‘Starkly showcasing the US government officials’ misplaced priorities when it comes to human rights, whistleblower and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Bradley Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison. The information that Bradley gave to the public exposed the unjust detainment of innocent people at Guantanamo Bay, the true human cost of our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and forever changed investigative journalism. There is no evidence that anyone was harmed as a result of the information exposed.Join Amnesty International and the Bradley Manning Support Network in signing a petition to President Obama, demanding that Bradley Manning be given clemency and be released immediately. After having been tortured and abused at Quantico prison for 9 months where he was held in solitary confinement against the recommendations of every health professional who assessed him, and after having already spent more than 1190 days in prison more than 3 years confinement before the trial even began, Bradley Manning should be set free! Uphold your promise Obama: protect whistleblowers!’ Sign the petition and show your support! (Bradley Manning Support Network).
‘The pinwheel-like drawing above is nothing but black and white lines. When you look at it the right way, though, something strange and beautiful happens: it begins to flicker. You may think it’s just a regular old optical illusion at first, but actually, you’re looking at your very own brain waves.
To see the optical illusion takes a little bit of work. Look at the pinwheel shape and then stare at a spot that’s just a few inches away from it. When the pinwheel is in your peripheral vision, you should start to see the center flicker, kind of like a really bright star does. The effect also works as an afterimage. So once you find a spot that gets the flicker going, stare at it for about a minute and then look at a blank white wall. You’ll see the inverse image of the pinwheel, flicker and all.’ (Gizmodo).
‘Officials, including NSA Director Keith Alexander, have assured the public that the government knows the scope of the damage, but two separate sources briefed on the matter told NBC News that the NSA has been unable to determine how many documents he took and what they are.’ (NBC Investigations).
‘Birds cannot read road signs, but they know that some roads have higher speed limits than others. They will take off further away from an approaching car on a faster road than on a slower road – regardless of the speed of the car.’ (New Scientist).
‘Could a blood test predict whether a person is at risk of committing suicide? For the first time, a set of proteins in the blood have been linked to suicidal behaviour. People who commit suicide appear to share a number of biological traits, regardless of any underlying conditions. This hints that suicidal behaviour may be a distinct disorder.
To investigate, Alexander Niculescu of Indiana University in Indianapolis and colleagues collected blood from the cadavers of nine men who had bipolar disorder and suicidal tendencies, and nine with bipolar but no suicidal thoughts, and compared levels of all the genes expressed in their blood.
Four genes were expressed at significantly higher levels in the blood of people who had been suicidal. Some proteins that these genes code for are known to be involved in stress and cell death.’ (New Scientist).
‘For some, it is a short mental step from “my end is imminent” to “the end of everything is imminent.” Call it apocalyptic narcissism.’ (The Chronicle Review)
Pianist and Composer Dies at 79: ‘Cedar Walton, a pianist who distinguished himself as both an accompanist and a soloist, and who wrote some of the most enduring compositions in modern jazz while a member of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers in the early 1960s, died on Monday at his home in Brooklyn. He was 79.’ (NYTimes.com obituary)
Colin Robinson’s advice for the 81% of Americans who believe they have a book in them: Don’t let it out!. (The Guardian)