Saturday, August 31

US teen put in a coma after vaping too much.

A teenager in America was left in a comatose state after vaping too much left her lungs near fatally damaged.18-year-old Maddie Nelson from Utah was taken to hospital earlier this month after reporting difficulty breathing, chest pains and nausea. Doctors found that her lungs were severely inflamed with her vaping hobby being the key factor. Nelson had picked up vaping three years ago believing it to be safe, however, when doctors saw her condition, they placed her in a medically induced coma. Nelson has now, understandably, changed her stance on vaping and has taken to Facebook to warn people off using the e-cigarettes. She said: "I used to just tell myself it won't happen to me, but it can and will happen to you too...take my advice, don't smoke, don't vape. #vape #stopthevape."Nelson also appeared on American tv channel Fox 13 where she said: "My temperature was so high, my brain just completely shut off."I thought I was in the hospital for one night, and I was actually there for four days."A GoFundMe page was set up in order to raise cash for medical bills for Nelson, with her two sisters, Sadie and Andrea along with her brother Dylan also spoke against the popular pastime. They wrote: "On Wednesday, July 31st she was transferred to another hospital where she was rushed to the ICU."At this point, Maddie could barely breathe, and after two hours of being in this state she was incredibly exhausted and didn't know how much longer she was going to last, the situation went from serious to potentially fatal."When her chest X-ray came back the damage to her lungs was so severe the respiratory therapist will be using it as a teaching aid.""Maddie's generation and those after her are the guinea pigs of the popularising of the 'vape life' and after only a few years we are seeing some pretty scary side effects."Next time you reach for your Juul and feel good about not smoking, think again."

The Queen approves Boris Johnson's plan to suspend UK Parliament.

Brexit took yet another chaotic turn Wednesday when a controversial request from British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to suspend UK Parliament from mid-September was approved by Queen Elizabeth. The audacious gambit wrong-footed the Prime Minister's opponents by shortening the time available to lawmakers to block a no-deal Brexit. The news was met with fury by opposition politicians, and even some members of Johnson's own party, who denounced it as potentially unconstitutional and undemocratic. John Bercow, the Speaker of the House of Commons, called the move a "constitutional outrage." Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn called it a "smash and grab" of British democracy. Brexit is due to happen on October 31, and Johnson has promised the UK will leave the European Union on that date with or without a deal. The Members of Parliament (MPs) -- a majority of whom oppose no-deal -- now effectively have just a few days before and after Parliament is "prorogued," or suspended, to pass any legislation preventing a hard break with the EU. The suspension ends on October 14, after the Queen's Speech where the monarch lays out the government's agenda in the House of Lords.
In a televised interview on Wednesday, Johnson denied that he was seeking to prevent Parliament from limiting his Brexit plans."That is completely untrue. If you look at what we're doing, we're bringing forward a new legislative program," he said. In a letter to lawmakers, the Prime Minister said Parliament "will have the opportunity to debate the Government's overall program, and approach to Brexit, in the run-up to EU Council, and then vote on this on 21 and 22 October, once we know the outcome of the Council."A large number of protesters gathered outside the UK Parliament on Wednesday evening and stormed the media pen -- which is cordoned off by police. Police officers on the ground said that they estimated between 1,000 and 1,500 protesters were in the area. A group later moved to the gates of Downing Street, blocking off Parliament Square on their way and were heard shouting: "Boris is a liar" and "Bring him down."

Most Australians can now change the gender on their birth certificates.

A southern-eastern state in Australia, Victoria, has become the fifth state with a law that allows transgender people to easily change their gender on paper. According to a report, the birth certificate bill passed 26-14 in the Victorian Upper House on Tuesday, August 27. However, it still awaits the royal assent before it officially becomes a law in the state. The new law will allow transgender and gender diverse folks the freedom to have their documents reflect their gender of choice. It is also still applicable to those among them that have previously had gender reassignment surgeries. Victoria’s birth certificate bill will also take into consideration children who want to change their gender, given that they have the permission of their parents. Alongside permission from parents or guardians, such children will also need to have a statement from a doctor or psychologist. Speaking about the development, Equality Minister Martin Foley said: "Interstate and international evidence shows that whilst not a large number of people take up these options it's simply is an option that's there to people. "Its the choice to make sure that identity documents reflect the reality of the life that people live."

Drug dealer who posed with cash, cars and guns on Instagram jailed for 17 years.

A young Instagram influencer who posed with stacks of cash, scantily clad women and high-powered guns has been locked up for drug dealing. Wyatt Pasek amassed a big following online as 'Oxygod', a seemingly high rolling 22-year-old who liked to pose in baths full of money. While he was boasting of his investment strategies through Instagram stories, Pasek was actually making his fortune by selling counterfeit pills laced with fentanyl. Along with 22-year-old Duc Cao and 23-year-old Isaiah Suarez, Pasek ran a secret laboratory on the Balboa Peninsula in California where he processed thousands of the pills bought from a Chinese supplier. The drugs were designed to look like prescription painkiller Oxycontin - an opioid widely taken across the USA - but actually contained fentanyl.
The incredibly strong synthetic opioid is easy to overdose on and claimed the lives of 20,000 people in the country in 2016. After the drug racket was busted at the end of a six-month investigation, in November Pasek pleaded guilty to charges of narcotics-trafficking conspiracy, being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm and money laundering. On Monday Pasek, who lived in the penthouse of a Santa Ana high rise, was sentenced to 17 and a half years in prison. Cao, of Orange County, and Suarez, of Newport Beach, received seven and three years respectively.
“The defendants, in this case, played a direct role in fueling this nation’s opioid crisis,” United States Attorney Nick Hanna said in a statement.“The use of powerful drugs such as fentanyl in counterfeit pills intentionally made to look like less-lethal opioids demonstrates complete disrespect for human life.”At the time of their arrest authorities found a pill press lab with close to 100,000 fake oxycodone pills, six kilograms of fentanyl and hundreds of fake Xanax pills. The drug racket proved to be very profitable for the group.
Having spent about a year selling the pills online, Pasek had amassed $21,000 (£17,100) in cash, a Silver Royal Offshore watch with diamonds, a gold and diamond Bitcoin necklace, two gold bars and thousands of dollars in cryptocurrency. He was eager to show off his wealth under the Instagram nickname yung10x.In one post he sits on a sofa surrounded by five women, pointing a gun at the camera other a table strewn with cash and a fancy looking bottle of alcohol. The caption underneath reads: "Babe if she hip, Saint Laurent if she boujee."Another has him sitting on the bonnet of a car holding money in his hands with a handkerchief covering his face. Underneath he wrote: "I think the table's turning. I think you learn from the bridge you burn when you see it burning."I think you learn from the world when you see it turning."
On Monday he struck a more conciliatory tone, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. He said: “I know I have affected countless people.“I can’t even imagine how much damage I have done.”

Ten teens hurt as gunman opens fire inside American football stadium.

Ten teenagers have been hurt after a shooting inside a stadium following a 'fight in the stands' at an American Football match. Shots have been reported at the Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Alabama after a high school game between Williamson and LeFlore.Police are saying that 10 have been hurt between the ages of 15 and 18. Two people are being questioned by police. Six people were directly shot with five are said to be in critical condition. According to witnesses, the shots were fired at the end of the match after 'a fight in stands'.Police say victims were transported to local hospitals and one of the injured had a seizure.
.Mobile Police Chief Battiste said: "Why are the young people bringing this type of violence to public events?"They're bringing their beefs that they have from the neighborhoods and they're putting other people in harm's way."He added that the police would strive to make them understand they will not tolerate juvenile violence in the community. Williamson beat Leflore 10-0 in the match.

Stunning images show Britain's dramatic new 'Sky Pool' where swimmers can take a dip 115 feet above London next door to US Embassy.

Britain's dramatic new 'Sky Pool' has taken a step closer to completion after undergoing final testing before being shipped to London. Suspended 35 metres high in the air and linking two ten-story buildings together, the iconic structure will offer views of the House of Parliament, the London Eye and London's city skyline. The 'Sky Pool', which accompanies a roof-top spa, summer bar and Orangery, is the centrepiece of the £1 billion development in Vauxhall, south London, next to the new US Embassy.
The first of its kind and entirely transparent, the 25m-long, 5m-wide and 3m-deep infinity pool, is set to become the most exclusive venue to take a dip in Britain. Nestled between the sky and the water swimmers are expected to feel like they are in an aquarium rather than an outdoor pool, as they look 35m down below. Bathers will also be able to swim between the adjoining buildings. The exclusive behind-the-scenes film can now reveal the intricate work of a team of expert architects, engineers, and consultants who are pushing the boundaries of construction to create the Sky Pool. Workers can be seen cutting steel to measure and polishing the acrylic pool structure at their base in Colorado, USA. And the pictures reveal how the team, made up of architects Arup Associates, engineers Eckersley O'Callaghan and aquarium designers Reynolds, are preparing to move the huge bath to London. The buildings connected by the Sky Pool will be subject to normal movements inherent to ten-story buildings including wind sway and foundation settlement. But the pool structure can deal with these movements by not being rigidly connected at both ends as it can slide while maintaining watertight integrity.
The Sky Pool, which is set to open in next summer, is the show-stopping highlight of the Embassy Gardens development by EcoWorld Ballymore, which includes 2,000 homes and luxury apartments, a shopping complex, office space, as well as bars, restaurants, and landscaped gardens, built around the new US Embassy. Tan Sri Dato' Sri Liew Kee Sin, Executive Vice Chairman, of EcoWorld International, said: 'The construction of the Sky Pool has been a very exciting project, which EcoWorld Ballymore is delighted to be turning into a reality. 'The opening next year will be a huge milestone for the development, and for the Nine Elms area more generally, as the pool really will be a spectacle that locals and visitors to the area alike will want to see. It is a product of unique ambition, innovation, perseverance, and imagination, we hope both residents and businesses in the area will be proud to have the Sky Pool on their doorsteps.' Sean Mulryan, of Ballymore, added: 'The vision for the Sky Pool stemmed from a desire to push the boundaries in the capability of construction and engineering, Ecoworld Ballymore wanted to do something that had never been done before. 'We like to push the boundaries on all aspects of design, the Sky Pool's transparent structure is the result of significant advancements in technologies over the last decade. The experience of the pool will be truly unique, it will feel like floating through the air in central London,' she added.

Friday, August 30

Man to walk free from prison 36 years after he was locked up for stealing £41.

A man is due to walk free from prison after spending 36 years locked up for stealing £41. Alvin Kennard was serving life without parole under an old Alabama 'three strikes' law. The 58-year-old was first charged with two counts of burglary first degree and grand larceny and received a three year suspended sentence in 1979. Four years later he was charged and convicted of robbery in the first degree after robbing a bakery of $50 (£41). Since then, he has remained in jail on a life sentence under the Habitual Felony Offender Act.
Now, a judge has heard his plea to be released at a court hearing in Jefferson County. The court head Kennard, who has spent most of his adult life at the William E. Donaldson Correctional Facility in Bessemer, was ready to take responsibility for his past actions. Kennard said: "I'm sorry for what I did... I was wrong. I take responsibility for what I did in the past. I want the opportunity to get it right."Judge Carpenter is now said to be filing paperwork to the Department of Corrections ready for his release. At the hearing, Kennard's family stood up and cheered as they heard he would be released. His niece Patricia Jones said that she had been visiting him for years in prison and she could see how much he had changed for the better. She said: "It was a couple of years that he started talking about God and I knew he had changed."He wants to be forgiven for what he had done and he wants the opportunity to come back and learn how to survive."

Brother of Olympic gold medal gymnast Simone Biles is charged with MURDER.

The brother of Olympic gold medal gymnast Simone Biles has been charged over a triple-homicide on New Year's Eve in Cleveland. Tevin M. Biles-Thomas was arrested on Thursday at Fort Stewart in Georgia over the fatal shooting at an AirBnB rental that left three men dead eight months ago. The 24-year-old, who is on active duty in the U.S. Army, has been charged with murder, voluntary manslaughter, felonious assault, and perjury. The shooting occurred shortly before midnight on New Year's Eve at an Airbnb rental apartment above a pizza shop in Cleveland's Brooklyn Centre neighborhood. Police say a fight broke out when uninvited guests arrived at a party being thrown in the apartment. Biles-Thomas is accused of opening fire on the group. Devaughn Gibson, 23, DelVaunte Johnson, 19, and Toshon Banks, 21, were found dead at the scene when police arrived. 
They each suffered multiple gunshot wounds. Two others were injured in the shooting, including a 21-year-old man who was shot in the back of the head and a 23-year-old woman who was shot in the arm. Police said the shooter or shooters had fled by the time they arrived and no weapons were recovered at the scene. Biles-Thomas is the brother of four-time Olympic gold medal gymnast Simone Biles. She has not yet commented on her brother's arrest. In a tweet shortly after news of the arrest broke, she wrote: 'eating my feelings don’t talk to me'. Her brother Biles-Thomas went to high school in Cleveland and is currently in the U.S. Army. Biles-Thomas is so far the only person to be charged over the shooting. It is not yet clear what investigative steps led homicide detectives to suspect Biles-Thomas some nine months after the shooting. 'The relentless persistence of Cleveland police homicide detectives helped secure an indictment in this case,' Cuyahoga County Prosecutor O'Malley said.' It is through their hard work that we can begin to seek justice for these victims.' A Cuyahoga County Grand Jury returned an indictment on the following counts: Three counts of first-degree murder, three counts of second-degree murder, three counts of voluntary manslaughter, five counts of felonious assault and one count of perjury. 
He was taken into custody on Thursday in Georgia and is being held without bond there at the Liberty County Jail pending extradition to Cleveland. It was not immediately clear whether Biles-Thomas had an attorney to speak on his behalf. He is due to appear in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court for arraignment on September 13.

Wicklow primary school bans the use of smartphones.

A primary school in Wicklow has banned the use of smartphones on their grounds. St Cronan's in Bray said they carried out a survey in June with parents who voted overwhelmingly in favor of banning smartphones. More than 91% of parents voted in favor of the ban. The school said that basic mobile phones are allowed but they must be switched off at all times in the school.We reopen tomorrow, Thursday 29th Aug at 8.40am. We hope that the boys have had a good holiday and are ready for the new year. A reminder to parents to label EVERYTHING with your child's name. Please also note that smartphones are no longer permitted in St. Cronan's following a survey in June where 91.2% of parents voted for a ban on smartphones. Basic mobile phones for calls and texts are allowed but must be switched off at all times in school. A number of reports over the past five years have linked smartphone use to increasing rates of depression, anxiety, and suicide. While in the classroom, the presence and use of smartphones have been found to result in lower productivity, grades, and overall performance. France has recently introduced a ban on smartphones in schools for children under 15s and other countries are debating similar legislation.

Bamboo brushes and eco-friendly floss: 5 products for more sustainable oral care.

Very clean? Pretty clean? Clean enough, tbh? Either way, it doesn't really matter. We're not here to talk about hygiene. Well, not entirely. We're here to talk sustainability - with some hygiene thrown in for good measure. Saving the planet is all the rage these days, and so it should be. And while most of us are making little changes here and there to live more eco-friendly lives, our oral care regimes are often overlooked when it comes to sustainable living. But they don't have to be. There's a tonne of glorious sustainable oral hygiene products out there at the moment, all waiting to clean our mouths in the most natural, eco-friendly way possible. Here's five of them we're fairly fond of at the moment. As the world's most sold bamboo toothbrush, the Humble Brush has been making dental care that bit more eco-friendly since, well, people stopped wanting to clean their teeth with plastic. Made from 100 percent biodegradable, sustainably-grown bamboo, the product will clean your teeth just as well as your regular old toothbrush - except it's better because you're helping the environment. There are countless brands of bamboo brush out there, but the Humble Brush is a decent shout because of its strong and durable nylon bristles that aren't as hard as other toothbrushes - and its fully recycled packaging. Each product sold by the company also contributes to a child in need project so, you know, a decent enough purchase

Yes, the idea of cleaning your teeth with charcoal doesn't seem logical, but it's actually a stellar way to bring some whiteness back to your smile without being abrasive. This brand, Georganics, uses a peroxide-free activated charcoal formulation along with organic peppermint essential oils to clean your teeth. It's non-foaming so you need to apply it with a bamboo spatula, but a small jar (60ml) should last about one month if used twice daily. Ever wondered what in the world you could possibly need that plastic covering on your floss for? Nothing. Literally nothing.Which is why a good few sustainable brands have been dropping it entirely and instead of selling their floss the way it should be sold: plastic-free and with a bit of cardboard around it. The packaging of Humble's dental floss acts as its dispenser, meaning that you're using every part of the product before you discard it. The floss also comes in cinnamon flavor. Divine.
These days, chewing gum doesn't necessarily scream oral care. We buy it for something to chomp on, something to curb the boredom or something to take away the vague smell of our breath that will no doubt return almost immediately. However, this is a special kind of chewing gum that is actually good for your teeth: natural chewing gum. Made from chicle, a natural gum base from the Sapodilla tree, this gum doesn't contain any artificial flavors or sugar, meaning that it's actually good for you. And good for the planet too. Sound.

A lot of conventional mouthwashes can be irritating to some people's skin, which is less than ideal when all you want is to have some clean, fresh breath. Thankfully, an alternative does exist in the form of Georganics mouthwash tablets, as sold on Green Outlook Ireland. The 180 tablets come in a glass bottle and are made from natural and non-toxic ingredients, with fluoride, glycerine, and an SLS free formula to help restore a healthy pH balance. You'll get about three months out of the bottle too, so it's not half bad value either.

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