Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Anguished Man: Painted in Blood

I received a correspondence from a reader in the United Kingdom that centers around an odd painting that is aptly titled "The Anguished Man" and is supposedly haunted:

Hi, I thought this might interest you...
My Grandmother had this painting in her attic for twenty five years. She said it was evil. She told us she used to see the dark figure of a man around the house and at night she heard strange noises and crying. She told me the artist committed suicide shortly after finishing it and that he had used his own blood mixed in with the oils. After she died we got the painting, it is currently in our basement. Shortly after we got the painting various members of the family started seeing the dark figure of a man. At night we began hearing noises and just recently we have heard crying and moaning. The painting is still in our house and although I never believed in the supernatural I am now convinced there is something evil about this painting. I am currently awaiting a full paranormal investigation being carried out.
- Sean Robinson

Click for video - 6/1/2010
My Grandmother had this painting in her attic for twenty five years. She said it was evil. She told us she used to see the dark figure of a man around the house and at night she heard strange noises and crying. She told me the artist committed suicide shortly after finishing it and that he had used his own blood mixed in with the oils. After she died we got the painting, it is currently in our basement. Shortly after we got the painting various members of the family started seeing the dark figure of a man. At night we began hearing noises and just recently we have heard crying and moaning. The painting is still in our house and although I never believed in the supernatural I am now convinced there is something evil about this painting.....

Click for video - 6/18/2010
The noises have been getting worse. We have heard crying coming from the corner of our bedroom. We started seeing the dark figure standing at the bottom of the bed, just apparently staring at us. It seems to be a middle aged man but his features are not very clear. As a former sceptic I'm very curious so I'm moving the painting into our bedroom, previously it's been in a cupboard downstrairs. I'm feeling apprehensive and a little scared....I'll keep updating.

Clcik for video - update 12/19/2010
Things seemed to have settled down so I moved the painting again, now it's started again with a vengeance. The noises are much worse, I'm finding it difficult to get any sleep. I have no explanation for what is happening but I'm convinced it is all related to the painting. I'm going to set up a camera to try and capture some of the activity.....I'll keep you updated.

Click for video - update 1/3/2011
I was recently looking at some photographs that were taken when I was transporting the painting in my car, when I noticed something strange. My two sons were messing about in the back seat when one of them took this photograph of his younger brother. Is this a trick of the light or could this be the spirit that inhabits 'The Anguished Man'?

Click for video - update 2/16/2011
I moved the painting back into the top bedroom. I set the video camera up and recorded for approx. eight hours over three consecutive nights. After spending several hours looking at the footage this is what I found. There were many other sounds recorded but they sounded like they came from outside, these were different. Shortly after moving the painting my wife felt someone stroke her hair in the bathroom and I saw a strange fog like mist at the top of the stairs that vanished as quickly as it came. The painting is now back in the cellar for the time being.

NOTE: I referred the reader to SRI...pending outcome and pursuant to the current investigation. Lon

Fortean / Alternative News: Perplexing Encounter, ANONYMOUS Warns WBC and Sheep Mutilations

A Perplexing Encounter

MUFON CMS - Nebraska - unedited: The morning of February 7, 2011, I was driving to work. It was a particularly dark morning, cloudy, and the moon and stars weren't visible. As I was driving along the two lane highway, off to the west I could see something glowing over a hill, much like a combine looks when it's harvesting at night in the fall, or even like the sun might look as it's coming up over the horizon in the east. Just a glow. I drove for a mile or two, keeping an eye on the glow, wondering just what it was coming from. I cleared a hill on the highway and could see around the hill, and as soon as I looked to see what was causing the glow, something shot from the ground to the sky, almost like a falling star would look, except going up instead of down. It was so fast I didn't have time to make out a shape or any details, except that it seemed to have a greenish glow to the trail it left, which dissipated within seconds. The whole thing, from time I saw the glow, til it disappeared into the sky, was maybe a minute, tops. The flash of it disappearing into the sky was very quick. I was searched the sky to try and see what it was, but couldn't see anything. The glow had disappeared from over the horizon. I was quite shaken by what I saw. I've driven country roads by myself at night and in the dark ever since I was a teenager and nothing's ever made my skin crawl like seeing this did. I didn't file any reports (what would I say?) and the only people I told were my brother and a friend who is also interested in UFOs and unexplained events. I still drive by that place in the field every morning when I go to work, but haven't seen anything since that day. I do get an eerie feeling though, just remembering what I saw.


ANONYMOUS drops the hammer on WBC

Open Letter to Westboro Baptist Church


February 16, 2011


We, the collective super-consciousness known as ANONYMOUS - the Voice of Free Speech & the Advocate of the People - have long heard you issue your venomous statements of hatred, and we have witnessed your flagrant and absurd displays of inimitable bigotry and intolerant fanaticism. We have always regarded you and your ilk as an assembly of graceless sociopaths and maniacal chauvinists & religious zealots, however benign, who act out for the sake of attention & in the name of religion.

Being such aggressive proponents for the Freedom of Speech & Freedom of Information as we are, we have hitherto allowed you to continue preaching your benighted gospel of hatred and your theatrical exhibitions of, not only your fascist views, but your utter lack of Christ-like attributes. You have condemned the men and women who serve, fight, and perish in the armed forces of your nation; you have prayed for and celebrated the deaths of young children, who are without fault; you have stood outside the United States National Holocaust Museum, condemning the men, women, and children who, despite their innocence, were annihilated by a tyrannical embodiment of fascism and unsubstantiated repugnance. Rather than allowing the deceased some degree of peace and respect, you instead choose to torment, harass, and assault those who grieve.

Your demonstrations and your unrelenting cascade of disparaging slurs, unfounded judgments, and prejudicial innuendos, which apparently apply to every individual numbered amongst the race of Man - except for yourselves - has frequently crossed the line which separates Freedom of Speech from deliberately utilizing the same tactics and methods of intimidation and mental & emotional abuse that have been previously exploited and employed by tyrants and dictators, fascists and terrorist organizations throughout history.

ANONYMOUS cannot abide this behavior any longer. The time for us to be idle spectators in your inhumane treatment of fellow Man has reached its apex, and we shall now be moved to action. Thus, we give you a warning: Cease & desist your protest campaign in the year 2011, return to your homes in Kansas, & close your public Web sites.

Should you ignore this warning, you will meet with the vicious retaliatory arm of ANONYMOUS: We will target your public Websites, and the propaganda & detestable doctrine that you promote will be eradicated; the damage incurred will be irreversible, and neither your institution nor your congregation will ever be able to fully recover. It is in your best interest to comply now, while the option to do so is still being offered, because we will not relent until you cease the conduction & promotion of all your bigoted operations & doctrines.

The warning has been given. What happens from here shall be determined by you.



Workers find nearly $1M stashed inside wall

elpasotimes - It is the kind of wall insulation everyone in El Paso would love to have -- cold or hot.

Workmen fixing broken pipes that burst because of the freezing weather two weeks ago found a bundle of money inside a wall.

Police would not say how much, but an official knowledgeable about the case said the amount is just shy of $1 million.

El Paso police spokesman Darrel Petry on Wednesday confirmed reports of the discovery inside a condo in the 6200 block of Escondido. Petry said he didn't know how much money was found, but described it as a "large sum."

District Attorney Jaime Esparza also confirmed that the money was found and said the case is still under investigation.

Asked for comment, officials with the Drug Enforcement Administration directed all questions to the El Paso Police Department.

Officials would not say in what denominations were found, what condition the money was in and where it is now.

They also would not speculate on the source of the money and whether is was stashed legally or whether it may be connected to the drug trade.

Speaking in general terms, Petry said that in the past, discoveries of large sums of money have been tied to drug activity.

"That has been the case in a vast majority of the cases that I've seen in the past," Petry said.

Petry said that in those past cases, officers investigated the origins of the money as part of operations with other law enforcement agencies. He said normal procedure in the other cases was to first learn whom the money belonged to, and then continue the investigation from there.

Discoveries of large sums of money are not uncommon in El Paso.

In January, Customs and Border Protection agents seized more than $400,000 in cash during a check of cars headed into Mexico.

Last year, officials seized $530,000 at the Stanton Street bridge and found $212,000 in a Lower Valley home.

In 2006, Mexican officials confiscated $1 million in cash at the Zaragoza Bridge.

U.S. officials have said that most of the large cash seizures are connected to drug trafficking.

The condo is along a strip of properties managed by DANA Properties.

A manager who answered the phone at DANA Properties Wednesday said he had "no comment on anything that has to do with that investigation."

Members of the Sierra Del Sol Homeowners Association also declined to discuss the discovery, citing security concerns.


Brazil: Sheep Mutilations in Ceará

From Scott Corrales at Inexplicata-The Journal of Hispanic Ufology:

Source: Planeta UFO
Date: 02.18.11

Brazil: Sheep Mutilations in Ceará
By Paulo R. Poian

Sheep farmers from the communities of Espinhos and Pizunha, nearly five kilometers distant from the capital of the Cruz Municipality in the heartland of Ceará are facing a desperate situation: animals are being attacked at night and having their eyes ripped out. This information was submitted by agronomist Antonio dos Santos Oliveira Lima, who lives in the city. "Some sheep were found dead, but others were found alive the next day, mutilated. However, unable to survive, their owners were forced to put them down," says Oliveira Lima. Animals belonging mainly to Lucio and Joao Alferes and other regional livestock farmers were affected. "Some ascribe the attacks to ETs, others believe that predatory birds known as guaxinins are involved, and others blame wolf-men. There are even those who place the blame on people who remove the organs for black magic rituals."

According to the agronomist, over 40 animals have had their eyes removed. In a single night, 15 were mutilated in a pen without neighbors hearing any noise. "Upon examining the victims, one had the impression that the organs were removed with a very sharp blade, as there is no deformation of the affected area. For this reason, some believe that this cannot be the action of natural predators," adds Oliveira Lima. All incisions were made in an identical manner, with eyes being extracted in all cases.

The information we have received up to now was collected by the Centro Sobralense de Pesquisa Ufológica (CSPU - Sobralense UFO Research Center), by the Grupo Ufológico de Guarajuá (GUG) and conveyed by reports received at the Portal da Ufología Brasileira ( The situation has reached such extremes that the Diario do Noreste newspaper published an article on 20 October [2010] on the mutilations, taking the sheep farmers' concerns seriously. "At daybreak, I found over a dozen sheep -- out of 16 I was raising -- attacked at once. Some of them were dead in a lagoon that's on my property. The only animal seen in the area was a puppy," said David Geraldo de Vasconcelos. "Other animals were also attacked in the same region."

(Special thanks to Paulo Poian and Guillermo Gimenez. Translation (c) 2011, S. Corrales, IHU)


USC transplants kidney into wrong person

USC University Hospital shut down its kidney transplant program last month after a kidney was accidentally transplanted into the wrong patient, according to a spokesman for the program that coordinates organ transplants in Los Angeles.

The patient escaped harm apparently because the mistake involved a kidney that happened to be a close enough match, said Bryan Stewart, a spokesman for One Legacy, which was notified of the error by the hospital.

In a statement, the hospital confirmed that it had temporarily and voluntarily halted transplants Jan. 29 after a “process error” was discovered. The hospital did not detail the nature of the error and declined to answer questions. But it said that no patients were harmed.

A spokesman for the state Department of Public Health said the licensing agency was investigating. The hospital said transplants may resume as early as today, pending the conclusion of its own investigation. Continue reading at USC transplants kidney into wrong person

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Bownessie Rears It's Ugly Humps Again

The image of 'Bownessie' taken by IT worker Tom Pickles on Lake Windermere

dailymail - The legend of 'Bownessie' is echoing across the waters of Lake Windermere once again after what is being called the best ever sighting of the mythical sea creature.

Emerging from the mist with oily black skin and three eerie humps, this picture reveals a mystical looking beast gliding through the lake.

The snap was taken on a camera-phone by terrified IT graduate Tom Pickles, 24, who said an animal the size of three cars sped across the lake in front him last Friday.

'It was petrifying and we paddled back to the shore straight away,' he said.

'At first I thought it was a dog and then saw it was much bigger and moving really quickly at about 10 mph. Each hump was moving in a rippling motion and it was swimming fast.'

This is believed to be the eighth sighting of a long hump-backed creature - affectionately known by locals as Bownessie - in the past last five years.

Mr Pickles, who said he watched the creature for 20 seconds, added: 'I could tell it was much bigger underneath from the huge shadow around it.

'Its skin was like a seal's but its shape was completely abnormal - it's not like any animal I've ever seen before.'

Mr Pickles's companion Sarah Harrington, 23, said: 'It was like an enormous snake.

'It freaked us all out but it wasn't until we saw the picture that we thought we'd seen something out of this world.

'I only saw it for a few seconds but all I could think about was that I had to get off the lake.'

The pair - who both work for Shrewsbery based IT company CapGemini - were on the last day of a team building residential training course at Fallbarrow Hall, Bowness, Cumbria.

They had kayaked 300m out into the lake near Belle Isle when they spotted the monster to the south.

Mr Pickles's picture perfectly matches the description of an earlier sighting from the shores of Wray Castle in 2006 by journalism lecturer Steve Burnip.

He said: 'I'm really pleased that someone has finally got a really good picture of it.

'I know what I saw and it shocked me, it had three humps and it's uncanny the likeness between this and what I saw five years ago.'

Monster hunter Thomas Noblett and TV psychic Dean Maynard said this new sighting has fired up their enthusiasm for another search.

The pair have twice scoured the lake with sonar equipment looking for Bownessie, but to no avail.

'We're convinced there's something down there and were going to get straight back out on the water,' said Mr Maynard.

Photo expert David Farnell of Farnell's photographic laboratory in Lancaster, said he couldn't rule out a hoax but this is the best quality image of Bownessie he'd seen.

He said: 'It does look like a real photo but because its been taken on a phone the file size is too small to really tell whether it has been altered on Photoshop or not.'

Sceptics remain unconvinced that something that size could exist in the 11 mile long lake.

Nigel Wilkinson, director of Windermere Lake Cruises, said his boat crew had over 100 years experience out on the water in all conditions and hadn't spotted anything unusual.

He said: 'We carry 1.3 million passengers - that's is 2.6 million eyeballs - and none of them have ever brought Bownessie to our attention.

Dr Ian Winfield, a lake ecologist at the University of Lancaster, said it was highly unlikely that an animal as large as three car lengths could survive in Windermere.

'It's possible that it's a catfish from Eastern Europe and people are misjudging the size but there is no known fish as large as the descriptions were hearing that could be living in Windermere.'

'We run echo sounding surveys every month and have never found anything.'

The mysterious aquatic beast is starting to draw parallels with the infamous Loch Ness monster for drawing even more tourists to the Lake District hot-spot.

Ellis Butcher from Cumbria Tourism said: 'The truth is Windermere and Bowness are incredibly popular destinations and don’t need gimmicks to get people to visit.

'Nonetheless at the start of the tourism year, it doesn’t do the industry any harm to have this kind of profile across the media.'


The Bownessie Search Continues....

Sky - Monster hunters have used sonar equipment for the first time to search for a mysterious creature reportedly living in England's largest lake.

Sky News filmed out on Windermere with the team looking for proof that the beast exists.

In the last four years there have been seven reported sightings of a long humpbacked animal, now nicknamed Bow-Nessie.

Windermere hotel owner, Thomas Noblett, described his strange encounter in the water, saying: "All of a sudden I felt something brush past my legs like a giant fish.

"And then I was lifted up by a 3ft wave. I've no idea what it was."

During the sweep of the lake, the team spotted a strange 14 metre long disturbance in the water but were unable to detect anything on sonar.

Searching Windermere is a huge task as the lake is 220ft deep in parts and over ten miles long.

Hunt organiser, Dean Maynard, said: "We've had more creature sightings here than at Loch Ness in recent years so we think it's time that Bow-Nessie received more attention."

Last year, a local film crew spotted a 20 metre long object below the surface of the lake but sceptics believe the footage shows a wave from an unseen boat.


thewestmorlandgazette - A team of monster hunters will set sail on Windermere in a fresh search for ‘Bownessie’.

Lakeland hotelier Thomas ‘The Gladiator’ Noblett and celebrity psychic Dean ‘Midas’ Maynard will embark on their second journey into the depths of Windermere in search of the fabled monster.

The two men led a team of investigators to the lake to look for evidence last year but returned empty handed.

“Since last year, a lot of local people have told me they have felt something in the lake but have been too scared to say anything,” said Mr Noblett, owner of the Langdale Chase Hotel.

“There is obviously something large in there. You just have to look at the depth, width and length of it to know that.”

Bownessie was first spotted by tourist Steve Burnip in 2006. Mr Burnip described a serpent like creature, around 15-feet in length, at the north end of the lake.

Mr Noblett was prompted to prove the existence of the creature when he was hit by a three-foot wave whilst swimming on Windermere last year.

“A lot of people boo-hoo it but they are mainly people who have never set foot in the Lakes,” said Mr Noblett.

“Those who have seen it describe it as a very long and eel-like. One sailor told me he saw what looked like a big slab of meat roll past his boat and disappear underneath the boat.

“It could be a very large catfish that has just grown to be really big. Some of those fish do live for a very long time.”

Mr Noblett and his crew of three will set out on a £300,000 yacht using sonar equipment to try and track Bownessie.

They will explore the deepest part of the lake and sail to a spot near Gummers Howe, where the creature was snapped by Winderemere photographer Linden Adams in 2007.

“Whenever I swim across the lake I always get the heebys jeebies at that part. There is a real eerie feeling around there.”

Mr Maynard said: "The last Bownessie investigation was very memorable and we are hoping to have the same if not better results this time around.

"Since last year I have been contacted by many members of the public who have told me that they have also witnessed seeing something large in the lake over the past few years and we hope to get more evidence to back up these claims."

The Bownessie hunters will set sail on September 11.

Click for video

Originally posted 9/6/2009

In Search Of Bownessie - A team of investigators will scour Windermere in a hunt for a legendary monster that is claimed to lurk in its deep waters.

The search follows years of reported sightings of a big creature in the lake, the most recent being in July when Lake District hotelier Thomas Noblett was hit by a three-foot wave as he was swimming.

A chartered boat will take to England’s longest lake on September 19 with celebrity and sports psychic Dean Maynard at the helm. He will be joined by Windermere photographer Linden Adams who claims to have seen ‘Bownessie’ – the nickname for the monster – from a viewpoint on Gummers How in 2007.

There will also be people with cameras dotted around the shoreline to capture any unusual activity.

“Linden Adams and I are really geared up and ready for the challenge ahead and we hope to find some concrete evidence something big does exist in the lake," said Mr Maynard.

In 2006 The Westmorland Gazette reported how Huddersfield University journalism lecturer Steve Burnip, of Hebden Bridge, saw a serpent-like creature emerge from the waters as he stood at Watbarrow Point across from Waterhead.

He described it as being 15 to 20 feet long with a little head and two small humps following in its wake. He said it looked like a giant eel.

“I am absolutely convinced that there is a big creature in the lake,” said Mr Burnip. “I am really pleased that there is a renewed interest in it because I know what I saw.

“I can see it in my head now, this grey lump and the humps breaking the water like you see in the classic Loch Ness pictures. There is something in there, something quite big and elusive.”

Mr Adams, whose picture of the creature was studied by photographic experts after appearing on the front page of the Gazette, said: “I looked at it through binoculars and the naked eye and what I saw was huge.

"A lot of photographic experts have had the opportunity to look at the pictures and they are still baffled.”

Ecology experts have told the Gazette that catfish are sometimes introduced to lakes by anglers. They believe that what could be being seen is the Welsh catfish that originates from mainland Europe.

Originally posted 7/23/2009

'Windermere Monster' Wake Pummels Swimmer

A bizarre swimming incident on Windermere coincided with the announcement that a team of paranormal investigators will plumb the lake’s depths in search of a giant creature.

Thomas Noblett, 46, was swimming the lake this week when he was suddenly swamped by a three-foot wave of unknown origin.

A spate of eyewitness sightings reported by The Gazette during 2006-2007 described a 50-foot long serpent-like animal surfacing on Windermere.

Psychic Dean ‘Midas’ Maynard, who came to prominence by accurately predicting sports score lines and X factor winners, will join The Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ), in the hunt for the beast in September.

Mr Noblett trains on the lake for four hours every day in preparation for a channel swim.

Never having had to deal with anything more than the odd passing trout, the 46-year-old said he had since reconsidered the legend of the Windemere monster.

“I didn’t entertain it before. Now when I’m in the lake it has my full attention,” he said.

Mr Noblett, managing director of The Langdale Chase Hotel, was swimming close to Wray Castle at 7am on Wednesday morning when the 3ft swell hit.

He and swimming trainer Andrew Tighe – paddling in a boat beside him – were the only people on the lake.

“We had gotten up early and Windermere was crystal clear. The lake was totally empty apart from us and all I could hear was the slapping of my arm against the water,” explained Mr Noblett.

“All of a sudden this wave just hit us. Andrew said ‘where the hell did that come from?’ and it made the boat rock from side to side,” he continued.

Treading water, alone, in the centre of the lake, Mr Noblett watched as two large waves sped towards either shore.

“It was like a big bow wave; a three-foot swell at least. There was two, as if a speed boat had sped past, but there were no boats on the lake,” he said.

Previously an escape from the jellyfish he dodges while training at sea, Mr Noblett said the lake’s depths were not so inviting anymore.

“I always look forward to swimming in Windermere, now I’m starting to get the fear. Twice I have looked down and seen fish, but only small trout. The reeds sometimes scare you, because they suddenly appear like triffids.”

Devon-based CFZ are the world’s only full time cryptozoology organisation for the study of unknown animals.

Dean ‘Midas’ Maynard will join CFZ in September to search the lake for the monster.

Mr Maynard, with a background in ghost hunting, is currently searching for a sonar-equipped boat to use in the search.

“It’s a fascinating subject. I’m not saying there is or isn’t something down there. Most eyewitness accounts describe some sore of eel, which if living in open water can grow very big,” said Mr Maynard.

Mr Noblett is swimming across the English Channel in mid October. He hopes to raise £10,000 for Richard Rose Central Academy in Carlisle and the Cyctic Fibrosis Trust.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Suspected Monster Spotted in Lake

Windermere, UK - Sightings of a suspected monster in Windermere have prompted claims that it could be the English equivalent of Nessie.

The 50ft long "creature" was snapped by photographer Linden Adams, 35, who was out walking with his wife near the lake recently.

They were at a secluded spot more than 1,000ft up a mountain when they spotted a dark shape moving in the water.

"It just came out of the blue," said Mr Adams. "The water was incredibly peaceful and then this huge thing appeared, diving and thrashing around."

He thought it was 50 ft long when compared to boats nearby.

He said it had a head like a labrador, only "much, much bigger".


Mr Adams, from Bowness-on-Windermere, said he knew the lake well and what he saw was not a freak wave or boat. His sighting comes just months after scientists visited Windermere to examine claims by a tourist that they saw a 20 ft "serpent-like" creature.

A team of scientists visited the site last October to interview eye-witnesses and sent divers to Coniston Water to investigate reports of similar sightings there.

Mr Adams has christened his find the Bowness monster. "When I looked at my pictures on my computer I realised I had something," he added.

He sent his picture to a forensic photographer who confirmed it had not been digitally enhanced.

Richard Freeman, of the centre for Fortean Zoology which researches mystery animals, said the sightings could be giant sterile eels which, unlike normal eels, stay in fresh water and "get bigger and bigger".

NOTE: Once again I am posting an update to the Bownessie saga. I've been watching this tale develop and continue for about 3 years. Frankly, I think this 'cryptid' is a tourist grab for the Langdale Chase Hotel. Why? Well, in 2008 I was asked by a LakesTV representative to publish the screen captures from the original video (above) on my blog. The video was located on the LakesTV website at the time. I asked if I could use the video and was denied...I was told that they wanted to 'market the video and it would be copyrighted'. I declined to publish the screen captures and decided to wait until something else popped up on this 'creature'. Then in July 2009, the owner of the hotel, Thomas Noblett, conveniently experienced a 'rogue wave' while swimming in the lake. It could very well be a large eel or fish...but using the 'Nessie' moniker as part of a name is somewhat disingenuous. Anyway, you make your own determination on this 'cryptid'. I would really like opinions on this, especially from those who have investigated the sightings...Lon

Fortean / Alternative News: British Northern Lights, NYC Apocalypse Manual and Dwarf Village Mystery

Storm to bring Northern Lights to Britain - Britain should experience spectacular Northern Lights displays from Thursday due to a large solar storm which could disrupt communication networks, the British Geological Survey (BGS) said.

"Since February 13 three energetic solar flares have erupted on the sun and spewed clouds of charged plasma called coronal mass ejections (CMEs) out towards the earth," a BGS geomagnetic storm warning said.

"Already one CME arrived on the 14th sparking Valentine's Day displays of the Northern Lights (aurora borealis) further south than usual.

"Two CMEs are expected to arrive in the next 24-48 hours and further...displays are possible some time over the next two nights if skies are clear."

The strongest storm in four years is expected to interfere with satellites and electrical networks, with astronomers in southern China already reporting disturbances to radio communications.

The BGS Wednesday published geomagnetic records dating back to the Victorian era which it hopes will help in planning for future storms.

"Life increasingly depends on technologies that didn't exist when the magnetic recordings began," Alan Thomson, BGS head of geomagnetism said.

"Studying the records will tell us what we have to plan and prepare for to make sure systems can resist solar storms," he added.


New York City's Official Apocalypse Manual (Download)

villagevoice - Should New York City face a "very grim" situation, the government has the right to "establish curfews, quarantine wide areas, close businesses, restrict public assemblies and, under certain circumstances, suspend local ordinances," the New York Times explains in a feature this morning about the legal rulebook that governs potentially apocalyptic times. It's terrifying in theory, but also very boring because it's written by lawyers. The "New York State Public Health Legal Manual," a/k/a The Oh My God We're All Goin' to Die book, "provides a catalog of potential terrorism nightmares, like smallpox, anthrax or botulism episodes." But don't worry, they have a plan.

The rules oscillate between chaos and order, using dry language and "We're in charge here"-style optimism to describe situations where people would likely be screaming in the streets. Basically, you can loot someone's house, but expect to face the consequences after things get sorted out with the ravenous disease because "violations of individual property rights, if actionable, would generally be sorted out after the need for such actions has ended." That sort of thing.

And it provides chilling instructions on how to proceed with cases in the midst of outbreaks of contagious disease. The stockpiled gloves and respirators "already available at many courthouses," it says, may be necessary.

But the image of an infected New Yorker surrounded by a masked judge, lawyers, and court officers was a miserable one even for this gruesome guide. "The wearing of respirators by the multiple participants in a courtroom setting, would no doubt be disruptive," the manual notes.

Download the whole manual here, share it with your family and decide now which Dean and Deluca you're going to pillage first.


Burglar killed goldfish because he didn’t want any witnesses

Three goldfish were killed by a 16-year-old burglar because he “didn’t want to leave any witnesses”, police have revealed. The teenager was arrested and charged by police with residential burglary and cruelty to animals following the incident in January.

According to Arlington Heights Police, Illinois, the youth – along with a 15- and 17-year-old – broke into a house and stole a games console and 30 games, CD player, 30 DVDs,a BB gun, jewellery and a safe.

The 16-year-old is then alleged to have poured mustard, ketchup and spices into a tank, killing the fish. The police report says the boy looked at the first tank and said “we can’t leave any witnesses,” before carrying out the pointless act of cruelty.

Sgt. Mike Hernandez of the Arlington Heights Police Department, Illinois, said: “As a matter of fact, it’s a little disturbing.”


Dwarf Village in Ecuador: Unlocking the Cancer Mystery?

news.gather - A dwarf village in Ecuador has been the subject of a study to determine why cancer and diabetes is extremely rare among its 100 inhabitants. Researchers from the University of California wonder if blocking growth hormones in full grown adults might unlock the cancer mystery.

An article published in the Science Translational Medicine suggests that blocking growth hormones through prescription drugs or diet may enable future societies to live without "major illness."

Valter Longo, who led the team of researchers, said the potential side effects would be a fair trade for the devastation of cancer and other serious diseases. "It's the dream of every administration, anywhere in the world....You live a long healthy life, and then you drop dead."

Fox News reports that the 23 year study included the dwarfs and about 1600 relatives of normal stature. They found no documented cases of diabetes, and one "non-lethal" cancer case. Growth hormone deficient dwarfs lead normal lives, says Longo, but they also appear to die for "strange reasons", including those related to alcohol.

It seems logical that a growth inhibitor might slow cancer cells along with others, and Longo and his team are hoping for approval to begin clinical trials. Will this dwarf village finally reveal a cure for cancer? One can only hope.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Mount St. Helens Strangeness

Because of recent rumblings at the Mount St. Helens volcano, I decided to once again offer some strangeness associated with the area. The first anecdote is similar to an account I read several years ago. I noticed that it had been posted again but with a few more details. I don't know the validity of the story but it is definitely worth the read:


In 1973 I met two very tall persons, about 8 to 12 feet tall; a man and woman on the side of Mt St Helens. I went there as a prep trip to go canoeing on the, not there now, Spirit Lake. Since it was March, I found the lake under snow drifts so I went up to the top of the mountain to climb it.

As I got out of my VW super Beatle I was overcome with fear. Terror gripped me.

Try as I might I could not force myself to cross the parking lot to the beginning of the trail where a family were beginning their ascent. I could not move because the fear within me petrified my body.

I then saw in my mind's eye, through my third eye, the mountain blowing up right underneath me. I saw the mountain and the rocks and the trees below me and all around me being superheated and exploding into shreds.

I shouted to the family to get out of there because the mountain was about to blow. They looked at me like I was some nut probably on drugs. I did have long hair in those days.

The day was a beautiful, clear day, and I quickly realized that the sensation I was receiving was only a premonition of an event to come. I fell back into my car and got outta there.

On the way down I stopped at the Lodge where I bought some beer from the owner, Harry Truman, who made a snide comment to me when I stopped to debate getting a bag of chips after buying some beer. I almost, with knowing, said to him that some day he would die up there with his mountain; I didn't, and I left.

Farther down the mountain top as I turned a sharp corner I passed by two persons who were dressed in white robes. At first glance I thought that they were Harri Krishna's out for a hike, and being twenty miles from Toledo, WA I pulled over and got out to offer them a ride to town.

Immediately, two things happened.

First, as I walked up to them I realized that I had to look up at them like I was looking at the top of a basketball net. That realization freaked me out, but I love an adventure. As I walked up to them, I offered to give them a lift to town.

The woman then turned to the man and said quietly, "I thought we were supposed to meet someone here." The man who also had long hair only slightly raised his right hand in my direction to indicate that I was the contactee they were waiting for.

This point was not lost on me.

Next, a car pulled up and asked me if I was alright. Again my senses told me all was not all. I "knew" the man and car load of four persons, perhaps a man and his wife in the front seat with his daughter and son in the back seat could not see the tall persons towering over me.

I said that I was simply overtaken by the beauty of the scenery and just had to get out and look at it. Slowly, very slowly, they drove away. I had covered for what to then seemed like me talking to imaginary persons.

But they were real, very real.

The woman again turned to the man and said, "He can see us," to which he replied, "He's in an altered state of consciousness."

Then the man turned to me and said, "You deceived them?"

Thinking that I had done them a favor by covering for them, I did not have a ready reply. I then asked them if they wanted a ride to town. I was torn at this point between what I know about my reality on this dimension and what really knew I knew who were standing before me were beings who were not from this dimension.Yet, I could not wholly accept that fact.

The man turned to the woman and said with a sweeping gesture toward the car "Shall we?"

So they walked to the car. I wanted to tell them about what had just happened on top of Mt. St. Helen. As they approached my Super Beatle I knew that they were very very tall; not normally tall but way tall and would not fit in my car.

I said, "Maybe it's not such a good idea," to which the man replied, "We'll fit fine."

Before my eyes those two beings began to shrink. The man got into the back seat along with the lady, which in our culture the man would usually get into the front, right?

After they got in the man turned to the woman and said, "Are you okay?" she said, "I'm fine."

I needed a beer. I opened a Bud (this was rural backwoods Washington State and 1973) and offered them a beer too. I took in my now normal sized guest in the back seat of my souped up Super Beatle.

Their robes were somewhat soiled, and had dirt marks and signs of wear like they had been hiking through the woods. I did not expect this from what I had come to accept as aliens or some kind of angels.

They really looked real. The guy had very long fingers and that's when I saw that, to my surprise, that he had six fingers on his hands!

Since I was driving at the time the man said in a polite but commanding voice, "Turn around and watch the road," to which I replied as any young twenty year old who had already totaled three cars doing stunts...

"I'm good man. I can drive and talk at the same time."

"What are you drinking?" He said,

"It's a Bud," I said.

"What is that," he said.

"Beer, you know, alcohol."

That's when he said, "Alcohol? That's poison."

My guest hesitated for a few seconds before he spoke again,

"Alcohol is going to cause you a lot of problems in your lifetime." He was right about that.

I turned around again to scope out these two hitchhikers. The young woman smiled. They both looked to be in their early thirties. She had long brown hair. His hair was as long as hers which was at least shoulder length

I said, "Toledo's twenty miles away. That would have been a long walk," I said.

"What were you doing on the mountain?" he asked.

My mind was fighting with the thought now of that I just may have two aliens who just shape shifted in size in the back of my car, and who just chewed me out for drinking. I was beginning to question my rationality, and what if they wanted to eat me or something?

I told them all about my experience on the mountain and the feeling and the vision I had just had. That's when he began to give me specific details about the date, the time eruption of Mount St Helen. He even told me how many people were going to die up there.

"About 60 to 70 people will die on that mountain when it erupts," he said.

Sixty eight died on it that May 18th in 1980.

Seven years later I would find myself working for Lewis County as a transporter for Senior Services. I had something to do with the red zone being established, but that's another story. I had told so many predictions about the mountain that came true before the eruption that one grandma, just after it erupted, said "You did it! You made that mountain blow up!"

The alien, or whatever, said something that triggered a repressed memory I had. He said it would happen because of the flood that we had prevented that year.

Then I began to feel real strange about this encounter. I was sure that he could not have known about the topographical map I had drawn in my cabin last year, and how I had highlighted in blue everything in the state of Washington under 3,000 feet and wrote a short story about me and my family living on Mt St Helen Island after the flood, or could he?

"Who are you," I asked.

The woman leaned over to him and quietly with her easy smile asked him, "Should we tell him who we are?"

"No," he said.

Then he said to me, "We're Watchers," he said.

Right about then I knew I had stepped into a forest I did not know the way through.

"I mean what's your names?"

He said his name was, "My name is Geruisyumain."

I said I would not be able to remember his name, and I didn't for thirty three years. Then in a dream I heard his name as he had spoken it.

"And my name is Isyu. It's real easy to remember. Just think about it this way. Say "Is you," and you will remember it."

I did remember it. Also I read something unique about the name IS You and a significance about that name...but again, I can't place what that importance is.. you guys know?

Of all the wonderful questions I could have asked them I failed to do so. I still beat myself up for letting a great opportunity slip through my fingers out of primal fear of the unknown.

We were about ten miles out of Toledo, Washington by then and Gerisyumain said "Pull over, here and when we get out don't look back."

So I pulled over, and let them out. And of course as I pulled away I looked back to see them grow back to their ten-ish or so feet height and then vanish.

Later, the next year in a total accident, I was pinned inside my Super Beatle on an bridge over a river. With no way out and not knowing how to swim, I was lifted out of the window and flown out over the river. I was set down in front of a car and the driver took me to the hospital.

"Who are you?" she asked.

I'm just a man," I replied. It's all that any of us can be.

NOTE: yeah, it's sound a bit fabricated...but who knows. Lon


The following is something I originally posted last Spring:

Sasquatch and the U.S. Government

The following are accounts and links that suggest the government has more than a curious interest in Sasquatch:

Cowlitz County, Washington - 1980 May - at one of Ray Crowe's Western Bigfoot Meetings, someone brought up the topic of corpses of sasquatch after the May 18, 1980 eruption of Mt. St. Helens in Washington State. The witness heard of two sasquatch the Army Corps of Engineers had taken out of the volcanic devistation...two months after the inital blast.

Terry Reams heard of a dredging operation of the Cowlitz River and two bodies were found in the sand (probably same case?). A chopper flew them off.

Joe Beelart offered that the crane doing the dredging was from the Manatowaka Company and that the bodies were found two weeks after the Mt. St. Helen's blast of May 18, 1980. He suggested that somebody might want to track down the company and find out who was working the shift that the bodies had been found on.

During a tour of the devastation by helicopter in 1985, the Viet veteran helo pilot mentioned a similar tale to Bobbie Short saying there were military helos that choppered out nets full of burned and semi burned elk, deer, bear and something with hairy charred arms hanging out of the drop nets. They were taken to a common pit where the bodies were burned to avoid disease and contamination of the rivers.

The International Bigfoot Society

IBS Report #3493


Fred Bradshaw report concerning dead Bigfoot bodies near Mt. St. Helens.

My father worked for Weyerhauser Co. at Green Mountain ,WA, east of Vancouver. The site has security on their roads to check on the equipment and check closed areas to keep people out.

My father was working the day Mt. St. Helens blew up. He was at a meeting in Kelso, WA, and as he was a supervisor, when Mt. St. Helens blew it's side out, all heck cut lose.

My father was sent back to Green Mountain right away but like most he wasn't allowed to go very far because of the mud slide coming down the river. He did get to the town of Toutle, WA, on highway 504 off I-5. He and his crew were placed at different spots to watch mud flow and of course help people get out of the blast zone after the major blow up. He was sent to the area of Spirit Lake to keep people out.

When the second major blow up of the mountain came, my father and the other guy with him reported in, and they got out of there.

He was then placed in charge of the helicopter landing zone. It was his job to help keep people out of the landing zone and let aid crews in so they could care for injured.

Later. when all the people were out and bodies out, the National Guard was brought in to clean up. They hauled dead animals out that they placed in piles; deer in one, elk in another and so on. They were covered up with tarps and later burned.

But my father was placed in charge of one pile of dead that were covered and no one was allowed to go near. Armed U.S. National Guard personal were around this pile, and one day when they were going to move this group of bodies, and my father was very close to it and was told to keep his mouth closed. And when the tarps were removed he saw the creatures, some badly burned and some not. They placed them in a net and lifted them into a truck and covered it over. My father asked a guardsmen what will they do with them and he said study them or what ever...he didn't want to know. He said it's like other things you don't ask, and off they went . AND NO ONE KNOWS WHAT HAPPENED TO THEM. My father and the rest were debriefed and sent home.

NOTE: After I had posted the following Oh-Mah - The 'Boss of the Woods' in November 2008, I received an email from a man in southern Washington who stated that he had heard anecdotes from Yakima native people in reference Oh-Mah or Sasquatch after the Mt. St. Helen's eruption. The most prominent account was that of a large male Oh-Mah that was badly burned, but still alive, that took refuge in an area east of the devastation near traditional tribal lands. He was told that government agents in military gear captured the Oh-Mah and airlifted it to an undisclosed location. I have no way of knowing if this is a true account but it does seem to suggest that there was an effort made to take advantage of the eruption in order to capture specimans either dead or alive...Lon



The following is an interesting post from July 2008:

Woman Claims She Was Abducted By Aliens Near Mount St. Helens

Joy French is fully aware that it sounds a little far-fetched to say that she might have been abducted by an alien near Mount St. Helens more than two decades ago.

But since she began hosting UFO meetings in April 2007, she has seen and heard so much evidence of extraterrestrial encounters that she wishes she had spoken up earlier. Now the energetic octogenarian devotes her life to opening closed minds.

“We are the only country trying not to tell the truth about UFOs,” she said. “The government is not being honest with people.”

French, 84, of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, will host a meeting for believers in UFO sightings — and those who want to believe — at 7 p.m. Friday in the Cowlitz County PUD meeting room.

French lived in Longview from 1965 to ‘67. In the early 1980s she was staying in a small trailer on Lake Merwin. A friend camping in the area, Don McMann, called her on the CB radio and invited her to watch a video with him.

Most of that night is a blank. She remembers starting to drive downhill to his trailer, and the next thing she remembers is being a passenger in her car, with him driving.

“I’m an independent person,” she said, so being a passenger made no sense to her. “I usually drive my own car.”

She doesn’t recall watching the movie. She said neither of them drank.

This took place around 10 or 11 p.m., in the thick darkness of a mountain forest. Suddenly the sky lit up as bright as daylight, and her 1966 Cadillac stopped dead.

McMann, a mechanic, hopped out and lifted the hood. He checked the engine and shrugged.

“There’s nothing wrong with your car,” he said. He slammed the hood, and the car started.

“That’s the last thing I remember until the next day,” French said.

In the morning, she called McMann on the CB and arranged to meet at the community kitchen.

“I told him, ‘What happened last night, that’s what happens when a UFO’s around,’ ” she said. “He said, ‘I thought of that, too.’ ”

They never spoke of it again, nor did they mention it to the other campers at Merwin because they were afraid of ridicule.

“Now I wonder if the others saw and didn’t tell,” she said.

She believes the light came from a spaceship, and that she and McMann were taken into the craft and examined. Their memories of the incident were erased before they were returned to her car, she believes.

McMann died in 1998. A couple of years ago, French, now living in Idaho, discussed the incident with a childhood friend — and discovered the friend once saw a UFO when she was picking huckleberries.

“The government told her never to speak of it,” French said.

She has read numerous books about extraterrestrials, met investigators and scientists and heard many people share their experiences, including Gloria Hawker, author of “Morning Glory,” an account of being impregnated by an alien.

“Some of this stuff blows my mind,” French said. “It’s kind of hard to swallow.”

She’s positive she didn’t have the same experience as Hawker.

“If they took me and checked me out, they probably threw me back because I had a complete hysterectomy and I’m no good to them,” she said.

French believes extraterrestrials have been visiting Earth for centuries, citing the Egyptian pyramids as one example of their work. She also believes aliens can be credited with the world’s rapid advancements in technology during her own lifetime.

“I can’t believe the government is still covering up,” she said.

She thinks extraterrestrials want to save our world.

“I don’t think they want to hurt us. I think they want to save us from destroying our planet,” she said. “Or pick us up after we destroy it.”

She understands that many people are afraid to come forward and admit they believe in UFOs. She offers her meetings as a safe place to learn more.

“People with closed minds never learn a thing.”

Fortean / Alternative News: Paranormal Investigators Beware! Hole-y Sun and Talking to Aliens

Want to Investigate the Paranormal? BEWARE!

Here at SRI we are quite often contacted by paranormal investigators who have, through the way they investigate, attracted an entity to themselves that eventually causes a big problem.

When looking into their cases we have found that the majority of these entities have been attracted to the investigator by them performing EVP sessions, thus opening a door the investigator is unable to close.

Most people that gather EVPs are not careful with what they are saying, ex. 'do you want to talk to me?' or 'you are welcome'...and one of the worst 'come closer', etc. Think about it...would you say this to a physical human being who may intend you harm? Making statements like this to an entity is no different than on the earth plane. The paranormal holds not only good, but also evil, and as I have said once that door is open there is NO closure for the victim...the entity of dark force has been released.

These entities do not care for your welfare. You are just the host for them...a battery to draw from.

It's not only paranormal investigators who have problems. The onset of unlimited paranormal programs on TV many ordinary people think it would be a bit of fun to try EVPs in their own homes. Once hearing their first EVP they are hooked and they want to do more until it then becomes an obsession...more and more, each time attracting more entities to themselves or their home until it becomes really and truly out-of-hand.

These entities can move from you to a weaker member of the family...for instance, a child. Is that fair your entertainment becomes their nightmare? I don't think so. It does not stop can start to spread like a plague to family members, friends, work mates...anyone you are in contact with. Many will not even notice anything different until that time comes when the entity starts to play up.

Many people who do not really understand or know if they are open to the spirit world have no business searching for these things. No protection, whether it is a circle of salt, a prayer, smudging with a sage stick, surrounding yourself with a white light or whatever you have read or been told will not always stop these entities...there are those that know how to get past it.

I am writing this because, in the 50 years I have been performing my services, there has been an enormous recent increase in attachment cases. In just the last couple of days SRI has received 5 cases that are each as bad as the other. Attachments like these are one of the most difficult to remove. So please, for your sake and those around you, (and to make my job easier) THINK FIRST! Irene Block


Want to talk with aliens? Learn to speak with dolphins

wired - The Kepler Space Telescope announced a new bonanza of distant planets this month, reconfirming that solar systems, some possibly hosting life, are common in the universe.

So if humanity someday arrives at an extraterrestrial cocktail party, will we be ready to mingle? At the Wild Dolphin Project in Jupiter, Florida, researchers train for contact by trying to talk with dolphins.

Behavioral biologist Denise Herzing started studying free-ranging spotted dolphins in the Bahamas more than two decades ago. Over the years, she noticed some dolphins seeking human company, seemingly out of curiosity.

“We thought, ‘This is fascinating, let’s see if we can take it further,’” Herzing said. “Many studies communicate with dolphins, especially in captivity, using fish as a reward. But it’s rare to ask dolphins to communicate with us.”

Dolphins have large, sophisticated brains, elaborately developed in the areas linked to higher-order thinking. They have a complex social structure, form alliances, share duties and display personalities. Put a mirror in their tank and they can recognize themselves, indicating a sense of self.

When trained, they have a remarkable capacity to pick up language. At the Dolphin Institute in Hawaii, Louis Herman and his team taught dolphins hundreds of words using gestures and symbols. Dolphins, they found, could understand the difference between statements and questions, concepts like “none” or “absent,” and that changing word order changes the meaning of a sentence. Essentially, they get syntax.

Some tantalizing studies even suggest dolphins share their own language (see sidebar, “Easier Language Through Math”). All are qualities we’d hope to see in an alien, and no daydream of contact is complete without some attempt at communication. Yet with dolphins, our attempts have involved teaching them to speak our language, rather than meeting in the middle.

Herzing created an open-ended framework for communication, using sounds, symbols and props to interact with the dolphins. The goal was to create a shared, primitive language that would allow dolphins and humans to ask for props, such as balls or scarves.

Divers demonstrated the system by pressing keys on a large submerged keyboard. Other humans would throw them the corresponding prop. In addition to being labeled with a symbol, each key was paired with a whistle that dolphins could mimic. A dolphin could ask for a toy either by pushing the key with her nose, or whistling.

Herzing’s study is the first of its kind. No one has tried to establish two-way communication in the wild.

“This is an authentic way to approach this, she’s not imposing herself on them,” said Lori Marino, the Emory University biologist who, with Hunter College psychologist Diana Reiss, pioneered dolphin self-recognition studies. “She’s cultivated a relationship with these dolphins over a very long time and it’s entirely on their terms. I think this is the future of working with dolphins.”

For each session, the researchers played with the dolphins for about half-an-hour, for a total of roughly 40 hours over the course of three years. They reported their findings of this pilot study in the December issue of Acta Astronautica.

Herzing’s team found that six dolphins, all young females, were interested in the game, and would come to play when the game was on. Young males were typically less social and less interested in humans. “This is when the females have a lot of play time,” Herzing said, “before they are busy being mothers.”

To Herzing’s surprise, some of her spotted dolphins recruited bottlenose dolphins, another species, to the game. This shows their natural curiosity, Herzing said. In the wild, dolphins communicate across cetacean species lines, coordinating hunting with other dolphins and even sharing babysitting duties.

Herzing found the study sessions were most successful when, before playing, the humans and dolphins swam together slowly and in synchrony, mimicked each other and made eye contact. These are signs of good etiquette among dolphins. Humans also signal their interest in someone with eye contact and similar body language. Perhaps these are universal — and extraterrestrial — signs of good manners.

Before we hope to understand extraterrestrials, then, perhaps we should practice with smart animals right here on Earth. Astronomer Laurance Doyle of the SETI Institute was struck by this thought at a recent conference.

“From the way the presenter was speaking, I thought he was going to announce that he had found a signal of extraterrestrial intelligence,” Doyle said. “We’ve been waiting for this for years, but I thought, ‘We’re not ready!’ We can’t even speak to the intelligent animals on Earth.”

NOTE: someone's been watching too much Star Trek IV. "Captain, there be whales here!"...Lon


Cyber war threat exaggerated claims security expert

BBC - The threat of cyber warfare is greatly exaggerated, according to a leading security expert.

Bruce Schneier claims that emotive rhetoric around the term does not match the reality.

He warned that using sensational phrases such as "cyber armageddon" only inflames the situation.

Mr Schneier, who is chief security officer for BT, is due to address the RSA security conference in San Francisco this week

Speaking ahead of the event, he told BBC News that there was a power struggle going on, involving a "battle of metaphors".

He suggested that the notion of a cyber war was based on several high-profile incidents from recent years.

They include blackouts in Brazil in 1998, attacks by China on Google in 2009 and the Stuxnet virus that attacked Iran's nuclear facilities.

He also pointed to the fallout from Wikileaks and the hacking of Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin's e-mail.

"What we are seeing is not cyber war but an increasing use of war-like tactics and that is what is confusing us.

"We don't have good definitions of what cyber war is, what it looks like and how to fight it," said Mr Schneier.
Sarah Palin Casualty of war? Attacks such as Sarah Palin's e-mail hack have been lumped into the debate

His point of view was backed by Howard Schmidt, cyber security co-ordinator for the White House.

"We really need to define this word because words do matter," said Mr Schmidt.

"Cyber war is a turbo metaphor that does not address the issues we are looking at like cyber espionage, cyber crime, identity theft, credit card fraud.

"When you look at the conflict environment - military to military - command and control is always part of the thing.

"Don't make it something that it is not," Mr Schmidt told a small group of reporters on the opening day of the conference.

A report last month by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development also concluded that the vast majority of hi-tech attacks, described as acts of cyber war, do not deserve the name.
Tanks and bombs

The issue is likely to receive a lot of attention at RSA this week as a number of panels seek to define what is and what is not cyber warfare.

"Stuxnet and the Google infiltration are not cyber war - who died?" asked Mr Schneier.

"We know what war looks like and it involves tanks and bombs.

"However all wars in the future will have a cyber space component.

"Just like we saw in the Iraqi war we [the US] used an air attack to soften up the country for a ground offensive.

"It is probably reasonable you will see a cyber attack to soften up the country for an air attack or ground offensive," he added.

Mr Schneier claimed that the heated rhetoric is driving policy in ways that might not be appropriate.

"The fear is that we are going to see an increased militarisation of the internet," he said.

Recently the FBI and Department of Defence squared off over who got to control defence in cyber space and the multimillion dollar budget that goes with the job.

Mr Schneier said that battle was won by the defence department.

He also claimed there was a worrying trend of politicians who try to introduce legislation as a way to deal with the issue as nothing short of knee-jerk politics.

"My worry is these ill thought-out bills will pass," said Mr Schneier.

Talk of drawing up the equivalent of a Geneva Convention for cyber space has been gaining attention.

The proposal was raised by international affairs think-tank, the EastWest Institute at a security conference in Munich last week.

Mr Schmidt said he is sceptical because he does not believe every country will sign up to an agreed set of norms or standards.

"I don't know that a treaty is going to solve anything at this juncture.

"Not everyone thinks about this unilaterally around the world. We can't do this by ourselves," he said.

Industry commentator Declan McCullagh, who is chief potlicial writer for online news site, believes the idea of doing nothing is untenable.

"Before we get to the stage of having to launch a cyber war, and that will eventually come, lets have a public discussion about what this involves," he said.

"A Geneva Convention for cyber war makes sense at least to start that discussion.

"What that would do is put certain types of attacks off the table like you are not going to target the enemy's hospitals or certain types of civilian systems that innocents depend on for their livelihood.

"I don't think everyone is going to respect it, and maybe the US won't respect it at times, but at least it starts the discussion and will probably have a positive effect," said Mr McCullagh.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the RSA event, which began as a purely technical cryptography conference and has evolved into a broader forum that includes issues of policy and governance as well as technology.


Killing one native owl species to save another?

seattleweekly - The phrase "Robbing Peter to pay Paul" comes to mind when considering a new plan by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to save the endangered Northern spotted owl.

That plan: shoot barred owls--a principal competitor of the spotted owl.

Though the USFWS policy hasn't officially been released yet, The Oregonian reports that it's likely to include a strategy to kill off between 1,200 and 1,500 barred owls from northern California through Oregon and Washington:

It's a wrenching decision that splits wildlife biologists and environmentalists. Killing one native animal to benefit another -- especially a "big, beautiful raptor, a fantastic bird," as one biologist puts it -- is such a leap that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service hired an environmental ethicist to guide its discussions.

Killing off invasive species is a common practice in wildlife management, but barred owls aren't invasive--they're native. And several environmental groups are arguing that killing them won't help the problem unless people are prepared to shoot the owls by the thousands every single year.

One biologist estimates the cost of such a plan to be $1 million annually.

Plus, by seemingly all accounts, the barred owl is simply a stronger and better-adapted species. It eats a wider variety of food and nests in a wider variety of places than the spotted owl.

Thus, the classic Darwinian argument comes into play:

"Population dynamics between two native species should not be artificially manipulated," says Blake Murden, wildlife and fisheries director for Port Blakely Tree Farms in Tumwater, Wash. "It's a generalist and a specialist," Murden says, "and invariably the generalist will win."

At the same time, there are experiments that suggest shooting the barred owls works in bringing back its spotted cousin.

A limited experiment on private California timberland showed spotted owls returned to their original nesting and roosting areas in every instance when barred owls were killed. In one case, a pair that hadn't been seen for more than two years reappeared just 10 days after a pair of barred owls were shot.

So the question comes down to whether a long, expensive, and morally objectionable plan to protect a rare and--many would argue--inferior species of bird is worth the effort--and really, if killing one native species is ever justified in preserving another.


Two huge holes spotted on the Sun

ibtimes - Japanese scientists have spotted two huge holes on the sun's magnetic field, and it has been observed that the holes look darker than other parts of the sun.

The holes, called coronal holes, are gateways for solar material and gas to spill out into space, according to The gaps in the sun's magnetic field make a hole through its atmosphere, letting gas out, NASA has said.

The new finding was made by Japan's Hinode sun-watching satellite which has been observing sun since 2006. "Japan's Hinode sun-watching satellite photographed the sun's two coronal holes on Feb. 1. In the image, one coronal hole appears near the top center of the sun while another one – a polar coronal hole – is visible near the bottom of the view", said in an article.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

"They told me it was time to leave..."

I received this amazing email last evening. Many details have been kept confidential in order to protect the identity of the writer and her family.

In 2005, my husband (who I'll refer to as 'Bill') and I purchased a house near Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Bill was stationed there and we figured that he would most likely stay since he was a wounded veteran from Operation Iraqi Freedom and had accepted a permanent position at headquarters. The house was built in the 1890s and had a Victorian style to it though there had been several renovations and additions. We have 3 children, all girls, who were aged 9, 11, and 15 at the time we bought the house. There was a lot of space for everybody including a large yard with woodland surrounding the property.

When Bill returned from rehab after suffering his injuries he didn't elaborate on how he sustained his injuries nor did he talk about his time in Iraq. We had been married for 12 years before he was deployed and I was content to the life as an Army spouse. When he returned, things had not really changed until we had settled in to the new home.

One morning I woke and noticed that Bill was not in bed. It was around 06:30 and he usually slept in until 07:15, then he would get up, eat breakfast and head to headquarters. I woke the girls for school and made my way downstairs to the kitchen to start making breakfast. When I walked into the kitchen I noticed Bill was seated at the table, arms down his side and staring straight ahead. It actually shocked me because I had never seen him like this. I sat across the table and looked directly at him. After a minute or so, he looked into my eyes and said "I need to tell you something."

He decided to stay home that day while I proceeded to feed my girls and get them off to school. Bill continued to sit at the table the entire time, not saying a word. I could tell that the girls were a bit confused since he did not speak to them.

When I returned home from dropping the girls off at school, Bill was sitting in the living room drinking a cup of coffee and reading the newspaper. I sat down on the sofa fearing that I was about to hear bad news. He looked at me and said "I think I'm going to be leaving soon".

I was in shock. "What exactly are you telling me?" I asked. He looked away for a second then looked back towards me "It has something to do with what happened in Mosul". (His division was deployed to northern Iraq near the city of Mosul). His hands and lips started to quiver "something happened that I can't explain. I wasn't able to report it to command because of the ramifications." He stood up and walked over to the sofa and sat down beside me. "The wounds I sustained were not from enemy ordinance - I was abducted by a group of people or something."

He explained that his platoon was on night patrol east of the city when a firefight began. Several of the soldiers went down requiring a retreat in order to get the wounded out of harm's way. At one point, Bill was alone covering several soldiers who helped others back towards the city. Things had quieted down and Bill was about to head back towards base when suddenly he was knocked off his feet by a tremendously loud 'thud'.

The next thing he remembered he was laying face up on a table in a spacious room with bright yellow lights all around. There were four beings that looked human but were dressed in thick dark wool-like robes. Each had a small circular cap on their heads that reflected the yellow light. One of the beings told Bill that he was to become 'one of them' and that 'he had no choice in the matter'. After that, he had no further memory with the beings.

When he became conscious, he was in a medical helicopter on his way to Baghdad. He was told he was being transported for medical treatment at another location. He was then given what he thought was a sedative. He woke sometime later in a dark room unable to move. After a time, a nurse come into the room and told him that he was in Germany and being treated for his wounds. She inject something into the IV then left and again the room went dark.

Bill thought from that time forward he was kept in a semi-conscious state for a long period of time, possibly for several weeks. About a month after sustaining his injuries, he was admitted to a hospital for rehab. This was the first time that he was able to see the extent of his injuries as well as an explanation of what he was facing.

Both of Bill's legs had deep long scars on the front and back. He was told that he lost a considerable amount of nerve and muscle tissue but that he would be able to recover much of his strength and sensation through rehabilitation. He inquired about surgery records but was told no surgery was performed. He then asked how the wounds were closed. The physician said that there was no description of sutures or skin grafting in the record. The physician agreed with Bill that this seemed very irregular. For over a year, Bill tried to get answers but was stonewalled by military and medical officials. When he returned home, I was surprised Bill was able to move around as well as he did even though the scars on his legs indicated significant trauma.

As Bill sat beside me, his voice started to shake "they will come back for me. I have no way of avoiding it." I was still awestruck by everything I had heard. I said "is there any way the medical staff at the fort can help you?" He looked away and said "it's beyond that point."

We continued to live a fairly normal life despite what Bill had told me. He never mentioned the incident again and I tried to forget it. As time went by, I assumed Bill has suffered some form of battlefield stress disorder though he maintained a busy and productive schedule at home and at work.

One warm evening in July 2007 Bill left us. He had been working in the yard when all of a sudden my youngest girl let out a horrific scream. I ran out the back door into the yard and witnessed Bill's lifeless body laying near the poplar tree. He had taken a pocket knife and drawn it across his throat. It was so abrupt and unexpected.

Bill had stated that he did not want a military funeral and wanted to be cremated. After a coroner's inquiry it was determined that Bill had taken his own life.

Last year, I was cleaning out Bill's clothes and personal effects when I discovered an envelope in a foot locker that he kept in the garage. I pull out and read the single sheet of paper, it read - "They told me it was time to leave. I'm sorry though I'm sure you'll understand." No. I don't understand. KS

Fortean / Alternative News: Search Beam From UFO, Bigfoot Howls Follow Up and Singularity 2045

Photo of similar beam from a 2010 sighting

Black UFO Shoots Light Beam to Ground

MUFON CMS - Tennessee - 01-14-11: I had just returned home from a little late night shopping at Wal-Mart around 1:30 AM. I was getting settled in and ready for bed, and had just come out of the bathroom from brushing my teeth.

As I walked from the bathroom down the stairs to my bedroom, I heard this extremely loud buzzing/humming, almost grinding sound coming from outside that was so loud the windows of my house were rattling.

Curious as to what it was and expecting to open the door to see a helicopter flying too low or a low flying jet passing over, I opened the door to look outside, only to see something I couldn't have ever imagined in my wildest dreams.

Peering out from the front door of my house facing south, directly in front of my point of view, there was a large (guesstimating 150 ft. in diameter) metallic, solid black sphere hovering about 150 yards from where I was standing and maybe 150 - 200 feet in the air.

Directly in the dead center of the sphere was a blue-white sort of laser-like beam spread out from the craft, and rotating back and forth and up and down very slowly as if it was searching for something, and as I was standing there this beam passed directly over me.

I didn't feel any heat, or pain from it, I was only slightly blinded for a split second... but this was well after I'd gotten a good solid 20 - 30 second view of the object.

The sound emanating from this object was this intense humming, grinding, almost like the sound made when you run over a tree root with a lawnmower, or when a construction worker is using a pile-drive minus the chipping sound, or when someone presses down on an object too hard with a grinder, but consistent and continuous, and again, loud enough that the sound was rattling my 2 story house's storm windows.

I'm shocked it didn't wake up the whole neighborhood.

After watching for a good 20 - 30 seconds, I wanted to document it somehow, so I ran into the house to grab my iPhone with the hopes that the object was low and close enough that the resolution on my phone wouldn't have trouble capturing the object, as it usually does anything from a distance at night.

Here's where things get even weirder. The entire time I was in the house to grab my phone was all of 15 seconds. Mind you, when I came outside at first the object was not moving, just hovering.

Within that span of 15 seconds I was inside, I came back outside to find that the object was gone from its original spot, but I could still clearly hear it.

Thinking that it had to be nearby, I looked around, and then ran (as fast as I could in house shoes) around to the back of the house to find that the object had traveled at least 2 miles away, and all I could see was the faint remnant of the beam, still moving as if it was searching or scanning for something, before the object disappeared behind the ridge line.

I didn't bother trying to film, I knew it was too far away for me to have any chance of capturing. Here's where it gets even more odd. As I'm standing watching it disappear behind the ridge line, I hear another loud sound of a craft, only this one is familiar. I turn around to see 3 black helicopters in formation, flying very low, and hauling ass, with only their spotlights on facing directly in front of them.

They followed the exact same direction I saw the craft travel. Now, I have witnessed strange lights I couldn't explain in the sky before, I have even had one UFO experience in particular that altered my whole perception of how a viewed physics, reality, religion, and what I perceived as possible and impossible, but this... this was different.

With all of those other sightings I got a sense of excitement, wonder, and even at times warmth and comfort. What I felt when I saw this object was an almost sickening sense of fear, discomfort, and dread.

With all the other sightings I WANTED to see it again, I was excited to have seen them. This thing... I wished I hadn't seen it, and it had me so uneasy I had a lot of trouble NOT picturing it when I was trying to sleep.

Everytime I got the image in my head, and remembered that sound it made, it sent chills up my spine.

I'm asking the UFO community, anyone who reads this who has seen this object whether in person or in some kind of video they've seen to share their experience with me, as I'm hoping to find some answers as to why or even what this thing could have been.

Thank you for your time, and keep watching the skies!

Thanks to Tammy for the heads up!


Follow Up: Bigfoot Howls

The following is a response to a previous post - Fortean / Alternative News: Bigfoot Reports and Updates

Listening to the Bigfoot howls the first one is very faint at best the second one with out a doubt I have heard that one myself... My parents live up in Placerville Foothills of the Sierras here in Northern California....We had BFRO come out to my parents one weekend a few years back along with Kathy Moskowits Strain and her now husband Bob Strain... I showed them the tree breaks I had found which they thought were excellent and the sounds we had heard... Late in the night we blasted some sound recordings they brought and got a return call... Kathy looked at us with a big smile and said is that what you have heard.. I told her yes it is... She smiled and said yup you have one or more that are in the area...

Until you hear it yourself in the mountains or woods you can't get a true appreciation or feel for a Bigfoot... Every time I hear someone laugh or say there is no such thing.. I tell them I would love to see you way out in the middle of the forest especially at night and hear a howl... I guarantee they will change their tune along with their underwear....

Here is the link to the report I initially filed with BFRO....


Atlantic raft expedition update

telegraph - At the age of 84, Anthony Smith is crossing the Atlantic on a raft. This week his crew battle with a broken rudder, and enjoy life atop an ocean of food chains.

To be on a raft at sea is to be on a snooker table whose frame rests on a bouncy castle. The structure stays happily intact, but the actual angle at any moment is the castle's choice. As for the poor balls, they go wherever gravity dispatches them, be they a desired pen, a pair of specs, a pan of food or the mere human in pursuit.

Unfortunately it is only the four of us who can grab a passing handhold. The pen, specs, food and whatever are only halted when some other thing gets in their way, whether mast, cabin, water barrel or circumferential netting.

The human balls change their colour according to circumstance. A black period definitely ensued when I realised a pernicious pharmacy had sold me a stack of hearing aid batteries all empty of energy. From now on, I will live more with my own thoughts than those expressed by others. Further blackness ensued when the toilet roll, neatly encased within several plastic bags, managed to acquire water donated by a passing wave.

Of course, there are better times too. Sunset and sunrise are always a joy, whether pink or blue or just suffused with yellow. Reds are the most common. The sun is the dominant feature of our days, though at night a zillion stars try to outdo in their numbers the single globe that highlights day.

As expected, there seem to be few fellow travellers on these waters. A single cruise liner has been spotted; a few aircraft have strobed their passage through the sky; and a gathering of dolphins once graced the water ahead before departing, sad perhaps that we had no great bow wave with which to impel their bodies into extra bursts of speed.

No whales as yet, and it might therefore seem that the ocean is a lifeless place.

Not a bit of it. We placed a plankton net in our rear, waited five minutes, and then hauled in a cornucopia of living things. There were little shrimp-like copepods and amphipods, each paddling so busily until warmth, I assume, got the better of them. There were Volvox lookalikes, round balls of little creatures fused together to make a sphere of life rather than a separated quantity of what books like to call animalcules. Undulating past them were the smallest of jellyfish, less than a millimetre in diameter, but precise replicas of their bigger brethren we may see when swimming nervously among them or treading between dead giants washed up along the shore.

An ocean, in short, is alive with food chains. The smallest, perhaps mere eggs or larvae, are eaten by those a trifle larger. These are then consumed by creatures higher up the ladder, and so on, until major animals are doing all the eating. It is a world on its own down there, beneath our raft, beneath the turbulence, and whose apparent lifelessness is nothing of the kind.

All of this was forgotten when our rudder broke last week. A steel pinion snapped and its attached marine ply then broke, half of it to float away. Tragedy? Yes, but not without a happy remedy.

My three crew members jury-rigged a replacement, more of a steering oar than a rudder, but in fact the four daggerboards suddenly proved their worth.

More like tabletops with us than any weapon, these have been constructed in ancient Peruvian fashion near the four corners of our craft. We immediately discovered, by lowering one or two of them, that we could steer effortlessly in the required direction.

At the moment we are heading more or less south-west to gain advantage of the trade winds which will take us towards our destination on the ocean's other side. Our snooker platform is therefore doing as it should, even if the balls sometimes go merrily elsewhere, whatever their colour and the time of day.

That is the nature of the craft with which we are voyaging so contentedly. Being on a raft is amazingly pleasing, whatever the turbulence.


2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal

On Feb. 15, 1965, a diffident but self-possessed high school student named Raymond Kurzweil appeared as a guest on a game show called I've Got a Secret. He was introduced by the host, Steve Allen, then he played a short musical composition on a piano. The idea was that Kurzweil was hiding an unusual fact and the panelists — they included a comedian and a former Miss America — had to guess what it was.

On the show (see the clip on YouTube), the beauty queen did a good job of grilling Kurzweil, but the comedian got the win: the music was composed by a computer. Kurzweil got $200. (See TIME's photo-essay "Cyberdyne's Real Robot.")

Kurzweil then demonstrated the computer, which he built himself — a desk-size affair with loudly clacking relays, hooked up to a typewriter. The panelists were pretty blasé about it; they were more impressed by Kurzweil's age than by anything he'd actually done. They were ready to move on to Mrs. Chester Loney of Rough and Ready, Calif., whose secret was that she'd been President Lyndon Johnson's first-grade teacher.

But Kurzweil would spend much of the rest of his career working out what his demonstration meant. Creating a work of art is one of those activities we reserve for humans and humans only. It's an act of self-expression; you're not supposed to be able to do it if you don't have a self. To see creativity, the exclusive domain of humans, usurped by a computer built by a 17-year-old is to watch a line blur that cannot be unblurred, the line between organic intelligence and artificial intelligence.

That was Kurzweil's real secret, and back in 1965 nobody guessed it. Maybe not even him, not yet. But now, 46 years later, Kurzweil believes that we're approaching a moment when computers will become intelligent, and not just intelligent but more intelligent than humans. When that happens, humanity — our bodies, our minds, our civilization — will be completely and irreversibly transformed. He believes that this moment is not only inevitable but imminent. According to his calculations, the end of human civilization as we know it is about 35 years away. Continue reading at 2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal
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