Thursday, 25 April 2013

Omar Borkan Al Gala

Meet Omar Borkan Al Gala , the hunk from UAE deported from Saudi Arabia because officers of the country's morality police, fearing for the safety of their women, thought he was too handsome to be allowed to stay.
According to Jezebel, Omar Borkan Al Gala, a Dubai-based actor, photographer and poet, was one of three men from the UAE attending the Jenadriyah Heritage and Cultural Festival in Riyadh as delegates.
Digital Journal reported that he and his colleagues were kicked out Saudi Arabia because they was just too handsome to be allowed to stay and expose modest Saudi Arabian women to unaccustomed carnal temptations.
News that some UAE men were kicked out of the conservative Sunni kingdom out of fear of exposing women to spiritual dangers of carnal lust first appeared in the Arabic newspaper Elaph. According to Elaph: "A festival official said the three Emiratis were taken out on the grounds they are too handsome and that the Commission members feared female visitors could fall for them."
Both Elaph and Sky Dancing Blog reported that Al Gala was at the UAE's pavilion at the Riyad festival when an incident involving a well known UAE female singer, Aryam, led to the feared religious morality police, the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, storming the UAE pavilion and unceremoniously bundling him and his colleagues out of the festival and out of the kingdom entirely!
Sky Dancing Blog confirmed Aryam went to the UAE pavilion but the artiste explained she visited the pavilion as a delegate of the UAE. According to Sky Dancing Blog, Aryam said she was invited by the Abu Dhabi Culture and Tourism Authority.


How to Intentionally Forget a Memory?

DISCLAIMER: THIS POST is not by any means liable on the effects of the below information. Discretion is advised.
Direct Suppression
Try to block out all thoughts of a certain memory.

Increases activity in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (orange), which mediates working memory and cognitive control.
Reduces activity in the hippocampus (blue), an area important for conscious recollection.

Thought Substitution
Try to forget by substituting the unwanted memory with a more desired one.

Increases activity in the left caudal prefrontal cortex (green), thought to decrease saliency of intrusive memories, and the midventrolateral prefrontal cortex (red), which helps to retrieve a specific memory.
Source: Scientific American

Additional info.

Direct suppression means that when a memory flashes in your mind, you force yourself to erase it immediately by suppressing the thought.

Thought substitution means that everytime a memory, let's say, an unpleasant one, pops in your mind, you replace it with a good memory. Example, a memory of you tripping in public and everyone laughing at you emerge, and then to avoid feeling bad, you try to remember your first date.


Friday, 22 February 2013

Effects of Secondhand Smoke

By now, it's become very clear that smoking is bad for your health. The government, American Lung Association, and a variety of other health organizations have launched campaign after campaign to illustrate the grim repercussions (from lung cancer to heart disease) of lighting up and to encourage Americans to kick the habit.

What may be less obvious is the effect smoking has on those who are exposed to it secondhand. That exposure can be significant, especially for those who live or work with a smoker. In reality, most of the smoke from a burning cigarette doesn't get sucked down into a smoker's lungs -- it escapes into the air, where it can be inhaled by anyone unfortunate enough to be nearby.

In an effort to protect the health of nonsmokers, many states have passed laws outlawing smoking in public places such as restaurants, bars, airplanes, and offices. Yet there are still many people who can't escape secondhand smoke, especially the children of smokers, who regularly breathe in the toxic fumes from their parents' cigarettes and cigars. Even smokers who try to be careful about where they light up may not be doing a good enough job of protecting those around them.
What Is Secondhand Smoke?

When you breathe in smoke that comes from the end of a lit cigarette, cigar, or pipe (sidestream smoke) or that is exhaled by a smoker (mainstream smoke), you're inhaling almost the same amount of chemicals as the smoker breathes in. Tobacco smoke contains more than 4,000 different chemical compounds, more than 50 of which are known to cause cancer. These are just a few of the chemicals that float into your lungs when you are exposed to secondhand smoke:

Hydrogen cyanide -- a highly poisonous gas used in chemical weapons and pest control
Benzene -- a component of gasoline
Formaldehyde -- a chemical used to embalm corpses
Carbon monoxide -- a poisonous gas found in car exhaust

A 2006 surgeon general's report confirmed that secondhand smoking (also called involuntary or passive smoking) can kill, and it concluded that there is no amount of exposure to secondhand smoke that is safe. The more secondhand smoke you breathe in, the more your health risks increase.

Here are a few statistics on the effects of secondhand smoke exposure:

*126 million nonsmoking Americans are exposed to secondhand smoke at home and work.
*Secondhand smoke exposure causes nearly 50,000 deaths in adult nonsmokers in the U.S. each year.
*Nonsmokers increase their risk of developing lung cancer by 20% to 30% and heart disease by 25% to 30% when they are exposed to secondhand smoke.
*About 3,000 deaths from lung disease in nonsmokers each year are caused by secondhand smoke exposure.
*An estimated 46,000 nonsmokers who live with smokers die each year from heart disease.
*Between 150,000 and 300,000 children under the age of 18 months get respiratory infections (such as pneumonia and bronchitis) from secondhand smoke; 7,500 to 15,000 of them must be hospitalized.
*More than 40% of children who visit the emergency room for severe asthma attacks live with smokers.

Secondhand smoke can have a number of serious health effects on nonsmokers, particularly cancer and heart disease.

Natural Tips to Fade Acne Scars

Scars are permanent. Old ones will remain there forever. But, you can try to fade with these easy tips.

1. Honey is great for skin and wonderful for scars. Apply honey to acne scars and leave it for about 10 minutes.

2. A rich source of vitamin A, tomatoes have excellent healing properties to reduce the appearance of scars. Eat fresh raw (cooked are fine too) tomatoes everyday.

3. Aloe Vera is a great remedy to all skin problems.

4. Drink lemon juice (unsweetened) everyday for a few days. Alternate with mosambi, orange or tangerine.

5. Regular application of ice cubes can give favourable results in the long run. Apply ice cubes on acne scars for at least 10 to 15 minutes everyday.

Since they are all non-chemical based, why not try it?

Jackie Chan

Jackie Chan now officially holds the Guinness World Record for the most credits in one movie and the most stunts by a living actor.

Top 10 Most Evil Humans

Top #10
Delphine LaLaurie

LaLaurie was a sadistic socialite who lived in New Orleans. Her home was a chamber of horrors. On April 10, 1834, a fire broke out in the mansion’s kitchen, and firefighters found two slaves chained to the stove. They appeared to have started the fire themselves, in order to attract attention. The firefighters were lead by other slaves to the attic, where the real surprise was. Over a dozen disfigured and maimed slaves were manacled to the walls or floors. Several had been the subjects of gruesome medical experiments. One man appeared to be part of some bizarre sex change, a woman was trapped in a small cage with her limbs broken and reset to look like a crab, and another woman with arms and legs removed, and patches of her flesh sliced off in a circular motion to resemble a caterpillar. Some had had their mouths sewn shut, and had subsequently starved to death, whilst others had their hands sewn to different parts of their bodies. Most were found dead, but some were alive and begging to be killed, to release them from the pain. LaLaurie fled before she could be bought to justice – she was never caught.

Top #9 
Ilse Koch

Known as The “Bitch of Buchenwald” because of her sadistic cruelty towards prisoners, Ilse Koch was married to another evil Nazi, who served in the SS, Karl Otto Koch, but outshone him in the depraved, inhumane disregard for life which was her trademark. She used her sexual prowess by wandering around the camps naked, with a whip, and if any man so much as glanced at her she would have them shot on the spot. The most infamous accusation against Ilse Koch was that she had selected inmates with interesting tattoos to be killed, so that their skins could be made into lampshades for her home (though, unfortunately, no evidence of these lampshades has been found). After the war she was arrested and spent time in prison on different charges, eventually hanging herself in her cell in 1967, apparently consumed by guilt.

Top #8
Shirō Ishii

Ishii was a microbiologist and the lieutenant general of Unit 731, a biological warfare unit of the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War. He was born in the former Shibayama Village of Sanbu District in Chiba Prefecture, and studied medicine at Kyoto Imperial University. In 1932, he began his preliminary experiments in biological warfare as a secret project for the Japanese military. In 1936, Unit 731 was formed. Ishii built a huge compound — more than 150 buildings over six square kilometers — outside the city of Harbin, China.

Some of the numerous atrocities committed by Ishii, and others under his command in Unit 731, include: vivisection of living people (including pregnant women who were impregnated by the doctors), prisoners had limbs amputated and reattached to other parts of their body, some prisoners had parts of their bodies frozen and thawed to study the resulting untreated gangrene. Humans were also used as living test cases for grenades and flame throwers. Prisoners were injected with inoculations of disease, disguised as vaccinations, to study their effects. To study the effects of untreated venereal diseases, male and female prisoners were deliberately infected with syphilis and gonorrhea via rape, then studied.

Having been granted immunity by the American Occupation Authorities at the end of the war, Ishii never spent any time in jail for his crimes and died at the age of 67, of throat cancer.


Top #7
Ivan IV of Russia

Ivan IV of Russia, also know as Ivan the Terrible, was the Grand Duke of Muscovy, from 1533 to 1547, and was the first ruler of Russia to assume the title of Tsar. In 1570, Ivan was under the belief that the elite of the city of Novgorod planned to defect to Poland, and led an army to stop them, on January 2. Ivan’s soldiers built walls around the perimeter of the city in order to prevent the people of the city escaping. Between 500 and 1000 people were gathered every day by the troops, then tortured and killed in front of Ivan and his son. In 1581, Ivan beat his pregnant daughter-in-law for wearing immodest clothing, causing a miscarriage. His son, also named Ivan, upon learning of this, engaged in a heated argument with his father, which resulted in Ivan striking his son in the head with his pointed staff, causing his son’s (accidental) death.

Top #6
Oliver Cromwell

The Cromwellian conquest of Ireland (1649–53) refers to the re-conquest of Ireland by the forces of the English Parliament, led by Oliver Cromwell, during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms. The consequence of this conquest (in order to displace Catholic authority) was 200,000 civilian deaths from war-related famine and disease, and 50 thousand Irish being taken as slaves. Cromwell considered Catholics to be heretics so the Irish conquest was a modern day Crusade for him. The bitterness caused by the Cromwellian settlement was a powerful source of Irish nationalism from the 17th century onwards. He died in 1658, and was so hated that, in 1661, he was exhumed from the grave and given a posthumous execution – his corpse was hung in chains at Tyburn, and he was later dismembered and his remains thrown into a pit, with his head being displayed on a pole outside Westminster Hall for the next twenty-four years.

Top #5
Jiang Qing

Jiang Qing was the wife of Mao Tse-tung, the Communist dictator of China. Through clever maneuvering, she managed to reach the highest position of power within the communist party (short of being President). It is believed that she was the main driving force behind China’s Cultural Revolution (of which she was the deputy director). During the Cultural Revolution, much economic activity was halted, and countless ancient buildings, artifacts, antiques, books and paintings were destroyed by Red Guards. The 10 years of the Cultural Revolution also brought the education system to a virtual halt, and many intellectuals were sent to prison camps. Millions of people in China, reportedly, had their human rights annulled during the Cultural Revolution. Millions more were also forcibly displaced. Estimates of the death toll – civilians and Red Guards – from various Western and Eastern sources are about 500,000 in the true years of chaos of 1966—1969, but some estimates are as high as 3 million deaths, with 36 million being persecuted.

Top #4
Pol Pot

Pol Pot was the leader of the Khmer Rouge and the Prime Minister of Cambodia, from 1976 to 1979, having been de facto leader since mid-1975. During his time in power, Pol Pot imposed an extreme version of agrarian communism where all city dwellers were relocated to the countryside to work in collective farms and forced labour projects. The combined effect of slave labour, malnutrition, poor medical care and executions is estimated to have killed around 2 million Cambodians (approximately one third of the population). His regime achieved special notoriety for singling out all intellectuals and other “bourgeois enemies” for murder. The Khmer Rouge committed mass executions in sites known as the Killing Fields. The executed were buried in mass graves. In order to save ammunition, executions were often carried out using hammers, axe handles, spades or sharpened bamboo sticks.

Pol Pot retreated into Thailand with the remnants of his Khmer Rouge army and began a guerrilla war against a succession of Cambodian governments lasting over the next 17 years. After a series of internal power struggles in the 1990s, he finally lost control of the Khmer Rouge. In April 1998, 73-year-old Pol Pot died of an apparent heart attack following his arrest, before he could be brought to trial by an international tribunal for the events of 1975-79.

Top #3
Vlad III of Romania

Vlad III of Romania (also known as Vlad the Impaler) was Prince of Wallachia three times between 1448 and 1476. Vlad is best known for the legends of the exceedingly cruel punishments he imposed during his reign and for serving as the primary inspiration for the vampire main character in Bram Stoker’s popular Dracula novel. In Romania he is viewed by many as a prince with a deep sense of justice. His method of torture was a horse attached to each of the victim’s legs as a sharpened stake was gradually forced into the body. The end of the stake was usually oiled, and care was taken that the stake not be too sharp; else the victim might die too rapidly from shock. Wikipedia has an article that describes, in great details, the methods of Vlad’s cruelty. The list of tortures he is alleged to have employed is extensive: nails in heads, cutting off of limbs, blinding, strangulation, burning, cutting off of noses and ears, mutilation of sexual organs (especially in the case of women), scalping, skinning, exposure to the elements or to animals, and boiling alive. There are claims that on some occasions ten thousand people were impaled in 1460 alone.

Top #2
Adolf Hitler

Adolf Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany in 1933, becoming “Führer” in 1934 until his suicide in 1945. By the end of the second world war, Hitler’s policies of territorial conquest and racial subjugation had brought death and destruction to tens of millions of people, including the genocide of some six million Jews, in what is now known as the Holocaust. On 30 April, 1945, after intense street-to-street combat, when Soviet troops were spotted within a block or two of the Reich Chancellory, Hitler committed suicide, shooting himself while simultaneously biting into a cyanide capsule. Hitler ranks over Himmler merely for the fact that it was in his power to prevent Himmler’s policies being implemented.

The Most Evil Man in History (Top #1)
Josef Stalin

Stalin was General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union’s Central Committee, from 1922 until his death, in 1953. Under Stalin’s leadership, the Ukraine suffered from a famine (Holodomor) so great it is considered by many to be an act of genocide on the part of Stalin’s government. Estimates of the number of deaths range from 2.5 million to 10 million. The famine was caused by direct political and administrative decisions. In addition to the famine, Stalin ordered purges within the Soviet Union of any person deemed to be an enemy of the state. In total, estimates of the number murdered under Stalin's reign, range from 10 million to 60 million.

Dark alien planet discovered by NASA?

Scientists are unsure what causes the planet to be so dark, but they believe it could be 'a chemical we haven't even thought of yet.'

An alien world blacker than coal, the darkest planet known, has been discovered in the galaxy.

The world in question is a giant the size of Jupiter known as TrES-2b. NASA's Kepler spacecraft detected it lurking around the yellow sun-like star GSC 03549-02811 some 750 lightyears away in the direction of the constellation Draco.