Thursday, July 8, 2021

$10,000 Utah hidden treasure found

The search for $10,000 in cash hidden away in the mountains of Utah is over. Last month, Maxim and Cline launched the second-annual Utah Treasure Hunt and just 17 days later, the treasure was found. A 33-year-old man, from Draper, Utah claims that he found the buried chest filled with $10,000 cash, a 10-ounce silver coin, and other items at a place called Heughs Canyon Trail, at the mouth of Big Cottonwood Canyon in Utah. He and his wife had been looking for the treasure and came close to where he thought it would be, but stopped short for the night. “I woke up yesterday morning and I just had a feeling like it’s right there, it’s got to be right there,” he said. “So I just got up and went out, kind of retraced our footsteps and went a little higher and I was standing on top of it in a few hours. It was crazy.” He said when he found the chest, which was buried under a dead tree, he was shocked. Even now, he said it hasn’t sunk in that he won. He plans to use the $10,000 cash to pay off some debts and even take his three daughters to Disneyland. (Fox News)


A new dinosaur fossil has been found in the state of Oregon

Excavators discovered a fossilized dinosaur vertebra and they believe it is roughly 103 million years old. The remarkable find reportedly took place on June 24 and came from a fossil dig that’s been sponsored by the University of Oregon. Researchers found the vertebra on soil that is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), an environmental agency under the U.S. Department of the Interior. Prior to the dig, the University of Oregon’s Professor of Earth Sciences Greg Retallack and a team of paleontological researchers found a dinosaur toe bone in 2015. (The Times-Journal)


Shorter working week trials an ‘overwhelming success’ in Iceland

Trials of a shorter working week in Iceland have been hailed as an “overwhelming success” by researchers. Public sector employees taking part in two large trials between 2015 and 2019 worked 35-36 hours per week, with no reduction in pay. Many participants had previously worked 40 hours a week. The trials run by Reykjavík City Council and the national government saw worker wellbeing “dramatically” increase across a range of indicators, from perceived stress and burnout, to health and work-life balance, according to researchers from think tank Autonomy and research organization the Association for Sustainable Democracy (Alda). The trials involved 2,500 people, more than 1% of Iceland’s working population, and were aimed at maintaining or increasing productivity while improving work-life balance. Researchers found that productivity and services stayed the same or improved across the majority of workplaces. (CNN)


Rats empty 12 wine bottles in Tamil Nadu liquor store

The incident came to light after TASMAC employees opened the shop at Kadampuzha on Monday, which had been kept closed for a long time due to the lockdown. They found the caps of the 12 quarter liquor bottles open, with bite marks of rats and wine in them emptied, official sources said. On being informed, the supervisor and senior TASMAC officials carried out an investigation, which revealed the presence of rats inside the shop, they said. The cost of the bottles is said to be around $20.05 in US currency, they said. (India Today)



Furious locals complain village’s peace and quiet shattered by ‘screaming and moaning’ from swingers festival

Furious locals complained that their village’s peace and quiet was shattered by “screaming and moaning” from a swingers festival recently. Four-hundred swingers took part in a four-day sex-fest that included a mobile dungeon and bondage demos. The happy campers descended on fields near Grantham, Lincolnshire, to take part in Swingathon, which was almost cancelled last week after organisers claimed it was “too much hassle”. Hot tubs, a naked singer, fetish demos and a Miss and Mr Swingathon 2021 competition was on offer for kinky guests for a $275.62 ticket. Couples could also enjoy adult bouncy castles, a mobile dungeon, a wet t-shirt competitions, and sleep in a four person yurt – all said to be “Covid compliant.” According to the Swingathon website, there is also a BDSM demo, a sweet bar, outdoor cinema, and clay pigeon shooting. (The Sun)


Once automated, jobs don’t turn back

The automation boom accelerated by the pandemic has been replacing service-industry workers with robots, as restaurants, hotels and retailers adopted new technologies to keep operations running. Some fast-food chains, for instance, invested in voice recognition systems to take drive-through orders when they couldn’t find workers. Although the trend toward automation has increased productivity and lowered costs, economists warn the recent wave could eliminate jobs and lessen workers’ bargaining power for the long-term, especially as employers continue to struggle with hiring. Robots are coming to college campuses this fall, as Grubhub plans to use new technology to help with food delivery. (The New York Times)


Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources receives over 1,400 reports of sick, dying birds

Wildlife officials are still trying to figure out what is causing hundreds of birds to be sick or dying in Virginia and other states. Between May 23 and June 30, the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources said it has taken over 1,400 reports of sick or dying birds. Of the reported cases, about 450 were described as having eye issues and/or neurological signs. The counties where the cases have been reported so far include Alexandria, Arlington, Clarke, Fairfax, Falls Church, Fauquier, Frederick, Loudoun, Manassas, Prince William, Shenandoah, Warren and Winchester. On a larger scale, cases of sick or dying birds first started being reported in late May in Washington D.C., Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Kentucky. DWR said additional reports have also come in from Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Indiana. Multiple laboratories are working to determine what is causing the illness and death. Within the birds tested, the following infectious agents have not been found: Salmonella and Chlamydia (bacterial pathogens); avian influenza virus, West Nile virus and other flaviviruses, Newcastle disease virus and other paramyxoviruses, herpesviruses and poxviruses; and Trichomonas parasites. Additional microbiology, virology, parasitology and toxicology diagnostic testing are ongoing. Right now, no human health, domestic livestock or poultry issued have been reported. (WHSV)


Judge jails editor over reporter’s use of recorder in court

A North Carolina Superior Court judge put a small-town newspaper editor behind bars last month after one of his reporters used an audio recorder for note-taking purposes at a murder trial, a punishment the paper and media rights groups consider excessive. The Judge sentenced the news editor of the Richmond County Daily Journal, to five days in jail before having the editor hauled off to jail, but was released the next day while still facing the possibility of more time in lockup. The paper’s publisher acknowledged that his reporter shouldn’t have had the recorder in court because it was not allowed, but criticized the judge’s move to imprison an editor for a minor infraction committed by a colleague. Superior Court rules allow electronic media and still photography coverage of public judicial proceedings, but grant judges the authority to prohibit the technology. (Associated Press)


One woman’s battle to prove she isn’t dead

Five years ago, a French woman was declared dead by a French court. The trouble began in 2016 when her passport application was declined. Several weeks later, at a doctor’s appointment, she and her Doctor were perplexed when his computer spat out her carte vitale, the green card that gives access to the French public health system, so they thought it to a technical blip. She assumed that was also the reason her pharmacy suggested she would have to pay in full for her diabetes drugs. It seemed like a series of annoying coincidences; the kind of red tape many in France find themselves tangled up in at one time or another in a country notorious for bureaucracy. It was irritating but would, she assumed, eventually be resolved. When she received her bank statement and discovered her business account had been plunged into the red, even though she had paid in dozens of checks, she started to become seriously concerned. Over the next few months, she continued to notice odd, annoying things happening, but assumed it was nothing more than a glitch in a computer somewhere. She carried on working and driving, and applied again for her passport, submitting even more documents. Eventually, her passport application was returned, marked “REFUSED” with no explanation. A month later, two officers turned up at the woman’s home with a recorded delivery letter addressed to her. The letter informed her that a lawyer in a court case relating to her cleaning business had told the court that she had died in February 2016. Somehow, this unverified claim was allowed to go unchecked and unchallenged. Since then, the woman has spent more than three and a half years engaged in an existential battle to prove to the French authorities what remains obvious to all that she is very much alive. (The Guardian)


How children are spoofing Covid-19 tests with soft drinks

Some children have found a devious method to get out of school – using cola to create false positive Covid tests. The latest trick is to fake a positive Covid-19 lateral flow test (LFT) using soft drinks. If you open up an LFT device, you’ll find a strip of paper-like material, called nitrocellulose, and a small red pad, hidden under the plastic casing below the T-line. Absorbed on the red pad are antibodies that bind to the Covid-19 virus. They are also attached to gold nanoparticles (tiny particles of gold actually appear red), which allow us to see where the antibodies are on the device. When you do a test, you mix your sample with a liquid buffer solution, ensuring the sample stays at an optimum pH, before dripping it on the strip. The fluid wicks up the nitrocellulose strip and picks up the gold and antibodies. The latter also bind to the virus, if present. Further up the strip, next to the T (for test), are more antibodies that bind the virus. But these antibodies are not free to move – they are stuck to the nitrocellulose. As the red smear of gold-labelled antibodies pass this second set of antibodies, these also grab hold of the virus. The virus is then bound to both sets of antibodies, leaving everything, including the gold, immobilised on a line next to the T on the device, indicating a positive test. Gold antibodies that haven’t bound to the virus carry on up the strip where they meet a third set of antibodies, not designed to pick up Covid-19, stuck at the C (for control) line. These trap the remaining gold particles, without having to do so via the virus. This final line is used to indicate the test has worked. (BBC)



Corrections officer convicted in California for ‘Depraved’ sex with a detainee in front of other inmates

A 27-year-old female California correctional officer was send on to prison for having sex with an inmate while on the job – and in front of other prisoners. She was apprehended after the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office got information regarding her contact with a prisoner who was captured with a smartphone behind bars in 2019. Fresno’s Assistant Sheriff told the judge that her behavior was “something only a depraved mind could come up with.” She was hired in 2016 and quit shortly after the matter was revealed by authorities. She was accused of cutting a hole in her uniform to facilitate personal interactions with the convict, which they allegedly had in front of 11 other inmates. The Assistant Sheriff said that “She has shown no remorse.” “She calls and has sexually explicit chats with the inmate in question on a regular basis, bragging about the offenses she committed.” The woman was sentenced to 210 days in prison and two years probation for felony charges of sexual behavior by a detention facility staff with a consenting confined adult and possession of narcotics or an alcoholic beverage in a jail institution. (Folks Paper)


More police K9s forced into retirement following legalization of recreational marijuana

Following the legalization of marijuana in New Mexico, more law enforcement agencies across the state are retiring their drug-sniffing dogs. The Tucumcari, New Mexico Police Department announced on Facebook it’s retiring its dog, Aries. “With the legalization of recreational marijuana, K9 Aries is unable to continue his function as a narcotics detection dog,” the department stated in the post. They claim the problem is that a dog will indicate “a drug” is present, but can’t communicate “which drug.” A handler can’t determine if the dog found meth, heroin or a legal amount of marijuana. Now marijuana is legal, if the dog alerts on it, and we got a search warrant, we’d be violating somebody’s rights. So that meant the easiest, simplest thing was to just stop using those dogs for that purpose. New Mexico State Police is also planning to retire all nine of its dogs that were trained to detect marijuana. One fiscal impact report estimates that replacing all nine dogs at state police would cost about $194,000. (KKOB)


Former President Donald Trump files lawsuit against Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Former President Donald Trump has filed suit against three of the country’s biggest tech companies, claiming he and other conservatives have been wrongfully censored. Trump announced the action against Facebook, Twitter and Google’s YouTube, along with the companies’ CEOs, at a press conference in New Jersey yesterday (7/7). He was joined by other plaintiffs in the suits, which were filed in federal court in Miami. Under Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act, social media platforms are allowed to moderate their services by removing posts that, for instance, are obscene or violate the services’ own standards, so long as they are acting in “good faith.” The law also generally exempts internet companies from liability for the material that users post. Former President Trump and other politicians have long argued that Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms have abused that protection and should lose their immunity or at least have to earn it by satisfying requirements set by the government. Former President Trump was suspended from Twitter, Facebook and YouTube after his followers stormed the Capitol building on January 6th. The companies cited concerns that he would incite further violence. (Orlando Sentinel)


Thursday Is All “Diamonds Hands” With:

  • Chocolate with Almonds Day
  • Coca Cola Day
  • Fast of Tammuz (at Sundown)
  • Math 2.0 Day (Founding Day)
  • Freezer Pop Day
  • Video Game Day
  • SCUD Day (Savor the Comic, Unplug the Drama)
  • World Body Painting Day


Historical Events

  • 1283 – War of the Sicilian Vespers: the naval Battle of Malta between the Aragonese and the Neapolitan fleets is fought.
  • 1709 – Great Northern War: Battle of Poltava – Peter I of Russia defeats Charles XII of Sweden at Poltava thus effectively ending Sweden’s role as a major power in Europe.
  • 1716 – Great Northern War: the naval Battle of Dynekilen takes place.
  • 1822 – Chippewas turn over a huge tract of land in Ontario to the United Kingdom.
  • 1874 – The Mounties begin their March West.
  • 1892 – St. John’s, Newfoundland is devastated in the Great Fire of 1892.
  • 1948 – The United States Air Force accepts its first female recruits into a program called Women in the Air Force (WAF).
  • 1966 – King Mwambutsa IV Bangiriceng of Burundi is deposed by his son Prince Charles Ndizi.
  • 1994 – Kim Jong-il begins to assume supreme leadership of North Korea upon the death of his father, Kim Il-sung.
  • 2011 – Space Shuttle Atlantis is launched in the final mission of the U.S. Space Shuttle program.