Sunday, October 14, 2018

This Makes Me Ill

Officer Who Killed 12 Year Old Tamir Rice REHIRED

The Young Turks Oct 14, 2018  3 min. 38. sec
If It's Just A 'Few Bad Apples'...Why Are You REHIRING THEM?

The Pallas Cat

Pallas’s Cat: The Original Grumpy Cat

Animalogic Oct 12, 2018  8 min. 6 sec.
Pallas’ Cats may look like cute and lazy house cats, but don’t let that fool you.

Dark Compartments

Miyu Kojima’s room box of a home where a solitary death occurred in a bathtub. A rapid change in body temperature while taking a bath can lead to a stroke or heart failure, especially among elderly people. (Naoko Kawamura)

Messy miniature room boxes built to shed light on solitary deaths

The Asahi Shimbun  by NAOKO KAWAMURA/ Staff Writer  October 14, 2018

One miniature room model is cluttered with garbage strewn across furniture. Another tiny room box contains layers of trash and bottles of urine.

The miniatures symbolize solitary death sites where the bodies of occupants are often not found for extended periods.

Miyu Kojima produces such room boxes from memory.

The 26-year-old works for a Tokyo-based cleaning service provider that specializes in sorting and disposing of belongings left by the deceased.

A room box of a trash hoarder’s apartment room, produced by Miyu Kojima (Naoko Kawamura)
Kojima said she creates the miniature rooms, each of them based loosely on a number of cases, not to shock people but to generate feelings of compassion.

“I would like many people to know the reality,” she said. “I want people to stop thinking that solitary deaths have nothing to do with them. I hope people will think about what they can do to prevent solitary deaths.”

Over the past few decades, an increasing number of elderly people, and even relatively young single people, have been dying alone at their homes. Their bodies are often left to decompose because there are no people around to check up on the occupants.

Kojima said clients, who are usually relatives of the deceased, often express shame or embarrassment over the messy conditions of the rooms.

Snack packages, empty beverage cans, magazines, and plastic bottles and bags containing urine are among the items covering the floor of a room of a hoarder. Amid the trash was a resume for job hunting. (Naoko Kawamura)

She said she hopes the miniatures will show people that dirty or cluttered homes are “nothing special.”

“I don’t want people to be worried, thinking their (relatives’) homes are the only ones that are so messy,” she said.

Kojima said that hoarding, the compulsion to collect things excessively and the refusal to discard belongings, can afflict anyone.

“What if we lose someone close, or have psychological stress, and don’t feel like doing anything for days?” she said. “What if the situation gets out of hand before anyone else notices?”

Miyu Kojima produced this room box to show that clutter is nothing special. (Naoko Kawamura)  

Her room boxes are based on such themes as “solitary death” and “trash-hoarders’ room.”

At her work sites, she has seen piles of notices left by delivery drivers whose calls at the front door went unanswered. At one home, the body of the lone occupant was not discovered for months.

Kojima creates the miniatures by herself at the company’s office after finishing her cleanup work. For the room boxes, and based on her memory, she stains wallpaper bought from a hardware store and uses photocopiers to downsize packages of real products.

It takes about a month for Kojima to complete one room box.

She first publicly displayed her work at an industrial fair for funeral and burial-related businesses in 2016.

A resident's body was found on futon a few months after the solitary death. (Naoko Kawamura)  
Kojima said people usually shy away from looking at actual photos of the sites of death, but she notices that they stare intently at her room boxes.

 The top view of a room box of another trash hoarder’s home (Naoko Kawamura)

 Miyu Kojima’s room box of a toilet (Naoko Kawamura)

LSD’s Long Strange Trip

A portrait of the Swiss chemist Albert Hoffman, created on a sheet of blotting paper used for LSD, is displayed at an exhibition at the Swiss National Library in Bern on Sept. 21. | AFP-JIJI

75 years from ‘problem child’ to ‘prodigy’

The Japan Times  AFP-JIJI

Lysergic acid diethylamide was labeled a “problem child” by the man who discovered its hallucinogenic properties in 1943. As it turns 75, the drug known as LSD may now be changing its image.

The late Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann famously learned of LSD’s psychedelic effects when he inadvertently took a small dose while doing lab work for the pharmaceutical company Sandoz.

He wanted the drug to be medically researched, convinced it could be a valuable psychiatric tool and lead to a deeper understanding of human consciousness.

But through the 1960s, LSD became synonymous with counterculture and anti-authority protests.

By the early 1970s, it had been widely criminalized in the West, prompting Hofmann to publish his 1979 memoir, “LSD: My Problem Child.”

The book, in which Hofmann sought to reassert LSD’s potential medical benefits, is featured in an exhibition at the Swiss National Library in the capital, Bern, to mark 75 years since the discovery.

Hofmann died in 2008 at the age of 102 but he likely would have been pleased by a series of recent developments.

After decades as a medical outcast, LSD has attracted renewed clinical interest, and there has been evidence that it can help treat anxiety and depression.

Such developments were what Hofmann was hoping for at the time of writing “My Problem Child.”
“If we can better understand how to use it, in medical practice related to meditation and LSD’s ability to promote visionary experiences under certain circumstances, then I think that this ‘problem child’ could become a prodigy,” he wrote.

He had discovered LSD while working with a fungus called ergot, which attacks cereal grains like rye and had previously been used for a variety of medical purposes. At the time, Sandoz was using it to make migraine medication.

Hofmann unknowingly created LSD when he combined the main active agent in ergot — lysergic acid — with diethylamide. After accidentally ingesting a trace of LSD, he began to feel strange, and later on deliberately took larger amounts to better understand the drug’s effects.

In a best-selling book published in May, “How to Change Your Mind,” the renowned American author Michael Pollan notes that LSD was the subject of widespread experimental research through the 1950s and 1960s and attracted the interest of leading psychiatrists.

But the situation changed.

“When Hofmann published his book in 1979, LSD was completely prohibited. There was no research,” said Hannes Mangold, curator of the National Library exhibit, called “Problem Child LSD turns 75.”

“What’s interesting is that for the last 10 to 15 years, research has once again been authorized and LSD as medicine has re-emerged.”

A nonprofit organization that has been at the forefront of driving the new wave of research is the California-based Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) in Santa Cruz.
MAPS receives mostly private funding from large and small donors to support medical research into controlled substances.

Brad Burge, director of strategic communications at MAPS, said that the organization had raised nearly $30 million for further research to build on a Phase II LSD study which, he said, found positive indications that the drug can successfully treat anxiety.

MAPS funded the Swiss psychiatrist Peter Gasser to conduct the Phase II study, which was published in 2014 and was the first controlled study of LSD in more than four decades.

“We kind of brought it full circle, back there (to Switzerland),” Burge said.

He said that in the early years following Hofmann’s discovery, Sandoz had sent out batches of LSD to any interested researcher, hoping someone would define a clear, marketable purpose for the drug.

“It was 1950s crowd-sourcing,” Burge said.

In 1970, the administration of U.S. President Richard Nixon listed LSD as a Schedule 1 narcotic, a classification given to drugs that Washington considers highly dangerous with no medical benefit.

MAPS and others have argued that the decision was more about politics than public health; Nixon was interested in cracking down on various groups with which LSD had — accurately or not — become linked, including hippies and opponents of the Vietnam War.

But the effect of the Schedule 1 designation was to bring serious research on LSD to a halt, both in the United States and among foreign laboratories worried about American reprisals, Burge said.

Mangold said the LSD research landscape was effectively dormant for nearly four decades and only began to change following a 2006 conference in the Swiss city of Basel to mark Hofmann’s 100th birthday.

Scientists from numerous countries left the Basel symposium resolved to pursue new research and asked their regulatory authorities for permission to work with LSD.

Burge said that a key finding of the Phase II MAPS trial was that none of the 12 patients who participated had adverse reactions.

Given the risks of taking a powerful psychotropic in an unsupervised context, proving that LSD could be safely administered by medical professionals was essential to advancing further research, he said.

In the study, Gasser focused on patients diagnosed with life-threatening diseases, who participated in LSD-assisted psychotherapy during which they were guided in confronting anxieties and painful experiences while under the influence.

The qualitative results of the study showed participants experienced a reduction in anxiety, but found that further research was needed to define model medical uses for LSD.

“It’s still early, but it is now conceivable that LSD could make a comeback as a (therapeutic) drug,” Mangold said.

An Ounce of Prevention?

The Ground Self-Defense Force's amphibious troop unit conducts its first joint exercise in Japan with U.S. Marines on Sunday on the island of Tanegashima in Kagoshima Prefecture, as part of joint training for operations to retake control of an enemy-held remote island. | KYODO

GSDF amphibious unit, U.S. Marines hold first drill in Japan to retake remote islands

The Japan Times  Kyodo

The Ground Self-Defense Force’s amphibious troop unit conducted its first joint exercise in Japan with U.S. Marines on Sunday in Kagoshima Prefecture, part of training for operations to retake control of enemy-held remote islands.

The drill, held on the island of Tanegashima, was aimed at strengthening coordination between the allies amid China’s growing maritime assertiveness around the Japanese-administered Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. The islands are also claimed by China, where they are known as the Diaoyu.

At around 6 a.m., five boats carrying members of the GSDF’s Amphibious Rapid Deployment Brigade left the transport ship Osumi off Tanegashima and landed on the island. The drill was open to the media.

Japanese and U.S. forces also conducted training to regain control of an enemy-held airport on the island, with GSDF and U.S. military personnel deploying from an SDF CH-47 helicopter.

The members, carrying unloaded rifles, acted out an engagement with an assumed enemy.

Sunday’s exercise, involving around 220 GSDF members and 10 U.S. Marines, was the first amphibious drill conducted in Japan and follows one in Hawaii this summer. The joint drill is scheduled to run through Friday.

“We improved our ability to conduct amphibious missions and the exercise was satisfying,” Maj. Keisuke Komatsu, who commanded the Japanese amphibious unit that conducted the drill at the airport, said in a statement.

Speaking to reporters, Col. Mark Clingan, assistant division commander of the 3rd Marine Division, expressed hopes of deepening coordination with the Japanese amphibious unit.

The SDF’s amphibious brigade started off with about 2,100 members and is stationed at the GSDF Camp Ainoura in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture.

Despite a recent thaw in Sino-Japanese relations, the two countries remain at odds over the Senkakus, with China routinely sending government vessels into the vicinity of the islets.

Product Wars


More  H1Plus 8 min. 49 sec.
Genetically engineered mascots become the latest craze in this all too possible future.

Watch it HERE

An IP proof of concept by the creators of True Skin and Pastel

Written and Directed by: Stephan Zlotescu (
Cinematographer: H1 (
Produced by: Stephan Zlotescu, H1, Vlad Caprini, Steve Tzirlin
Associate Producers: Mihai & Adrian Pircalabu, Omar A. Said
Executive Producer: Patrick Jean
Music: Out Alive - by J-Punch and Dave Moonshine -

(mini series being developed by Blackpills)
Production Companies:
Punkcity Productions
Opticflavor VFX Studio

Saturday, October 13, 2018

That's Just SILLY!

"SEAGULLS! (Stop It Now)" -- A Bad Lip Reading of The Empire Strikes Back

Bad Lip Reading Nov 25, 2016  3 min. 56 sec.

Yoda is not fond of seagulls. Full-length version of the song first seen here:

Slippery stairs - A Japanese games show

Amazing OrFunny Nov 17, 2017  8 min. 52 sec.
Can you climb these Slippery stairs? Slippery stairs - A Japanese games show

OK. So I do find some weird shit on You Tube late at night...