October 27, 2016
Calais, Zika And A Pirate Party
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IN A NUTSHELL: MUST READ
Calais: Mission Accomplished… Kind Of
France announced that the “Calais Jungle” is officially dismantled and congratulated themselves for completing the task of moving thousands of migrants out of the camp in record time. Pas-de-Calais Prefect Fabienne Buccio even gave a hearty “mission accomplished” in her announcement, confirming there were “no more migrants in the camp.” However, journalists are saying that’s not exactly true. So far, 4,404 asylum seekers have been shipped elsewhere within France and 1,200 children registered entered a temporary center made out of converted shipping containers near the camp. But there are still large numbers of both groups that are unregistered and, as far as France is concerned, have “disappeared.”
Where did they actually go?
While many are blatantly still in Calais, it’s possible a large portion of this group left to hang out near Calais and will set up camp again once the operation is over. But charities are mostly concerned with the unaccompanied minors that have still not been processed by French authorities and will likely have nowhere to go without the converted shipping containers. But sure, let’s call this “mission accomplished” and get home in time for happy hour.
Zika’s Worst Enemy: A Take-Out Box Full Of Bacteria
The solution to the Zika epidemic looks like it may come in a Chinese take-out box, or at least that’s what Australian entomologist Scott O’Neill and billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates are calling it. O’Neill and his team believe that Wolbachia, the bacteria that sounds like a small fuzzy creature from Star Wars, inhibits a mosquito’s ability to transmit the Zika virus. In order to infect the mosquitoes with the bacteria, his team is transporting “Chinese noodle boxes” – the scientists’ description, not ours – to parts of Brazil and Colombia. The boxes contain “good” mosquitoes and dried mosquito eggs that will grow to replace the “bad” mosquitoes. This wacky strategy taken from the Trojan War will have people growing mosquitoes out of a takeout box in their backyard. If you’ve ever had sea monkeys as a child it’s a bit like that – the only difference is this effort has been funded with $18 million from the Wellcome Trust.
NUTS AND BOLTS: SHOULD READ
Polls Project That Pirates Could Take Over Iceland
Iceland seems to be having way more fun with their election process. The Icelandic Pirate Party is on course to form the next government, as analysts predict they could win 18 to 20 parliamentary seats in Saturday’s upcoming election. The Pirate Party set sail on a campaign for complete government transparency, direct democracy, the decriminalization of drugs and presumably pirate booty. They aren’t your typical pillaging seafarers: the party’s leader, Birgitta Jónsdóttir, is a feminist MP who wants to offer asylum to Edward Snowden and would rather create a “horizontal structure” within her party than serve as Prime Minister. Sure, a Pirate Party sounds a little whacky, but with so many different far-right parties on the rise elsewhere in Europe, the pirates are starting to look like the voice of reason.
Things Are Going Downhill For Women In Canada
Canada isn’t looking like such a great option for Americans dissatisfied with the election results. The UN recently ranked the country 25th for gender equality. What’s worse is that in 1995, Canada was first on that list. Activist groups are now pressuring the government to increase healthcare access, remove the pay gap between women with children and women without, as well as provide better support for indigenous women. Even though they fell from #1 to #25, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won praise when he declared himself a feminist and appointed women to half of his cabinet positions. It just goes to show that actions speak louder than pink t- shirts.
NATO To Russia: You Can’t Sit With US
Russia formally withdrew a request for its naval battle crew to dock and refuel at a Spanish port on Wednesday after NATO members put pressure on Spain to reject the Russians. The Russian flotilla includes their only aircraft carrier, the Admiral Kuznetsov, which is known for being more of a “threat to its crew” than anything else and for occasionally breaking down (it is accompanied by a tug boat). The Kuznetsov is set to sail to Syria as part of Russia’s ongoing military campaign to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the civil war. Not sure how effective it will be beyond a propaganda tool though…
PNUT READ: Our Profile On Vladimir Putin
SPONSORED NUTS: MACK WELDON
Most men go through life suffering silently from the pains associated with “uncomfortable underwear.” Scholars have long argued that poorly designed briefs might be the culprit behind outbursts like when Phillipines President Duterte told Obama to “go to hell” or that time Howard Dean screamed uncontrollably on the 2004 campaign trail. To help you avoid similar outbursts Mack Weldon has redesigned men’s underwear to be more comfortable and more stylish. They are so confident about it that if you don’t like it they will send you a new style or even refund you. Sounds like a no brainer.
KEEPING OUR EYE ON
Iraq: ISIS continues to use car bombs and its own “suicide squad” to fight back as Iraqi forces push closer to Mosul. But it wasn’t all bad. In a region starved for good news, reports emerged that Iraqi special forces managed to rescue puppies that were trapped in a collapsed tunnel once controlled by ISIS.
Patient Zero: New genetic research has finally exonerated Gaëtan Dugas, the Canadian flight attendant known as “patient zero.” Despite being blamed as the first infected person to bring HIV/AIDS to the United States, analysis of his HIV genome shows that it was not the root from which the virus diversified in North America.
Selfies: Taking pictures in voting booths is still not allowed in many states. But it’s 2016 and we have to send a public service announcement against “Ballot Selfies.” Here’s a handy guide to not committing an offense while you duckface.
Samantha Bee talks to female heads of state to see what might happen if the United States has a female president.
This heated argument between Rudy Giuliani and Chris Cuomo is a microcosm of the whole election.
It’s still alive, but things are not looking good for the Great Barrier Reef.
LOOSE NUTS: FOR YOUR ENJOYMENT
The World’s Tallest Church Is Eroding Because People Keep Peeing On It
Officials in the city of Ulm, Germany are begging men to stop relieving themselves on the famous Ulm Minster, which has the world’s tallest church tower, because its stone base is being eroded by the salts and acids found in urine. The city is desperate to stop men from peeing on the historic structure and even doubled fines for those caught, but it made little difference. There are several public events held in the square near the church throughout the year, and when there is a line to the portable restrooms, some guys can’t hold it and think the church’s celebrated Gothic architecture is a suitable alternative. Their drunken shamelessness is literally sinking the church, which is a kind of blasphemy that not even Goethe could write. Having the world’s tallest church is a major tourist attraction for Ulm, why would anyone want to piss that away?
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