Archive | October 4, 2013

Health Advice from 1500s: Stay Youthful By Sucking the Blood of the Young

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DERMATOLOGISTS HATE HIM FOR THIS ONE WEIRD OLD TRICK!

C’mon, don’t be a baby! The vein is “scarcely-opened.”

Via Ask the Past:

“There is a common and ancient opinion that certain prophetic women who are popularly called ‘screech-owls’ suck the blood of infants as a means, insofar as they can, of growing young again. Why shouldn’t our old people… likewise suck the blood of a youth? — a youth, I say who is willing, healthy, happy and temperate, whose blood is of the best but perhaps too abundant. They will suck, therefore, like leeches, an ounce or two from a scarcely-opened vein of the left arm; they will immediately take an equal amount of sugar and wine; they will do this when hungry and thirsty and when the moon is waxing. If they have difficulty digesting raw blood, let it first be cooked together with sugar; or let it be mixed with sugar and moderately distilled over hot water and then drunk.”

Marsilio Ficino, De vita libri tres (1489)

 

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Dickson Despommier Discusses Vertical Farming at TEDxWarwick 2013

Dickson Despommier talks about the advantages of vertical farming.

By the year 2050, nearly 80% of the earth’s population will reside in urban centers. Applying the most conservative estimates to current demographic trends, the human population will increase by about 3 billion people during the interim. An estimated 109 hectares of new land (about 20% more land than is represented by the country of Brazil) will be needed to grow enough food to feed them, if traditional farming practices continue as they are practiced today. At present, throughout the world, over 80% of the land that is suitable for raising crops is in use (sources: FAO and NASA). Historically, some 15% of that has been laid waste by poor management practices. What can be done to avoid this impending disaster?

via The Vertical Farm Project

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Conspiracy Classic: ‘Silent Weapons for Quiet Wars’

m-YwnrjrR9EAc0i5RhiPczQSilent Weapons for Quiet Wars is a classic text of the conspiracy theorist subculture: A document that lays out step-by-step a plan to conquer the world through propaganda, currency devaluation, economic shock and constant warfare, among other things. It was supposedly recovered from a surplus copy machine by a Boeing Aircraft employee, and while it was initially reprinted in William Cooper’s Behold a Pale Horse, no one is sure who wrote it (although many seem certain that it is former Federal prisoner Hartford van Dyke).In the thirty-plus years since the document was discovered, researchers have attributed it to satanists, the Illuminati, the Bilderberg Group, the New World Order and other secretive organizations. Undoubtedly, its mysterious origin adds to its sinister appeal.

If you’re not familiar with the document, you can read it here.

 

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Journalist Raymond Bonner on How Telecommunications Company Helped Government Spy On Him

Not-SpyingJournalist Raymond Bonner has good reason to doubt the government’s reassurances that only terrorists need worry about its snooping powers.

Via ProPublica:

In 2004, my telephone records as well as those of another New York Times reporter and two reporters from the Washington Post, were obtained by federal agents assigned to investigate a leak of classified information. What happened next says a lot about what happens when the government’s privacy protections collide with the day-to-day realities of global surveillance.

The story begins in 2003 when I wrote an article about the killing of two American teachers in West Papua, a remote region of Indonesia where Freeport-McMoRan operates one of the world’s largest copper and gold mines. The Indonesian government and Freeport blamed the killings on a separatist group, the Free Papua Movement, which had been fighting a low-level guerrilla war for several decades.

I opened my article with this sentence: “Bush Administration officials have determined that Indonesian soldiers carried out a deadly ambush that killed two American teachers.”

I also reported that two FBI agents had travelled to Indonesia to assist in the inquiry and quoted a “senior administration official” as saying there “was no question there was a military involvement.’’

The story prompted a leak investigation.

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Zapping Brain With Low Currents of Electricity Increases Compliance With Social Norms

a-clockwork-orange-475864lI don’t know about you, but the threat alone of “transcranial direct current stimulation” is probably enough to make me “follow the fairness norm.”

Via EurekAlert:

By means of a technique called “transcranial direct current stimulation,” which sends weak and painless electric currents through the skull, the excitability of specific brain regions can be modulated. During this experiment, the scientists used this technique to increase or decrease neural activity at the front of the brain, in the right lateral prefrontal cortex. Christian Ruff, Professor of Neuroeconomics and Decision Neuroscience at the University of Zurich, said: “We discovered that the decision to follow the fairness norm, whether voluntarily or under threat of sanctions, can be directly influenced by neural stimulation in the prefrontal cortex.”

Keep reading.

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Navy Yard Gunman Had Complained He Was Victim of Ultra-Low Frequency Attacks

Aaron Alexis had complained to police that he was being targeted by disruptive mind control technologies:

FBI Releases Images from Navy Yard ShootingVia Kennebec Journal:

Washington Navy Yard gunman Aaron Alexis left a note saying he was driven to kill by months of bombardment with extremely low-frequency radio waves, the FBI said Wednesday in a disclosure that explains the phrase he etched on his shotgun: “My ELF Weapon!”

Alexis did not target particular individuals during the Sept. 16 attack in which he killed 12 people, and there is no indication the shooting stemmed from any workplace dispute, said Valerie Parlave, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Washington field office. Instead, authorities said, his behavior in the weeks before the shooting and evidence recovered from his hotel room, backpack and other belongings reveal a man increasingly in the throes of paranoia and delusions.

“Ultra-low frequency attack is what I’ve been subject to for the last 3 months, and to be perfectly honest that is what has driven me to this,” read an electronic document agents recovered after the shooting.

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Grant Morrison’s ‘Doom Patrol’: Mr. Nobody: a Savior, a Monster, an Act of Sacrilege, Dada

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One of the major players in the realm of comic books has been the United Kingdom, and one of its most important periods occurred in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s with the British Invasion of American comics. This period saw the influx of British creators, most of whom initially worked for DC Comics, creators such as Neil Gaiman, Alan Moore, Warren Ellis, Simon Bisley, Dave McKean, Peter Milligan, and Scottish writer Grant Morrison. It is Morrison and his work that we will be sampling in this post, specifically, the brilliant and explosive introduction of Mr. Nobody - “the spirit of the twenty-first century” – which occurred in Doom Patrol #26. The issue was published in 1989 during the beginning stages of Morrison’s epic run in the series (#19-63).
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Chimps Easily Beat Humans In Complex Numeric Memory Tests

chimpsVia the Guardian, powerful mental abilities we ironically have lost through evolution:

In a landmark test of short-term memory conducted in public in 2007, the young chimp Ayumu demonstrated astonishing powers of recall, easily beating his human competitors, who had been in training for months.

“We’ve concluded through the cognitive tests that chimps have extraordinary memories,” Matsuzawa says. “They can grasp things at a glance. As a human, you will never be a match.”

Why do the latter have such vastly superior working memories? As humans evolved and acquired new skills – notably the ability to use language to communicate and collaborate –they lost others they once shared with their common simian ancestors.

The institute’s researchers are trying to find how far Ayumu can go before he falters. In the most recent tests, the number of digits [shown for a split second] has been increased from 1-9 to 1-19.

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