Making Unique Observations in a Very Cluttered World

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Greece cuts benefits to 200,000 people, some of whom were dead -

Greece cuts benefits to 200,000 people, some of whom were dead - 

Greece has stopped various benefits, including pensions, to 200,000 people who lied to get their monthly cheques or were in fact dead, a Greek Labour Ministry official said on Wednesday.

The number is roughly 2 per cent of the Greek population.

Debt-laden Athens discovered the fraud after beginning basic data cross-checks and means-testing, under pressure from its international lenders to cut its deficits.

The government terminated payments to families that continued to receive the pensions of their dead seniors. It also stopped benefits to wealthy recipients who had posed as poor to become eligible.

“They were caught during the inquiry and the state is reclaiming the money they have illegally taken,” the Labour Ministry official said on condition of anonymity.

The cuts, implemented gradually since September last year, will generate savings of up to 800 million euros ($1.06 billion) annually, the official said.

Greece has already slashed pensions by an average of 25 per cent to balance the books of its ailing state-run social security system, outraging pensioners and fuelling deep discontent with the EU/IMF bailout’s austerity policies.

With nearly one-quarter of the 11 million population retired, pension payments are a major burden on state coffers.

Greece’s generous welfare state and bloated public sector have been blamed as root causes behind a debt load that is about 1.6 times the country’s economic output.

Efforts to shore up the pension system are being hampered, however, by austerity-fuelled unemployment which has climbed to a record level of nearly 22 per cent.


Second diner in the span of two months collapsing during a meal at the Heart Attack Grill and rushed to the hospital -

Second diner in the span of two months collapsing during a meal at the Heart Attack Grill and rushed to the hospital - 

RoadFish.com men's lifestyle and finance magazine was fairly appalled to learn of the second diner in the span of two months collapsing during a meal at the Heart Attack Grill and being rushed to the hospital. RoadFish.com hopes that these back-to-back incidents will spark awareness in people to take good care of their health, and evaluate what they are putting into their bodies. RoadFish.com believes that you can't put a price tag on a healthy diet, and that good health, wealth, and happiness go hand in hand.

There is a sign at the Heart Attack Grill that issues the warning, "This Establishment is Bad for Your Health." Items on the menu include burgers with names such as the "Triple" and "Quadruple Bypass Burger," and lard-cooked "Flatliner French Fries." The quadruple bypass burger has even been named by the Guinness Book of World Records as the most caloric sandwich in the world, coming in at 10,000 calories for the 4-patty burger topped with layers of cheese and bacon.

Andrew Chow of Reuters reports that on Saturday evening, a female diner in her 40s collapsed during her meal at the Heart Attack Grill. The customer was reportedly eating a "Double Bypass Burger," smoking cigarettes, and drinking an alcoholic beverage. Chow's article suggests that it's unlikely the woman, who is now recovering from the emergency, will be able to sue the establishment to pay for her medical bills for several reasons. The cause of her collapse remains unknown, and additionally the assumption of risk is a factor in this situation, since the customer knowingly entered into an activity when she was aware of the dangers and possibility of injury.

RoadFish.com's Senior staff writer is quoted saying, "I absolutely think that a person's health is their own responsibility, period. And health is not just one decision, it's a series of choices about the way you eat, exercise, and take care of your body. This restaurant happens to serve enough calories in one meal to feed a small army, but it's the customers' choice to be there eating it."

Online publication LosAngelesGrubStreet.com, who covers restaurant and dining scene stories, reported that the restaurant's owner, Joe Basso, did not sound terribly disturbed over the customer's medical emergency on Saturday. Basso reportedly is quoted saying that the restaurant is not liable for medical-related issues that diners may suffer while at the establishment due to the warnings that the restaurant posts about the food being unhealthy to consume. He is quoted saying, "Unlike cigarettes, I have had warning labels since Day 1 when we opened in 2005 telling people how bad our food is for you. I think that skirts any liability we might have." The Heart Attack Grill is apparently also known for treating customers who weigh more than 350 to a free meal.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2012/04/25/prweb9440251.DTL

Kulula Airlines is offering a free ticket for a man's fourth wife if the entire family flies together -

Kulula Airlines is offering a free ticket for a man's fourth wife if the entire family flies together - 

A South African airline came up with a novel promotion this week for male passengers traveling with multiple wives.
Kulula Airlines, based in Johannesburg, is offering a free ticket for a man's fourth wife if the entire family flies together between the city and Cape Town.
The ad reads, "Not only will you get a great deal on kulula.com flights for your first three wives, but your fourth wife will fly free, mahala, on the house."
The stunt, which runs until April 30, coincides with South African president Jacob Zuma's marriage to his fourth wife over the weekend. Zuma has been married six times in total, but one of his wives committed suicide in 2000, and he divorced his second in 1998.
Men looking to take advantage of the conjugal offer simply have to present a pre-bought ticket, proof of marriage and ID at the Kulula counter, and the fourth wife's ticket will be refunded.
The promotion reads, "Inspired by regular VIP travelers with sizable spousal entourages, the offer is open to all fourth wives when the family travels together on the Jo'burg to Cape Town route."
In 2010, the airline used one of its planes -- dubbed "Flying 101" -- and painted the exterior to show where various parts, such as the black box, were located.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2012/04/25/south-african-airline-promotion-reportedly-gives-free-ticket-to-travel-with/?test=latestnews

G-spot found: Researcher locates the elusive pleasure zone - "bluish grapelike compositions" that are erectile tissue -

G-spot found: Researcher locates the elusive pleasure zone - "bluish grapelike compositions" that are erectile tissue - 

Within the confines of science and the bedroom, the G-spot is something of a holy grail.

For decades, researchers have debated its existence in medical journals, while Lotharios have implied with a wink they already made the discovery.

But none went so far as Adam Ostrzenski, a retired doctor and researcher who travelled to Poland this past September to conduct a “stratum by stratum anterior vaginal wall dissection on an 83-year-old cadaver.”

His study, published in the May issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine, appears to confirm the anatomical existence of the alleged pleasure zone. He will return to Poland in May to verify his findings in female cadavers of other age groups.

“It is my conviction that it’s not something that this 83-year-old lady had . . . and the rest of you guys don’t,” he said from his home in St. Petersburg, Fla., where he is the director of the Institute of Gynecology.

Theories about the G-spot have long been controversial. In the March issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine, a research team reported that there’s no “strong and consistent evidence” to confirm its anatomical existence, although there are “reliable reports and anecdotal testimonials” about the highly sensitive area.

“Nobody believed it could be identified. I was a skeptic myself. But I said, ‘I know this is going to be the location,’ ” Ostrzenski said.

Once the woman’s autopsy was completed, Ostrzenski began his dissection at the department of forensics medicine at Warsaw Medical University.

After seven hours of careful work, he found the G-spot in the front wall of the vagina, under five layers of connective tissue and muscle, 16.5 millimetres from the upper part of the urethra. It was in an area not usually accessed during gynecological surgery — one reason no one discovered it before, he said.

In prose that differs considerably from Maxim and Cosmopolitan, he describes the spot as “bluish grapelike compositions” inside a sac located between the inferior pubocervical fascia and the superior dorsal perineal membrane.

Ostrzenski says the grape shape is characteristic of an “erectile body” that can expand. The G-spot was 8.1 millimetres long inside the sac, but when Ostrzenski removed it, it extended to 33 millimetres. “This extension tells you this structure is designed for contractions and expansion,” he said.

He says the sac was the only erectile tissue he could identify. He couldn’t take a tissue sample to confirm because he didn’t have permission from the ethical committee. There were other roadblocks, too.

“Indeed, the subject was not in the position to communicate, but the existing scientific literature guided me,” he explained in an email.

As part of his study, he searched through existing studies from the past century and found his was the first description of the co-ordinates and size of the G-spot.

Researchers aren’t permitted to do this kind of forensic dissections in the U.S. or Canada, but it’s allowed in many European and South American countries, he said. Poland is ideal for Ostrzenski because he has relatives and old friends to visit there while he waits. The research trips are a financial risk, with many factors outside his control; cadavers only become available in cases of sudden death.

Ostrzenski conducted the landmark dissection last September, and now fields questions from all over the world. This is the quickest any of his research has gone to print.

Depending on the publication, the questions can be quite intimate.

“The men call me and say, ‘In a practical way, what do I have to do today with my wife?’ ”


US Feds to ban children from farm chores... -

US Feds to ban children from farm chores... - 

A proposal from the Obama administration to prevent children from doing farm chores has drawn plenty of criticism from rural-district members of Congress. But now it’s attracting barbs from farm kids themselves.

The Department of Labor is poised to put the finishing touches on a rule that would apply child-labor laws to children working on family farms, prohibiting them from performing a list of jobs on their own families’ land.

Under the rules, children under 18 could no longer work “in the storing, marketing and transporting of farm product raw materials.”

“Prohibited places of employment,” a Department press release read, “would include country grain elevators, grain bins, silos, feed lots, stockyards, livestock exchanges and livestock auctions.”

The new regulations, first proposed August 31 by Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, would also revoke the government’s approval of safety training and certification taught by independent groups like 4-H and FFA, replacing them instead with a 90-hour federal government training course.

Rossie Blinson, a 21-year-old college student from Buis Creek, N.C., told The Daily Caller that the federal government’s plan will do far more harm than good.

“The main concern I have is that it would prevent kids from doing 4-H and FFA projects if they’re not at their parents’ house,” said Blinson.

“I started showing sheep when I was four years old. I started with cattle around 8. It’s been very important. I learned a lot of responsibility being a farm kid.”

In Kansas, Cherokee County Farm Bureau president Jeff Clark was out in the field — literally on a tractor — when TheDC reached him. He said if Solis’s regulations are implemented, farming families’ labor losses from their children will only be part of the problem.

“What would be more of a blow,” he said, “is not teaching our kids the values of working on a farm.”

The Environmental Protection Agency reports that the average age of the American farmer is now over 50.

“Losing that work-ethic — it’s so hard to pick this up later in life,” Clark said. “There’s other ways to learn how to farm, but it’s so hard. You can learn so much more working on the farm when you’re 12, 13, 14 years old.”

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2012/04/25/rural-kids-parents-angry-about-labor-dept-rule-banning-farm-chores/

Woman Spills Yogurt on President Barack Obama in Boulder -

Woman Spills Yogurt on President Barack Obama in Boulder - 

The president is in Boulder, Colorado giving a campaign-style speech at the University of Colorado. Reportedly, on his way to the speech, he decided to stop for a bite at "The Sink ... a divey kind of place that seems more about the beer than the food," according to the the pool report. The report continues:  

While greeting people outside, a young woman spilled yogurt on the president. It appeared to hit his pants. The president wiped himself off with a towel and made a wry comment about the Secret Service, but pooler couldn't hear his exact words.
He did say to the woman, "Getting yogurt on the president, you've got a story to tell." 
She said, "I'm very embarrassed."

Read more -

More Greek men had penis extension surgery in 2010 than 25 countries in the developed world -

More Greek men had penis extension surgery in 2010 than 25 countries in the developed world - 

More Greek men had penis extension surgery in 2010, in proportion to the population, than their counterparts in 25 countries in the developed world examined in a survey by the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.

The report, which compared data from other European Union countries including Italy, France, Spain and Germany, as well as the USA, Britain, Russia, China and Japan, found that South Koreans underwent the most aesthetic surgery, proportional to the country’s population, than any other of the 25 countries, with most opting for eyelid surgery to acquire a more “western look.”

Greece was second in the chart overall and first as regards to penis extensions.

Read more -