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February 03, 2003

He takes fatal OD as Internet pals watch
New York Daily News | Submitted by: Puppy Rapist
"I told u I was hardcore." Those were the last coherent words Brandon Vedas, 21, typed into the computer in his Phoenix bedroom as he showed off for Internet pals watching on a Web cam by swallowing more and more prescription drugs... His mother found him at 1 p.m. the next day sprawled on his bed. The tech whiz's computer had shut down and locked itself automatically, so it wasn't until more than a week later that the family found out his death had had witnesses."

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Couple lost son on Sept. 11 lost niece on Shuttle
Fox News | Submitted by: anonymous
"Astronaut Laurel Clark's death on the space shuttle Columbia was the second sudden and very public tragedy to hit Doug and Betty Haviland in 17 months. On Sept. 11, 2001, television had first brought tragedy. The Havilands were watching after the World Trade Center absorbed the impact of a terrorist-piloted jetliner, burned, then collapsed with their 41-year-old son Timothy inside."

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Man sues police over the Valentine card they sent
London Telegraph | Submitted by: Boat6float
"Williams, 26, will go to the High Court next month to seek a judicial review of the actions of Ken Jones, the chief constable of Sussex. He is seeking damages, arguing that the card was malicious and caused him distress." But wait, he is a car thief and criminal who has racked up 17 convictions since 1990.

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Prison demands their 25 cent overpayment back
Stuff NZ | Submitted by: wingnut
"On payday 8 November 2000 you were overpaid by 25 cents... "This was due to you receiving your annual leave paid in advance and when you returned to normal pay it was not enough to cover your deductions."Would you please give your permission for the 25 cents to be recovered from your pay." That's $.25 NZ"

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Aussie space spiders perish, a nation weeps
Sydney Morning Herald | Submitted by: Nick
"The man behind Melbourne's spiders-in-space project choked back tears today as he recalled hearing the chilling news the space shuttle Columbia had disintegrated. "Obviously the results of the experiment aren't relevant to anybody today," an emotional Mr Manning told AAP." How many more spiders must die?

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Insects as instruments of biological warfare?
Voice of America | Submitted by: comesolito
"The use of insects as agents of warfare is not a new idea. In the Biblical story of the Exodus, one of the plagues visited upon the Egyptians was a horde of locusts. In a short-lived program in the mid-20th century, the U.S. Army reared 100 million yellow fever mosquitoes each week for possible use as a biological weapon against enemy troops."

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For-profit Moon mission slated for October
National Geographic | Submitted by: comesolito
"Earthlings can send personal items to the lunar surface at the rate of US $2,500 per gram. In addition, written messages up the 300 characters long can be etched onto a moon-bound disk for U.S. $16.95. For U.S. $13 more, consumers can send a text message of 9,600 characters... The U.S. government agencies granted TransOrbital permission to launch their moon shoot in September 2002, but only after the company agreed not to harm the lunar environment and to preserve historical sites."

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Remains of cyclops creature found on Crete
CNN | Submitted by: comesolito
"Researchers on the southern Greek island of Crete have unearthed the fossilized tusk, teeth and bones of a Deinotherium Gigantisimum, a fearsome elephant-like creature that might have given rise to ancient legends of one eyed cyclops monsters."

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Win an election: Control the voting machines
Common Dreams | Submitted by: Vomit
"Former conservative radio talk-show host and now Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel was the head of, and continues to own part interest in, the company that owns the company that installed, programmed, and largely ran the voting machines that were used by most of the citizens... votes were counted by computer controlled voting machines put in place by the company affiliated with Hagel. Built by that company. Programmed by that company."

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More Nude Protesters!
Midia Independente | Submitted by: Crazy Quagga
But not PETA this time. "It started when a Mapuche woman who was attending the WSF[World Social Forum] and staying at the international youth camp was arrested with charges of "obscene acts" for bathing nude in a river. Activists saw this and organized over 400 people to protest by nonviolently taking their clothes off in solidarity."

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Spiders like fat chicks
ABC News | Submitted by: Crazy Quagga
Male long-jawed spiders go looking for the heaviest honeys, who are also the most likely to go cannibalistic on the honeymoon. "The joke we tell is for males they mate with anything that moves and a few things that don't move just to make sure you don't miss anything. But this (study) shows... they factor more things into mating than we thought."

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Job from hell
New York Post | Submitted by: wingnut
"In order to be promoted to manager, and earn a salary of $24,000 to $30,000 a year, former employees said they had to have five new trainees working under them - but if their new trainees didn't make at least $40 a day in sales, they had to pay them $40 out of pocket. "I made $14,000 in 2001 for working 80 hours a week, but spent about $20,000 in order to get the job done," said ex-employee Cary Bruce, 25, who worked at the company for 21/2 years and quit in March 2002." Real management material here.

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Putting indigent souls to rest in Cleveland's Potter's Field
Cleveland Plain Dealer | Submitted by: wingnut
"The caskets are made of flakeboard, a siding material made of wood scraps, sawdust and glue. A white cardboard wrap held in place by black plastic straps covers the tops and sides of the caskets. The name of the deceased is scrawled on the cardboard... It's the rare body that cannot be identified. It's not nice to tell them someone died, but we've had families say, "Oh, my God, I had no idea they were still in Cleveland."

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Man drove into woman because she's black
St. Louis Today | Submitted by: Any Mouse
After hitting a black woman waiting for a bus, "Bad" Steven Johnson sat calmly in his car with Jesus until the police arrived. He used several racial slurs, police said. And he claimed to be doing the work of God.

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Pimp of the Year
Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Submitted by: Dirty Sammy
"I think having a pimp convention in and of itself is totally inappropriate, no matter where it is," said former federal prosecutor Janis Gordon, now a DeKalb State Court judge. "I think it is particularly inappropriate to have it in Atlanta when Atlanta has taken such steps to eradicate child prostitution." These people seem unable to distinguish between real pimps and poseur players.

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Human remains from shuttle found
Space.com | Submitted by: yidele
"In Hemphill, near the Louisiana state line, hospital employee Mike Gibbs reported finding what appeared to be a charred torso, thigh bone and skull on a rural road near what appeared to be other debris. Billy Smith, an emergency coordinator for three East Texas counties, confirmed the find... "I wouldn't want anybody seeing what I saw... It was pretty gruesome." On a farm, also in Sabine County, two boys found a charred human leg... "From the hip to the foot, it's all there, scorched from the fire."

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Valium turns 40
Observer | Submitted by: Ann Onymous
Happy birthday. Try not to overdose, okay? "They were infinitely safer than barbiturates, which was what people had used to treat anxiety before, and which carried a great risk of fatal overdose. So we were enthusiastic. I myself took enormous quantities to see if there was any toxic effects, but my wife said I was just the same."

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Fear killed these chickens
News Corporation | Submitted by: Taleya
"Nearly 2,000 chickens on a southern China farm died from fright or were suffocated by other terrified birds when teenagers set off firecrackers for Chinese New Year... He rushed out to check his 5,000 chickens and found them terrified and crowded into a corner of the farm furthest from the noise....Some 2,000 of the chickens had already died of fright or from being crushed or suffocated by other chickens."

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