BartCop Entertainment Archives - Thursday, 8 December, 2016


8 December, 2016

(Updated Daily)

[1897 days in a row]


Recommended Reading

from Bruce

Rick Perlstein: Meet the Press (American Spectator)
The hustlers, hucksters, hacks, and cowards who helped elect Donald Trump.

Mark Morford: Meanwhile, Trump intensifies groping of America (SF Gate)
We have gone from a deeply civilized, hugely successful, beautifully historic presidential administration marked by tremendous grace and calm wisdom, to a bullying sh-t-show run by a bloviated, tiny-brained reality TV man-child who doesn't give a damn about what his army of confused, poorly educated protest voters might have wanted, but very much adores all those violent, misogynist white supremacist sociopaths who would gladly lead us all into the pits of hell.

Timothy Snyder: A Yale history professor's powerful, 20-point guide to defending democracy under a Trump presidency (Quartz)
5. Be calm when the unthinkable arrives. When the terrorist attack comes, remember that all authoritarians at all times either await or plan such events in order to consolidate power. Think of the Reichstag fire. The sudden disaster that requires the end of the balance of power, the end of opposition parties, and so on, is the oldest trick in the Hitlerian book. Don't fall for it.

Jonathan Jones: Martin Creed's bleak anti-carol should be Christmas No 1 (Guardian)
With his song "It's You," Turner-winning artist Martin Creed has made the perfect antidote to the commercialised positivity of Christmas.

Martin Creed: "It's You" (Vimeo)
Anti-Christmas Carol.

Arwa Mahdawi: "Cookie monsters: why your browsing history could mean rip-off prices" (Guardian)
By collecting data on how desperate we are to buy and how much we can afford to pay, companies are finding sophisticated new ways to squeeze extra cash from unwitting shoppers.

Jordan Weissmann: United Airlines Wants to Do to Flying What Republicans Want to Do to Health Care (Slate)
Starting early next year, United Airlines plans to begin charging fliers for the privilege of stowing carry-on luggage in their plane's overhead bin-thus slapping yet another irritating fee onto a basic amenity that travelers have long taken for granted.

David Bruce's Amazon Author Page

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David Bruce has over 80 Kindle books on



Throwback Thursday Trivia Question of the Day

Identify this TV series.


Send your answer to Marty

Trivia Question from Yesterday

This American pop music duo began their career together under the name "Caesar and Cleo". By what name(s) are they better known?

       Sonny & Cher                                                      Source

Sonny & Cher were an American pop music duo, actors, singers and entertainers made up of husband-and-wife Sonny and Cher Bono in the 1960s and 1970s. The couple started their career in the mid-1960s as R&B backing singers for record producer Phil Spector.

Cherilyn Sarkisian first met Salvatore Bono in a Los Angeles coffee shop in November 1962, when she was sixteen. Eleven years her senior, Bono was working for record producer Phil Spector at Gold Star Studios in Hollywood. Through Bono, Cher started as a session singer, and sang backup on several of Spector's classic recordings, including "Be My Baby" by the Ronettes, "You've Lost That Loving Feeling" by The Righteous Brothers and Darlene Love's "A Fine, Fine Boy". In the composition by Darlene Love, the listener can clearly hear Cher and Sonny close to the mic (along with Love, who recorded her own backing vocals).

With Bono continuing to write, arrange and produce the songs, the couple's first incarnation was as the duo "Caesar and Cleo". They received little attention, despite releasing some singles in 1964: "The Letter", with Vault Records, and "The Letter", "Do You Wanna Dance" and "Love Is Strange", with Reprise Records.        Source

Mark. was first and correct with:
   American pop duo Caesar and Cleo, huh. A wild guess: Sonny and Cher.

Alan J answered:
   Sonny & Cher.

David of Moon Valley wrote:
   oh jeez...sonny and cher?...really?! Hokey Smokes.....

gene said:
   Sonny & Cher

Jim from CA, retired to ID, responded:
   Sonny & Cher

Barbara, my roommate from the Pepperdine days, replied:
   The answer is Sonny and Cher.

Deborah said:
   That's Sonny and Cher. I enjoyed their music and TV show, back in the day. I'm still a Cher fan; she's timeless and (thanks to plastic surgery) ageless.
  Freeze warning in effect with rain arriving later today. Yes, it's indoor activities season in NorCal.

zorch wrote:
   Sonny and Cher.

John I from Hawai`i says,
   "Sonny and Cher."

Daniel in The City replied:
   Sonny and Cher

Adam answered:
   I'm just gonna guess Sonny & Cher.

Joe S     responded:
   Oh that's an easy one. Everyone knows it's Marvin and Mavis Smiley. Such classics, so bigly.

Randall took the day off.

DJ Useo took the day off.

mj took the day off.

MAM     took the day off.

Marian took the day off.

Dale of Diamond Springs, Norcali took the day off.

BttbBob   has returned to semi-retired status.

  December 8 Birthdays - Celebrities Born December 8 | Famous Birthdays

Sally has retired.




Middle Class Political Economist

Now a Blogger-Columnist at US News and World Reports "Economic Intelligence"



Reader Suggestion

Michelle in AZ

Thousands of snow geese die in Montana after landing on contaminated water | US news | The Guardian

Where is the world's most 'godless' city? | Cities | The Guardian

How a network led by the billionaire Koch brothers is riding the Trump wave | US news | The Guardian

Democrats Drop A Bombshell Report That Exposes Trump's Planned Devious War On Seniors

Before You Drink Glögg, You Should Probably Know What It Is | The Huffington Post

Congressional Republicans sucker punch American steel workers, scrapping 'Buy America' provision

Imagine the headlines if Obama rewarded Carrier for shipping 1,250 jobs abroad

More Patients Required To Pay Their Share Of Treatment Upfront : Shots - Health News : NPR

Weather Channel To Don't Use Our Content To Mislead On Climate Change : The Two-Way : NPR

The Earth Itself Is Now Accelerating The Demise Of The Human Species

Appointment Of Pruitt To Run EPA Sounds Death Knell For Obama's Environmental Legacy

Why The Pentagon Classifies Much Of What It's Doing, It's Covering Fraud
     such a surprise

Electoral College should pick McCain/Biden!

Members of Trump's Inner Circle Are Advising Him to Privatize Native American Reservations

LGBT Center To Open Its Doors Across From Mormon Temple In Utah | The Huffington Post

Australia Wants To Save The Great Barrier Reef While Building A Massive Coal Mine | The Huffington Post

US Border Patrol uses desert as 'weapon' to kill thousands of migrants, report says | US news | The Guardian

Why Steve Bannon wants to destroy secularism | Daniel Steinmetz-Jenkins | Opinion | The Guardian

Only 20% of US adults have information overload, but those who do feel burden | Technology | The Guardian

Thanks, Michelle!



David E Suggests

Insane Homes

15 Insane Homes From Around the World (Pics)


Thanks, Dave!



Reader Comment

Lincoln Cathedral

Hey Marty,

I found this one at the Lincoln Cathedral while walking around in Lincoln, UK a week or so's the second station of the cross inside the great cathedral itself....never has anything ever been so profound to me inside a church quite like this one....
and Thank You for keeping me simultaneously informed and entertained day after day! I Really Appreciate what you do, for all of the days in a row and time you have put in doing this! Great Job!



Thanks, David!



Bonus Links

Jeannie the Teed-Off Temp

What I Learned Binge-Watching Steve Bannon's Documentaries - POLITICO Magazine

Why Is The Daily Caller Using Images Of Black People With Obama Poster In Story About Food Stamps?

The guide to being a better bystander -

Will the House Freedom Caucus rescue Obamacare (without meaning to) through sheer intransigence? -

Serious Changes Possible for National Security Policies on Climate Change - Scientific American

Here Are 9 Things Trump's National Security Adviser Pick Actually Thinks About Islam - BuzzFeed News

Bill Maher Loses It Over Donald Trump And The 'Slow-Moving Right-Wing Coup' | The Huffington Post

Sundance to Help Facilitate Inauguration Demonstrations at Festival | Hollywood Reporter

Tina Fey, David Letterman Interview: Parenting Anxiety, Alec Baldwin | Hollywood Reporter



Team Coco


Conan in Berlin: Conan Meets Refugees At Tempelhof



from Marc Perkel

Patriot Act

Patriot Act NSA Spying Unconstitutional Section 215 National Security Letters Must End

My name is Marc Perkel and I have decided to announce that I will not comply with the so called "Patriot Act" laws requiring me to disclose information about my customers. If I receive a national security letter I will immediately photograph it, post it online everywhere I can, and then make a video of me burning it. I will then await my arrest. If you want to put me in jail then come get me mother fucker.

Come Get Me Mother Fucker | Putting and end to NSA government Spying





Selected Readings

from that Mad Cat, JD








Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music


In The Chaos Household

Last Night

Decades has started showing the original Rowan & Martin Laugh-In at midnight on the East Coast (9pm on the left coast). Tonight's episode held up quite well.

Tonight, Thursday:

CBS opens the night with a RERUN 'Big Bang Theory', followed by a FRESH 'The Great Indoors', then a FRESH 'Mom', followed by a FRESH 'Life In Pieces', then a FRESH 'Pure Genius'.
Scheduled on a FRESH Stephen Colbert are Octavia Spencer and Travis Scott.
Scheduled on a FRESH James Corden, OBE, are Stephen Fry and Lukas Graham.

NBC fills the night with LIVE 'Thursday Night Football', then pads the left coast with local crap and maybe an old 'Dateline'.
Scheduled on a FRESH Jimmy Fallon are Robert De Niro and Pharrell Williams.
Scheduled on a FRESH Seth Meyers are Taraji P. Henson, Lola Kirke, Bret Baier, and Abe Cunningham.
Scheduled on a FRESH Carson 'The Scab' Daly are Damien Chazelle, Black Lips, and Sean Teale.

ABC starts the night with 'Toy Story That Time Forgot', followed by 'Shrek The Halls', then a FRESH 'The Great American Baking Show', followed by a FRESH 'Notorious'.
Scheduled on a FRESH Jimmy Kimmel are Jennifer Aniston, Tom Ford, and Frenship.

The CW offers a FRESH 'DC's Legends Of Tomorrow', followed by a FRESH 'Supernatural'.

Faux has the FRESH 'Taraji's White Hot Holidays', followed by a FRESH 'Pitch'.

MY has an old 'The X-Files', followed by another old 'The X-Files'.

A&E has 'The First 48', followed by a FRESH 'The First 48', then a FRESH 'Nightwatch', followed by a FRESH 'Gangland Undercover'.

AMC offers the movie 'Inside Man', followed by the movie 'The Italian Job'.

BBC  -   
 [6:00AM]    STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION - SEASON 6 - EPISODE 11-Chain of Command (Part 2)
 [7:00AM]    STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION - SEASON 6 - EPISODE 12-Ship in a Bottle
 [9:00AM]    DOCTOR WHO - SEASON 4 - EPISODE 6-The Doctor's Daughter
 [10:00AM]    DOCTOR WHO - SEASON 4 - EPISODE 8-Silence in the Library-Part 1.
 [11:00AM]    DOCTOR WHO - SEASON 4 - EPISODE 9-Forest of the Dead-Part 2 .
 [1:00PM]    STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION - SEASON 6 - EPISODE 16-Birthright (Part 1)
 [2:00PM]    STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION - SEASON 6 - EPISODE 17-Birthright (Part 2)
 [8:00PM]    THE BOURNE IDENTITY (2002)
 [10:30PM]    THE BOURNE IDENTITY (2002)
 [3:00AM]    STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION - SEASON 6 - EPISODE 16-Birthright (Part 1)
 [4:00AM]    STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION - SEASON 6 - EPISODE 17-Birthright (Part 2)

Bravo has 'Million Dollar Listing LA', another 'Million Dollar Listing LA', followed by a FRESH 'Million Dollar Listing LA', then a FRESH 'Top Chef', followed by a FRESH 'Watch What Happens Live'.

Comedy Central has 'Futurama', another 'Futurama', 'Tosh.0', another 'Tosh.0', 'Amy Schumer: Mostly Sex Stuff', and 'Trevor Noah: African American'.
Scheduled on a FRESH The Daily Show is DJ Khaled.
Scheduled on a FRESH @Midnight are Ali Siddiq, Nate Fernald, and Erica Rhodes.

FX has the movie 'Ice Age: Continental Drift', followed by the movie 'Hotel Transylvania'.

History has 'Pawn Stars', another 'Pawn Stars', followed by a FRESH 'Alone', then another FRESH 'Alone', followed by a FRESH 'The Selection: Special Operations Experiment'.

IFC  -   
 [8:00PM]    INCEPTION
 [11:15PM]    INCEPTION
 [5:30AM]    STAN AGAINST EVIL-Dig Me Up, Dig Me Down    (ALL TIMES EST)

Sundance  -   
 [6:35AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-His Two Right Arms
 [7:10AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-The Good-Time News
 [7:45AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-What Is Mary Richards Really Like?
 [8:20AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-Who's in Charge Here?
 [8:55AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-Enter Rhoda's Parents
 [9:30AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-It's Whether You Win or Lose
 [10:05AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-Rhoda, the Beautiful
 [10:40AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-Just Around the Corner
 [11:15AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-But Seriously, Folks
 [11:50AM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-Farmer Ted and the News
 [12:25PM]    The Mary Tyler Moore Show-Have I Found a Guy for You
 [1:00PM]    Outrageous Fortune
 [3:00PM]    Law & Order-Sisters of Mercy
 [4:00PM]    Law & Order-Silence
 [5:00PM]    Law & Order-Working Stiff
 [6:00PM]    Law & Order-Prince of Darkness
 [7:00PM]    Law & Order-Consultation
 [8:00PM]    Law & Order-Right to Counsel
 [9:00PM]    Law & Order-Night and Fog
 [10:01PM]    Law & Order-Promises to Keep
 [11:02PM]    Law & Order-Hubris
 [12:03AM]    Law & Order-Whose Monkey Is It Anyway
 [1:04AM]    Law & Order-Sunday in the Park With Jorge
 [2:05AM]    Rectify-Pineapples in Paris
 [3:07AM]    Rectify-Physics
 [4:09AM]    Outrageous Fortune    (ALL TIMES EST)

SyFy has the movie 'Resident Evil: Afterlife', followed by the movie 'Maleficent'.

Scheduled on a FRESH Conan are T.J. Miller, Anna Camp, and the Lemon Twigs.

 [6:45 AM]      The Mad Genius (1931)
 [8:15 AM]      Dance, Girl, Dance (1940)
 [10:00 AM]      Look For The Silver Lining (1949)
 [12:00 PM]      Give a Girl a Break (1953)
 [1:30 PM]      Broadway Melody Of 1940 (1940)
 [3:15 PM]      Everything I Have Is Yours (1952)
 [5:00 PM]      Limelight (1952)
 [7:30 PM]      MGM Parade Show #25 (1955)
 [8:00 PM]      The Glass Menagerie (1966)
 [10:15 PM]      Period of Adjustment (1962)
 [12:15 AM]      The Glass Menagerie (1966)
 [2:30 AM]      A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
 [4:45 AM]      21 Days (1940)     (ALL TIMES EST)

Friday   -  12/09/16

TCM spends most of the night with Myrna Loy
 [6:00 AM]      Broadway Babies (1929)
 [7:30 AM]      Playing Around (1930)
 [8:45 AM]      The Widow From Chicago (1930)
 [10:00 AM]      The Naughty Flirt (1931)
 [11:00 AM]      The Animal Kingdom (1932)
 [12:30 PM]      Emma (1932)
 [2:00 PM]      The Mask Of Fu Manchu (1932)
 [3:15 PM]      New Morals For Old (1932)
 [4:30 PM]      Rebound (1932)
 [6:00 PM]      The Wet Parade (1932)
 [8:00 PM]      Love Me Tonight (1932)
 [9:15 PM]      The Prizefighter and the Lady (1933)
 [11:00 PM]      Night Flight (1933)
 [12:30 AM]      Thirteen Women (1932)
 [1:45 AM]      Scarlet River (1933)
 [2:45 AM]      Penthouse (1933)
 [4:30 AM]      The Barbarian (1933)

USA has a FRESH 'Falling Water'.

Antenna TV - Johnny Carson (from Oct. 8, 1981) - Martin Mull, Peter Billingsley, and James Woods.

Bounce TV

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Actors Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling place their handprints in cement during a ceremony in the forecourt of the TCL Chinese theatre in Hollywood, California U.S., December 7, 2016.
Photo by Mario Anzuoni


The Sideshow - by Avedon Carol


Washington Sites


A public interest group urged U.S. officials on Wednesday to free up Washington landmarks for thousands of people planning protests around the Jan. 20 inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump.

The Washington-based Partnership for Civil Justice Fund said the National Park Service had handed over control of sites such as the Lincoln Memorial to the private committee overseeing Republican Trump's inauguration.

The move had left at least a dozen protest groups without prime venues, a violation of Americans' constitutional rights, fund officials said.

The National Park Service "has done a massive land grab inhibiting all those who want to exercise their right to free speech," Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, a co-founder of the fund, said at a news conference.

National Park Service spokesman Mike Litterst said agency rules in place since 2008 give an inaugural committee preferential access to some public areas along Pennsylvania Avenue, the National Mall and surrounding land.



People carry flags and effigies during a protest prior to the season opening of the famous Milan 'La Scala' opera house with the original two-act version of the opera 'Madame Butterfly' by Giacomo Puccini, in Milan, Dec. 7, 2016.
Photo by Matteo Bazzi


Asian Countries Dominate

PISA Survey

Asian countries dominated the top places in a key survey released Tuesday of high-school skills, but the report criticised science teaching in many countries.

The PISA survey of 15-year-olds in 72 countries and economies found that the quality of science lessons was more important than equipment or even staffing levels.

Where once Finland led the way in educational excellence, Singapore is now the example to other countries, the report said.

The five top-performing countries in the PISA tests, which were carried out in 2015, were Singapore, Japan, Estonia, Taiwan and Finland.

Canada was seventh on the list, well ahead of the United States, which ranked 25th among OECD countries.

PISA Survey


Newhead News


Court Filing

Chelsea Manning

A military prison psychologist has refused to recommend that Chelsea Manning's gender be changed to female in her Army service record, complicating the transgender soldier's quest to wear a feminine hairstyle at the men's prison where she is serving a 35-year sentence for leaking classified information, according to a court document.

Manning's American Civil Liberties Union lawyers disclosed the decision in a filing Monday in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The document says the chief of the Mental Health Division at the Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, prison declined Manning's Nov. 4 request to update her gender in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System. The filing says Manning made the request "based on her having achieved stability in her female gender."

The document doesn't say why psychologist Ellen Galloway refused. Army spokesman Wayne Hall declined to comment Tuesday, citing medical privacy laws.

The court document filed Monday is a status report from both sides on Manning's lawsuit seeking a court order allowing her to wear her hair longer than 2 inches, the maximum length prison standards allow for men.

In the report, Manning's lawyers say a new Army policy enabling soldiers to officially change genders does not provide a way for Manning to do so unless she is released, so that she can obtain the required documents, or receives transgender surgery.

Chelsea Manning


A view of a mural at a street in Beirut, Lebanon, Dec. 7, 2016. The mural is depicting evolution from artisit's point of view, from an ape to a man carrying an explosive belt and an assault rifle.
Photo by Wael Hamzeh


To Re-Open Marijuana Dispensaries Immediately


A judge on Wednesday cleared the way for Montana's medical marijuana dispensaries to re-open after a three-month hiatus by ruling that a drafting error in a voter-approved ballot initiative should not delay the measure's implementation.

District Judge James Reynolds of Helena ruled the error that pushed back the effective date of a key portion of the initiative until July 1 should not keep very ill patients from accessing the drug immediately.

"The folks that are maybe the most in need are the least able to provide, to grow their own," Reynolds said in making his ruling. "I think speed is more important than niceties."

The initiative approved by voters last month struck down a law passed by the Montana Legislature in 2011 that limited medical marijuana providers to three patients each. The three-patient limit took effect Aug. 31 after a five-year court battle, forcing the closure of medical marijuana dispensaries across the state and leaving thousands of registered users without providers.

The authors of the ballot measure, the Montana Cannabis Industry Association, had intended for the three-patient limit to be struck down immediately upon passage of the initiative.



Digby's Hullabaloo


Thousands Of Geese Die


Thousands of migrating geese have died after taking refuge from a snowstorm in toxic mine waters in the western United States, mine officials have said.

As many as 10,000 snow geese descended on the abandoned open Berkeley Pit in Butte, Montana on November 28 and since then several thousand have perished, said Mark Thompson, environmental affairs manager for Montana Resources, which jointly manages the pit with the Atlantic Richfield Company.

Thompson told the Montana Standard Tuesday that mine workers tried to prevent the huge flock from landing on the water -- which contains sulfuric acid and heavy metals -- by using noise makers, spotlights and other methods but failed to scare them all off.

He described the pit's 700-acre (280-hectare) lake as "white with birds" when the flock landed on the water.

Since then, area residents have found dead birds in parking lots, in front of a casino, on the roadside and outside town. Thousands more are estimated to have died in the lake according to drone and flyover footage, officials say.



A blind woman visits the art exhibition 'YTURRALDE: Cartographies of the sublime' at the University of Valencia, Spain, Dec. 7, 2016.
Photo by Kai Foersterling


Forged Arbitration Agreements Are Legally Binding

Wells Fargo

When you sign up for a Wells Fargo account, you're required to sign an arbitration "agreement" giving up your right to sue the company, and requiring you to have your case heard by an arbitrator paid for by -- and dependent on -- Wells Fargo instead.

At least 2,000,000 times, Wells Fargo employees were pressured -- on pain of termination and lifelong blacklisting from the finance industry -- into opening fake accounts in their customers' names. These accounts existed solely to accrue fees, which, in many cases, made their customers overdrawn (or simply generated suspicious seeming queries against their credit records), and when that happened, their credit records were dinged, which can cost you a job, a loan -- even your house if you can't refinance your mortgage.

Now those millions of defrauded people are trying to sue Wells, and Wells is arguing that the binding arbitration agreements on accounts that you didn't open are also binding -- that by having your signature forged on a fraudulent application, you waived your right to sue.

What's worse? Courts are buying it.

In dismissing one large case seeking class-action status in California, a federal judge ruled last year that it was not "wholly groundless" that customers could be forced to arbitrate over accounts they had never agreed to. That case is now being settled, according to legal filings.

Wells Fargo


The Eiffel Tower is seen from the Montparnasse Tower, as Paris suffers a pollution spike, Dec. 7, 2016. Paris' Police authority is again cracking down on the city's rocketing air pollution with a 24-hour traffic-regulating scheme that aims to halve the day's emissions from road vehicles.
Photo by Francois Mori


Ice-Free Past


The massive Greenland ice sheet has melted away at least once during the last 1.4 million years, according to a study published on Wednesday, raising fears that manmade climate change could provoke dangerous sea levels.

Bedrock samples retrieved through more than three kilometres (two miles) of ice reveal for the first time that the island's surface was exposed directly to the atmosphere in the not-so-distant past.

It may have been a single period of up to 280,000 years, or several shorter ones, researchers reported in the journal Nature.

But either way the evidence shows that the island was largely ice-free.

"Unfortunately, this makes the Greenland ice sheet look highly unstable," said lead author Joerg Schaefer, a palaeoclimatologist at Columbia University in New York.



A visitor and an employee dressed as Snegurochka (Snow Maiden), the granddaughter of Ded Moroz (Russian equivalent of Santa Claus), pose for a picture inside an upside down house, constructed as an attraction for local residents and tourists and located at the Royev Ruchey Park of Flora and Fauna in the suburbs of Krasnoyarsk, Russia, Dec. 7, 2016.
Photo by Ilya Naymushin


Passport Robot

New Zealand

A New Zealand man of Asian descent had his passport photograph rejected when facial recognition software mistakenly registered his eyes as being closed.

Richard Lee's attempt to renew his passport was blocked after he submitted the picture to an online passport photo checker run by New Zealand's department of internal affairs.

The automated system told the 22-year-old engineering student the photo was invalid because his eyes were closed, even though they were clearly open, according to a copy of the notification posted on social media site Facebook.

Up to 20 percent of passport photos submitted online are rejected for various reasons, an Internal Affairs spokesman said.

"The most common error is a subject's eyes being closed and that was the generic error message sent in this case," he said.

New Zealand


The Christmas market at the Gendarmen Markt square is illuminated with hundreds of lights in Berlin, Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016.
Photo by Markus Schreiber


All Human-Made Objects on Earth

30 Trillion Tons

It's safe to say that humans have accumulated a lot of stuff over the years. Scientists recently discovered that all objects on Earth created by people adds up to an astoundingly large figure.

How large? According to a new study, the estimated mass of every bit of urban and rural infrastructure, every vehicle and machine, every device and construction on land, sea and in the air, every piece of technology, and all the garbage in landfills, is approximately 30 million tons.

All of these objects are collectively known as Earth's "technosphere." Distributed evenly over the planet's surface, the technosphere would translate into about 110 pounds (50 kilograms) for every 11 square feet (1 square meter), the researchers said.

The appearance of the technosphere is linked to a newly-described geological age called the Anthropocene - a period defined by humanity's reshaping of Earth - which extends from the 1950s to the present.

Unlike Earth's biosphere - the parts of the planet that sustain life - the technosphere does a poor job of recycling the materials that make it up. Instead of breaking down and refueling growth, elements of the technosphere simply take up more space in landfills.

30 Trillion Tons



Migrating Cranes flock to the Hula Lake conservation area, north of the Sea of Galilee, northern Israel, Dec. 7, 2016. About 42,500 cranes are in Hula Lake conservation area today. More than half a billion birds of some 400 different species pass through the Jordan Valley to Africa and go back to Europe during the year.
Photo by Ariel Schalit



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