Extreme weather continues unabated in California

Helpless citizens scramble in mass exodus to the out-of-doors


By Beth Johnson, Staff Reporter


LOS ANGELES — Sunny skies and high temperatures continue to strengthen, forcing hundreds of thousands of Californians to go outside and enjoy the outdoors.


All of Los Angeles and the surrounding region will be inundated with pleasant, comfortable temperatures and blue, cloudless skies during the month of September, according to the National Weather Crisis Center.


The sunshine began earlier this year, and is expected to continue for the remainder of 2008.


The unrelenting sunny weather is causing widespread evacuation, with waves of home-owners fleeing the indoors in search of parks, beaches, and patios.


The uninterrupted sunshine, which Californians have witnessed almost every day this year, is expected to swathe the state with warmth and light, and is even expected to pour over onto neighbouring Nevada and Arizona.


The extreme sunshine led California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to issue an urgent appeal.


“My message to Californians in the projected impact area is this – wear sunblock, because over-exposure to the sun can cause freckles, tans – even burning.”


Evacuations in Los Angeles’ most sun-prone areas – home to about four million residents – are already underway.


California Lieutenant Governor John Garamendi told the Pundit Thursday that a mass mobilization was well underway.


“Buses are packed, traffic is deadlocked, and flights are delayed as helpless Californians scramble to find ways to deal with this extremely pleasant weather,” he said.


“Everyone is desperate to find a place to sit outdoors, a spot on the beach, a vacant camp site, or a sailboat to rent.”


City officials planned to re-route highway traffic and said fuelling stations would be placed on major roads to facilitate the outdoor exodus.


Forecasters said the sunny weather, which has left more than 400,000 people with glowing tans across the state, threatens to continue unabated into October and November.


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Harper vows to pull out of Afghanistan eventually

Voters shocked by bold announcement


By Sam Hagan, Staff Reporter

EDMONTON – Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced on Wednesday that his government plans to pull all troops out of Afghanistan eventually.


Coming in the heat of an election campaign, the announcement marks the boldest statement thus far on a major foreign policy issue announced by the Conservatives so far in this election.


“I don’t want to say we will pull out by a certain year, but I can say with certainty that the mission will end at some point,” Harper said during a federal election campaign stop in Edmonton.


“Our goal has to be to see some kind of progress, down the road, for improvement to happen in the future,” he said. “And with that timeframe in mind, we will plan for a complete withdraw,” he added.


The statement was clear indication that the Conservatives have no idea what to do about the troubled mission.


Candidates from other parties were quick to reply to the Conservative position.


“We’ve lost 97 Canadian soldiers already,” said New Democrat Party leader Jack Layton. “Eventually is not soon enough.”


Asked his when party’s believes an Afghanistan withdraw should take place, Layton replied, “Soon.”


Liberal leader Stephane Dion questioned the “eventually” deadline, stating forcefully before a press conference that the withdrawal needs to be “A little later.”


Some supporters have expressed surprise by Harper’s bold promise, but many believe that “eventually” is far enough down the road to have partially achieved some of the nebulous goals of the mission.


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Study shows kangaroo alcoholism on the rise

By Mondo Fernando, Staff Reporter


MELBOURNE – A new study released from the Australian Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration says kangaroos are drinking more heavily and more frequently than ever before.


The report surveyed thousands of kangaroos from Australia’s savannahs, prairies, and grasslands from January to June 2008. A staggering 72 percent said they’ve spent a night in the drunk-tank during in the last five years.


“Having drunken kangaroos hopping around the countryside is not only a public safety hazard, but also harmful to our tourism industry,” Carolyn Beaton of the Australian Wildlife Authority said, referring to a recent case where a kangaroo violently attacked a tourist while on safari.


With the Australian Federal Police imposing stricter penalties on bars that serve the fuzzy jumpers, many of the nation’s estimated 7500 alcoholic kangaroos are turning to other animals for alcohol.


Asked about the source of alcohol, 40 percent they got it from wombats or koalas, which aren’t subject to the same prohibition laws. About one in ten said they got it from a crocodile, one in 16 got it from a fellow kangaroo disguised as a human.


Roughly 4 percent admitted to brewing moonshine in their pouches.


“In far too many instances other animals directly enable kangaroos’ drinking – in essence encouraging them to risk their health and well-being,” said acting Surgeon General Steven K. Galson.


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Sudanese president charged for shoplifting, genocide

Marks first shoplifting charge by global court against a sitting head of state


By Mondo Fernando, Staff Reporter


President al-Bashir

President al-Bashir

THE HAGUE – The International Criminal Court filed two charges against Monday against Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, accusing him of shoplifting a chocolate bar and a pack of gum from a small store located near the Republican Palace in Khartoum.


“We take shoplifting very seriously at the ICC,” Chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo said in a statement after submitting his case to the judges.


“The international community has turned a blind eye towards Sudan long enough. We don’t need to wait until hundreds of snacks are stolen,” he told The Associated Press.


“Chocolates, gum, and other candies are at grave risk.”


But Al-Bashir’s ruling National Congress Party on Sunday warned of “more shoplifting to come” in Sudan if an arrest warrant is issued against the president, state TV reported.


In a subsequent ruling, al-Bashir was also charged with masterminding an effort to wipe out some 2.5 million people in Darfur with a campaign of murder, rape and deportation.


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Educated women have the best sex, better orgasms

Smart chicks found to have insatiable appetites to get their freak on


By Sam Hagan, Staff Reporter


Few think “orgasmic” when they look at a geeky graduate student wearing thick glasses and a baggy, tucked-in t-shirt. Yet a new study reports that university and graduate students often top the list of the lustfully libidinous, with many thesis-writing, library-going women expressing a rock-and-roll sexual appetite.


The study was funded by the National Women’s Health Institute, with the research conducted by the gentlemen at Texas State University’s Theta Sigma Chi between April 2007 and April 2008.


Women with basic reading skills are almost twice as likely to have an orgasm during sex as their illiterate counterparts, and a woman who can count to ten is much more likely to have that many orgasms, or so they would have us believe.


High school drop-outs were found to have sexual relations relatively frequently, but their enjoyment levels were comparatively low since a statistical majority of them were too stoned to enjoy sex, and living in their parents’ basements with their struggling musician boyfriends.


Among the study’s more alarming findings was that freshmen TSU girls are not as easy as their slutty little outfits would have us believe, a truth that runs contrary to all natural intuition and logic.


According to the report, “Women reaching for the highest degrees – in law, the medical sciences, or those pursuing a doctorate – have insatiable appetites to get their freak on, and enjoy smutty, porn-star-like, rotating-bed-with-leopard-pattern-sheets sex all night long.”


(To be sure, anyone who has set foot in a graduate residence or gone to a campus book reading will find this extremely difficult to believe.)


While some women, especially those studying divorce law or, say, diseases of the reproductive system, feel anything but sexy while buried under books at the library, many are glowing from their smug sense of intellectual superiority, and can’t control their lust for sexual indulgence and experimentation.


“Ever since I got my Masters degree, riding in the back of the bus has taken on a whole new level of excitement for me,” said Amy Lisgar (pictured right, centre), a recent graduate of TSU’s Lamar School of Technology.


Another young woman told the “researchers” of T.S. Chi that since the day she successfully defended her thesis, she has had an orgasm every time a heavy truck rolls past her apartment.


While these findings have largely been well-received, some have disparaged the academic integrity of the study, questioning the research methods employed by the misogynist, beer-pong-playing jocks of Theta Sigma Chi.


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Sour Grapes for Dummies — Summer wine tips for the rest of us

You don’t have to be a blue-blooded winologist to appreciate a good grape juice. This summer, ignore those wine snobs, and just go for some yummy and cheap plonk. The Pundit offers some tips for the average Joe in plain English.


If you are looking for a summer rouge that is both opulent and genuine, the romantic Viognier is an obedient wine with a contrapuntal harmony and a smooth eggy bouquet with low tanninosity.


If you like ze German Geschmack, Gewürztraminers are vigorously fragrant, fruit-forward, and accentuated with pungent zesty after-Schmackhaftigkeit. The bold saccharine overtones with a mélange of an elusive je ne sais quois tickle the taste buds like a million fireflies fluttering in the night. The Vinoptima Ormond Gewurztraminer (2004) is an aromatic New Zealand wine which, at the low price of $85.95, is perfect for an average Tuesday night dinner.


The Maison de Brunelle Pignon de Nouillé (2003), at the bargain basement price of only $89.90, balances a penetrating bon gôut with a nuanced bouquet not for the olfactorialy undiscriminating.


The little whites of Chablis are also très mode this summer. These playful wines offer a buoyant luminosity like a springbok soaring sylphlike over the Serengeti Savannah. An effervescent Asti can also satiate the Self on hot dry day.


For an evening with friends, a Tuscan Malvasia is singularly spicy with jaw-gnawing acidity reminiscent of guacamole. This invigorating variety, often blended with Fiano or Falaghina, brings an oily texture with restorative yumminess and palate-pleasing ego-transubstantiation.


The Chilean Toro Blanco del Castillo Paco Cabernet-Merlot (2007) is an energetic blend which offers a voluptuous array of earthy herbs and robust pith. This spicy wine spreads its legs throughout the tongue like a high-class whore, bleeding oaky flavours and mesmerizing the palate with its Andean notes. The bull’s blood aftertaste is the sine qua non of this original blend, giving this proprietary-labeled wine a unique complexity.


The pinot gris is a shy wine known for its versatility and fragility. It metaphorically recreates the felicitous enchantment of a summer breeze, and, unlike its more sober sisters Riesling and Muscat, this pinot exudes pétillant capriciousness.


If you’re looking for a self-actualizing wine that will elevate you to epistemic heights, why not consider a Sequoia Ridge Zinfandel (2006) from Napa Valley? This wine will nullify your nihilism with intriguing jammy, gardenia-esque bouquet and pronounced overtones of tunafish and just a hint of gorgonzola.

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FOX launches new TV Game show: “Are You Smarter than a Retard?”

By Sydney Hedley, Entertainment Editor

NEW YORK – How tough could this be? That’s what Fox reality show guru Mike Darnell thought when he first heard of the concept for a game show called “Are You Smarter than a Retard?”


But less than eight weeks after the idea was born, “Are You Smarter than a Retard?” premiered last week drawing a record 23 million viewers.


The breakaway new show promises to humiliate countless contestants with normal intelligence and make retards across the country feel smug.


Each episode pits a cast of mentally handicapped dummies, schizophrenics and mongoloids against regular adults trying to answer appallingly simple questions for big money.


Contestants try to answer skill-testing questions such as “Which way is up?” and “What color is an orange?” while real retards stand by to offer help. The results are frightening yet hilarious: During the premiere show, retards guffawed heartily from the sidelines as the contestant was unable to identify where on her body her head was located.


“The show is based on the shameful reality that in many cases the average Joe does not possess even the most basic knowledge of the world around them,” Darnell said speaking before journalists.


“Sad as this truth may be, it makes for a highly entertaining battle of dimwits.”


Contestants are allowed, at times, to “cheat” and sneak a peak in a dictionary which is provided for them. However, this option is often of limited value since many of the contestants don’t remember the order of the letters of the alphabet.


On last night’s show, contestant Dan Stillman was stumped on the question “What number comes after 2?” His inability to provide the correct answer cost him $50,000. Asked his reaction to the humiliating defeat, Stillman grumbled, “What do I look like, a rocket scientist?”


The show is expected to be very popular among Europeans given their well-known love for making fun of Americans.





Contestant testimony:

Jason Clem, 31

Waiter at Elway’s Restaurant

Leonard King, 92-year-old with dementia and paranoid schitzophrenia

Which way is up?

“This question really stumped me. When I first heard it, I knew this would blow my chances to win big. I decided to check the dictionary, but I ran out of time before finding where “u” was.”






Contestant testimony:

Julie Krantz, 45

Stay-at-home mother of three, with a diploma in accounting from DeVry

Alex Edison, Village Idiot

What country are you in?

“It seemed like a simple question, but you second-guess yourself…I was nervous and I panicked. I had never been on a TV show before, I was in the spotlight, it was really a struggle.”

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