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80-mile-wide ‘storm’ is swarm of ladybugs


Image Credit: CC BY 2.0 Gabriel Gonzalez

The ladybugs spent the winter up in the mountains.

A storm that appeared on National Weather Service radar recently turned out to be something else entirely.

The vast swarm of insects, which covered a 6,400-square-mile region of Southern California, showed up on June 4th at an altitude of up to 9,000ft.

“The size of that is bewildering,” said ladybug expert Tim Kring from Virginia Tech University.

It is believed that the ladybugs had spent the winter engaged in a form of hibernation up in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains before waking up to find food as the warmer weather settled in.

The National Weather Service was able to tell the swarm apart from a meteorological event because the skies over the region were clear at the time and there was no rain.

A weather spotter also observed the cloud traveling towards the San Diego area.

These particular insects, which are known as convergent lady beetles, will ultimately lay their eggs and die after they have eaten enough food and the next generation will begin the cycle anew.

Source: Mashable

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Bizzare & Odd

Alabama Passes Law to Chemically Castrate Pedophiles

In the state of Alabama, certain types of sex offenders like pedophiles will now be chemically castrated by law before they are given parole. The legislation was signed into law by Alabama’s governor Kay Ivey, and will apply to all sex offenders who are convicted of crimes against children younger than 13.

For these offenders, chemicals will be used that will reduce their libido, and hopefully the likelihood of them repeating their crimes. Critics of the bill said that it was unconstitutional, claiming that it violates a person’s right to freedom from “cruel and unusual punishment.”

Attorney Raymond Johnson says the point of contention is the fact that this is happening once people have already paid their debt to society.

“They’re going to challenge it under the 8th Amendment Constitution. They’re going to claim that it is cruel and unusual punishment for someone who has served their time and for the rest of their life have to be castrated,” Johnson said.

The bill was initially introduced by Republican congressman Steve Hurst, who recently told CBS42 that the punishment fits the crime.

alabama

Steve Hurst Alabama State Representative Photo Credit: Steve Hurst

“I had people call me in the past when I introduced it and said don’t you think this is inhumane? I asked them what’s more inhumane than when you take a little infant child, and you sexually molest that infant child when the child cannot defend themselves or get away, and they have to go through all the things they have to go through. If you want to talk about inhumane – that’s inhumane. If we do something of this nature it would deter something like this happening again in Alabama and maybe reduce the numbers,” Hurst said.

This is a practice that is actually not legal throughout most of the United States. There are only 8 states that currently allow chemical or surgical castration for extreme sex offenders, but even in these states, it is rarely ever actually used. Under Alabama’s new laws, this would be happening to every prisoner that fit the criteria, by law.

In 1996, California became the first state to pass a law allowing for chemical castration of certain sex offenders. In the years that followed, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Montana, Oregon, and Washington also passed similar laws.

chemically castration

Injection Photo Credit: csoonline.com

However, as previously mentioned, the guidelines in most of these states are very loose, and this type of measure is rarely enforced, even in cases of crimes against children.

Chemical castration is an extreme measure for a modern industrialized society, but there are some cases where it could be plausible, according to experts. Earlier this week, we reported on the story of a disturbed man from the United Kingdom who avoided jail time after his third time getting caught with large stashes of child abuse images and videos.

The 36-year-old man was arrested with over a million illegal files on his home devices, which depicted graphic scenes of child sexual abuse. For over a decade, this man has been in and out of courthouses, repeating the same crimes over and over again.

This case is slightly different because the suspect only had images and videos, and because there was not a specific underage victim involved.

However, the drive to repeat the same crime over and over again is very similar among these types of predators. In cases where a predator has many underage victims and repeated offenses, a punishment like this is not unreasonable.

Alabama Passes Law to Chemically Castrate Pedophiles 1

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey Photo Credit: The Advocate

Alabama’s governor Kay Ivey has been in the national media spotlight for past several months, due to another piece of controversial legislation in the state. This May, Kay Ivey found herself at the center of a national debate on abortion, after signing one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country.

The legislation, called House Bill 314, “Human Life Protection Act,” bans all abortions in the state except when “abortion is necessary in order to prevent a serious health risk” to the woman. The bill will reclassify abortion as a Class A felony, which will be punishable by up to 99 years in prison for doctors who carry out the procedure.

However, the 74-year-old governor shocked her constituents this week, by signing a bill that legalized medical marijuana in the state. Kay Ivey has been the governor of Alabama for just two years, since 2017.

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Bizzare & Odd

Security camera captures strange creature like an Elf

When we talk about creatures like elves, we immediately think of mythical stories like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter and World of Warcraft.

creature like an Elf

However, to think that they can exist in our world is practically impossible. Imagine the surprise of a citizen of the United States when she found a similar creature in her security camera …

Since the first civilizations there have been stories of monsters, beasts and mythical and legendary creatures that have shared the world with different cultures. Even today, there is a belief that strange beings coexist with humanity, keeping hidden from the eyes of people.

Stories about how they lived and how they related to the human world have been transmitted between generations to this day. Even, mentioning certain people with a spatial gift to see them.

Be it myth, legend or reality, it never ceases to amaze us all, that is why we understand the reaction of Vivian Gomez, a citizen of Colorado, United States, who was totally shocked when she checked the security camera of her home when she woke up and the images, he found the silhouette of a creature similar to an elf walking very close to his car, which was in the parking lot of his house.

The creature, as you can see in the video, is extremely small, with long, pointed ears, frighteningly like an elf. However, the video only lasts nine seconds, so we do not know what happens next. It was there when Gomez decided to post the video on social networks in search of answers.

The publication, as expected, went viral all over the world in a matter of hours. Inclusive, media (as we mentioned above, are covering all kinds of strange phenomenon for some unknown reason) showed the video, which had already reached seven million reproductions and was shared in one hundred and thirty thousand occasions.

An immense number of users assured that it is more evidence that mythological beings not only existed, but actually exist, although they remain hidden from humans, although we can sometimes see them thanks to technology.

However, it can not be ruled out that it is an extraterrestrial. As a curiosity, many people highlight the enormous resemblance that has with the fictional creature of the Harry Potter saga, Dobby, the house elf.

Obviously, the skeptics have also spoken, ensuring that it is most likely that it is a child. However, the hostess said that the video was taken almost at eleven o’clock at night and, in her neighborhood, there are no children on the street at that time. Do you think the elves live among us?

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This Wasn’t Supposed To Happen: U.S. Employment Growth Just Plunged To The Lowest Level In 9 Years

If the U.S. economy was heading into a recession, we would expect to see a slowdown in the employment numbers, and that is precisely what is happening.  According to payroll processing firm ADP, the U.S. economy only added 27,000 new jobs in May, and that is way below the number that is needed just to keep up with population growth.  Of course some in the mainstream media are attempting to put a positive spin on this, but there really is no denying that this is a truly awful number.  In fact, we have not seen a number this bad in more than 9 years

Job creation skidded to a near-halt in May in another sign that the U.S. economic momentum is slowing.

Companies added just 27,000 new positions during the month, according to a report Wednesday from payroll processing firm ADP and Moody’s Analytics that was well below Dow Jones estimates of 173,000.

The reading was the worst since around the time the economic expansion began and the jobs market bottomed in March 2010 with a loss of 113,000.

9 years is a very long time, but this terrible employment number is perfectly consistent with all of the other horrible economic numbers that have been rolling in lately.

Time after time in recent weeks I have been using phrases such as “since the last recession” to describe what we are witnessing.  The U.S. economy has not been in such rough shape in nearly a decade, and things just keep getting worse.

So how did Wall Street respond to the latest employment news?

Actually, stock prices surged, because investors are super excited about the prospect that the Federal Reserve could soon lower interest rates

Stocks added to strong week-to-date performance on Wednesday as investors grew even more confident that the Federal Reserve will lower interest rates this year to reignite an economy wounded by trade battles.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 207.39 points to 25,539.57, while the S&P 500 advanced 0.8% to 2,826.15. The Nasdaq Composite closed 0.6% higher at 7,575.48.

Pushing interest rates all the way to the floor certainly helped the stock market recover after the last recession, but this time around there is a major twist.

The U.S. is currently engaged in a major trade war with China, and the normal tools that the Fed utilizes may not be powerful enough to overcome the negative effects of such a conflict.

And to make things worse, now the U.S. is also starting a trade war with Mexico.  On Wednesday, President Trump made it clear that “not nearly enough” progress had been achieved during negotiations with Mexican officials…

President Donald Trump said “not nearly enough” progress was made in talks with Mexico to mitigate the flow of undocumented migrants and illegal drugs, raising the likelihood that the U.S. will follow through with tariffs next week.

So tariffs will be slapped on Mexican goods starting on Monday, and President Trump seems quite excited about this

“If no agreement is reached, Tariffs at the 5% level will begin on Monday, with monthly increases as per schedule,” Trump tweeted Wednesday. “The higher the Tariffs go, the higher the number of companies that will move back to the USA!”

Of course the Mexicans will almost certainly retaliate, and both countries will start seeing higher prices and significant job losses.

In fact, one study has concluded that the U.S. economy could lose more than 400,000 jobs as a result of these tariffs on Mexico.  The following comes from CNN

If the 5% US tariff on all goods from Mexico takes effect and is maintained, more than 400,000 jobs in the United States could be lost, an analysis released this week found.

The tariffs on Mexico, set to go in effect on Monday, would cost Texas alone more than 117,000 jobs, according to the analysis by The Perryman Group, an economic consulting firm. Texas is Mexico’s largest export market, making the two economies closely intertwined.

And the truth is that those numbers could actually be on the low side.

According to Marc Thiessen, a trade war with Mexico would literally put millions of U.S. jobs at risk…

Indeed, Mexican tariffs could be even more devastating for Americans than those imposed on China. Deutsche Bank estimates the tariffs could raise the average price of automobiles sold in the United States by $1,300. Indeed, U.S. and Mexican auto-supply chains are so deeply integrated that many parts cross the border multiple times before they end up in a finished vehicle — which means they would be hit by tariffs multiple times, compounding costs. Ten million U.S. workers’ jobs depend on this supply chain; tariffs would put those jobs at risk, including those of the “forgotten Americans” in the industrial Midwest whose jobs Trump vowed to protect.

We shall see what happens, but the outlook for the U.S. economy for the rest of this year is not good at all, and beyond that things look exceedingly grim.

Hopefully I am wrong, but it certainly appears that a major economic downturn is developing just in time for the 2020 presidential election.

There is one more thing that I would like to mention before I wrap up this article.  This week, a Russian news source reported that Russia and China “will sign an agreement” regarding the use of their own national currencies in bilateral trade with one another…

Russia and China will sign an agreement on possible payments in national currencies. A decree of the Russian government on signing of a relevant agreement with the Chinese side was released on the official portal of legal information on Wednesday.

According to the draft decree approved through that government document, “settlements and payments for goods, service and direct investments between economic entities of the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China are made in accordance with the international practice and the legislation of the sides’ states with the use of foreign currency, the Russian currency (rubles) and the Chinese currency (yuan).”

In other words, they are dumping the dollar in favor of their own national currencies when trading with each other.  This is a direct threat to the international dominance of the U.S. dollar, and other countries have been discussing similar moves.

For decades, the U.S. dollar has essentially been a global currency.  More dollars are actually used outside of the United States than within this country, and most Americans don’t realize that.

This has given us some enormous advantages in the global marketplace, and it could be just a matter of time before those advantages begin to disappear.

Things that used to take months or years to happen are now happening in a matter of days.  The pace of change is really picking up, and right now the momentum of events is heading in a direction that is definitely not favorable to the United States.

About The Author

Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared NowThe Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

SourceThe Economic Collapse Blog

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