand the implications of and too new to Western culture to know how to frame it all. Doucouré won a directing award for the film at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival in January. Detractors took a look at the poster, which depicted a troupe of 11-year-old dancers in suggestive poses, and decried it as only a half-step away from child pornography. Republican politicians joined the fray, and a grand jury in Tyler County, Texas returned an indictment against Netflix and its CEO Reed Hastings on September 23, accusing them of “promotion of lewd visual material depicting a child.” Netflix executives repeatedly disputed those claims. “Cuties is a social commentary against the sexualization of young children,” Netflix said after the indictment. “This charge is without merit and we stand by the film.” (Torrent Freak)


Rare strain of swine flu reported in human in Canada

A rare strain of swine flu was reported in a human in the Canadian province of Alberta, health officials there announced this week. A confirmed case of Influenza A (H1N2)v, a rare H1N2 swine flu variant, was reported in a central Alberta resident in mid-October after he or she “sought medical care with influenza-like symptoms.” The patient experienced mild symptoms, was tested and then quickly recovered. There is no evidence at this time that the virus has spread further,” according to Alberta’s chief medical officer of health along with the chief provincial veterinarian in a joint statement. That said, health officials and those with the Alberta Agriculture and Forestry are now investigating the source of the virus and to verify that no spread occurred. H1N2 influenza is “known to occur in swine herds around the world,” according to the Alberta government website. It is an infectious respiratory disease of pigs that’s caused by type A influenza viruses and is not a foodborne illness associated with eating pork. (Alberta)


Making Biodiesel From Dirty Old Cooking Oil Just Got Way Easier

Researchers have developed a powerful, low-cost method for recycling used cooking oil and agricultural waste into biodiesel, and turning food scraps and plastic rubbish into high-value products. The method harnesses a new type of ultra-efficient catalyst that can make low-carbon biodiesel and other valuable complex molecules out of diverse, impure raw materials. Waste cooking oil currently has to go through an energy-intensive cleaning process to be used in biodiesel, because commercial production methods can only handle pure feedstocks with 1-2% contaminants. The new catalyst is so tough it can make biodiesel from low-grade ingredients, known as feedstock, containing up to 50% contaminants. It is so efficient it could double the productivity of manufacturing processes for transforming rubbish like food scraps, microplastics, and old tires into high-value chemical precursors used to make anything from medicines and fertilizers to biodegradable packaging. The catalyst design is reported in a new study from an international collaboration led by RMIT University. (


Friday Gets Fried With:

  • Football Jersey Friday (First Friday In November)
  • Fountain Pen Day (First Friday In November)
  • Love Your Lawyer Day (First Friday In November)
  • Medical Science Liaison Awareness & Appreciation Day (First Friday In November)
  • Nachos Day
  • Saxophone Day

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