Saturday, January 04, 2014

January 4, 2014

“If they keep takin’ ‘em, I’ll keep makin’ ‘em” / Full Disclosure: I have the runs / “OK . . Clear! . . (“Ahhhh!”) / 84k?  Ehh, I guess Hep-C's not so bad

Update:  Fuhrer-wannabe Heath Campbell, 40, had another Aryan urchin (his 9th, by 5 mommas), and as little Eva Braun Campbell was emerging, Pennsylvania child welfare officials snatched her up.  New York Daily News   ///   NOTW .M098 (2-22-2009)   ///   NOTW .M246 (12-25-2011)   
TMI:  Newly-elected corruption-fighting minister Arvind Kejriwal of New Delhi, “true to [his] vow of transparency,” called in sick the first day--explaining that he had diarrhea.   Agence France-Presse via South China Morning Post

Of Course:  A handcuffed Douglas Lydic, 29, who fled a police cruiser in Commodore, Pa., was charged with escape, plus, of course, theft of handcuffs.   Associated Press via

Too Clever By Half:  Cops were called on two Los Angeles home-invaders, who were still on the scene when police arrived outside.  The perps (who’ve seen the same movies you’ve seen) persuaded the victim-residents to tie them up, too, so that when cops entered, they’d think the perps were actually victims.  Victims said, Sure.  Perps appeared shocked that as soon as the cops walked through the door, the victims ratted them out (and by then of course the perps could not take off because . . they were tied up).   Los Angeles Times

It’s supposed to be a genuine South African video of indigenous Venda people doing “traditional” bare-knuckle “Musangwe” fighting.  One guy knocks out another guy, who is revived by the traditional first-aid of . . genital massage.

Welshman Leon Humphreys, 60, spurning a plea on his traffic ticket, demanded his right to fistfight for his freedom (“trial by combat”) under ancient #English law.  (Denied.)  Daily Telegraph (London)

Can’t Possibly Be True:  C’mon.  Even Homeland Security wouldn’t . . ..  Did they really confiscate and destroy 13 handmade wood flutes that Canadian-American virtuoso Boujemaa Razgui brought in through Logan Airport?  (Officials:  Ya can’t bring “agriculture” in without special permission.)  Boston Globe

False Choice (I):  “Federalism” gives states the opportunity to serve their specific populations and the 50 states to “experiment” with a variety of approaches to problems; it is a feature of our gov’t, not a bug.  Ummm . . well, in the rush for variety, states may write laws that serve as gigantic loopholes for federal regulation that Congress intended to apply nationwide, like “dynasty trusts” in South Dakota and 3 other states, attracting business but frustrating federal estate law by allowing billionaires to set up their children’s children’s children in a style to which they’ll someday become accustomed.

False Choice (II):  Big Pharma needs to recoup its super-enormous research and testing costs for life-saving drugs, and therefore it’s fair that they charge whatever super-enormous price they come up with; to deny them that is to shut down life-saving-drug research.  Ummmm . . well, just because the company says it needs X retail price (never dare showing the bookkeeping, of course) doesn’t mean all the incentives wouldn’t remain in place even if the price were somewhat, or a lot, lower than X.   Say hello to Sovaldi, which can actually cure deadly Hep-C for #2m people at a straight cost of about $250 per but for which Gilead Sciences figures it deserves $84,000 each (with discounts for some 3rd-worlders among the 2m).  (Reporter: Mightn’t you cut the price once you’ve recouped your costs?  Gilead official: “That’s very unlikely we would do that.  [However] I appreciate the thought.”)  NPR

Newsrangers:  Craig Cryer and Kent Harris, and the News of the Weird Board of Editorial Advisors.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Note to Readers:

News of the Weird Pro Edition has been on hiatus for a while now, but Chuck Shepherd's News of the Weird blog appears several days a week on, along with posts from science writer Alex Boese's (he, the proprietor of Museum of Hoaxes) and sci-fi's hard-core Paul Di Filippo.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Dear Weirdo,

I regret to announce that I'm going on semi-Leave of Absence.  I have modest health problems that are limiting my productivity.  There may come a time in the near future when I regain my full energy.  There may even come a time in the more-near future when I can contribute once again to my blogs (and thus to the Google Group mailing list that is producing the message you're now reading).  It's just that right now, I can't.

The weekly syndicated News of the Weird newspaper column (which some of you read by being on the Google Group newsoftheweird) will continue on schedule.  In fact, having to struggle so hard now on that column is the main reason I am insecure about my ability to produce other work.

Please resist the urge to send me condolences.  I'm definitely not malingering, but on the other hand, I'm not so bad off that I need to read condolences.  It's just a Leave of Absence.

If you are now so disappointed that you need to say good-bye to this Group, please click the Unsubscribe link at the bottom of this message.  Otherwise, stay put, and you'll hear from me from time to time (at least, from time to time; perhaps more frequently).

Thankya, thankyavermuch.
Chuck Shepherd               
July 22, 2012

Monday, July 09, 2012

News of the Weird 2.0
Two or Three Times a Week, Since May 21, 2012

Underreported News, Hand-Picked and Lightly Seasoned by Chuck Shepherd
July 9, 2012
(datelines from June 10 or later) (links correct as of July 9)
© 2012 by Chuck Shepherd.  All rights reserved.

Editor's Note

Miss me yet?  I'm fine, thank you, but I now have to read almost everything three times (versus two before that, provoked by my advancing age), and I must reserve my most brilliant spells for my weekly News of the Weird column, which still provides a bit of income.  So, I'm back to merely guiding you upon a cite-seeing tour, at least for a while longer.

★ ★ ★ ★!

Somewhere:  "Nick" and "Ethan" have formed Virtuous Pedophiles, "many" of whom pose no danger to kids, they say.  Just admire 'em at a distance, like art gallery patrons.  Sez Ethan:  "Almost any group in the world can hold a convention, look out on a sea of faces, and say, 'These are people like me.'  We can't."  Salon

Raleigh, N.C.:  The governor vetoed a pro-fracking bill, but pro-frackers worked to override it.  However, governor's allies, led by Rep. Becky Carney, had the veto beat, by one vote--except that when it came time to actually vote, Carney pushed the wrong button, and the veto won.  Carney:  "Oh my gosh."   ABC News (tip: The Atlantic)

Chicago:  Win-Win!  Chicago has a sky-high murder rate this summer.  So, do-gooders sponsored a $100 buy-back for every gun turned in (regardless of condition).  Winners:  People get $100 a gun.  Criminals know that fewer victims will be armed.  Pro-gun group organizes hand-ins of rusty guns to fund a youth camp to encourage gun ownership.   Chicago Sun-Times

Las Vegas:  Can't Possibly Be True!  Prof. Tom Kubistant of Western Nevada College ran his Human Sexuality course about like a spittle-encrusted, bottom-feeding pervert would have run it, with minimal academic overlay--at least if Karen Royce's lawsuit is to be believed.  (Karen, at age 60, balked at the "required" number of masturbations she had to journalize in order to pass.)  Courthouse News Service
New York City:  July Special at the Uni K Waxing salon--50% off!  (Umm, it's for girls 15 and under.)  "If she's going to [bunk] with all these girls [at camp], and she feels insecure because she hasn't taken care of the hair on her lip or her legs . . .."   Huffington Post

More Things to Worry About

Miami, Fla.:  Quartavious Davis, 20, is still shell-shocked.  No prior record, fired a gun only twice, 162 yrs in prison, no parole.  (Bonus: Not in Texas!)   Reuters via Huffington Post

Myrtle Beach, S.C.:  Motorcyclists claim that a county law against doing "burnouts" is an unconstitutional curtailment of their first-amendment right of macho.  (Seriously.)   The Sun News (Myrtle Beach, S.C.)

Jacksonville, Fla.:  The Aristocrat.  He buys enema 6-packs at a CVS, uses them, sticks the squirters back in the box, re-seals it, and takes it in for a refund.   The Smoking Gun

Abingdon, England:  Ever see the movie Snatch?  (Spoiler:  Two crooks in that movie, just like these guys last week, kept pushing the "pull" door to get away, until they finally just smashed the door open to flee.)   World's Greatest Newspaper

Boston:  Suspicions Confirmed (though it sounds a little low);  A Harvard Medical School study found that about 1 teenager in 12 has Intermittent Explosive Disorder.   Boston Globe

London:  Once in a while, a magical new research funding magnet comes along.  A June article in BMC Medical Genetics ID'd seven genetic markers that contribute to fixing a woman's breast size, and two of them also mark for breast cancer.  The money should be rolling in soon!  Fox News

Amman, Jordan:  Coming Soon to America!  Muhammed Shawabka, a Member of Parliament, was TV-debating the Syrian uprising with some guy when name-calling started, then a shoe went flying, then the MP pulled out a gun and started waving it around.  (Bonus: This is what's already here in America:  Glenn Beck's website treated the news of Andy Griffith's death straight-up.  The Comments section, though, reveals that a few of Glenn's fans, wish they could, among other things, spit, tinkle, and vomit on Griffith's grave--for no reason other than that he appeared in a pro-Obamacare ad.  And again, this is Andy Griffith they're talking about, not Obama/Biden/Pelosi. )   Los Angeles Times   /// (tip:

Thanks to Scott Huber and to the mighty NOTW Board of Editorial Advisors.