United Kingdom

Charter school students invent disease detecting frangas

Students at Isaac Newton Academy, a UK charter school, have invented a franga that glows in the dark if a STI is detected.

It sounds incredibly futuristic – a glow-in-the-dark condom that changes colour if the wearer has a sexually transmitted infection.

But not only could it soon become a reality, it was invented by a group of 13 and 14 year olds.

Kind of makes your papier-mache-and-baking-soda volcano school project pale in comparison, huh?

Muaz Nawaz, Daanyaal Ali and Chirag Shah, from the Isaac Newton Academy in London, devised the “S.T.EYE.” and submitted it to the TeenTech Awards, where they very deservedly took out first place in the health innovation category.

The competition encourages 11 to 16 year olds to create “technology to make life better, simpler or easier”, and comes with a top prize of NZ$2280 and a trip to Buckingham Palace.    Read more »

Global Warming not coming to UK, mini Ice Age instead

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Bugger, how is this one going to be spun?

Well, it won’t get a mention in the NZ media, unlike other obscure and poorly done research that supports warming.

This research is inconveniently brought to us by one of the lead organisations that writes the IPCC reports and is one of the leading proponents of catastrophic climate change.

Climate experts warn the amount of light and warmth released by the sun is nosediving to levels “not seen for centuries”.

They fear a repeat of the so-called ‘Maunder Minimum’ which triggered Arctic winter whiteouts and led to the River Thames freezing 300 years ago.

The Met Office-led study warns although the effect will be offset by recent global warming, Britain faces years of unusually cold winters.

A spokesman said: “A return to low solar activity not seen for centuries could increase the chances of cold winters in Europe and eastern parts of the United States but wouldn’t halt global warming.

“Return of ‘grand solar minimum’ could affect European and eastern US winters.”

Long episodes of low solar activity were seen during the Maunder Minimum between 1645 and 1715 and the ‘Dalton Minimum’ from 1790 to 1830.

Both periods coincided with colder-than-normal global temperatures earning the title from scientists of “Little Ice Age.”

The latest study, published in Nature Communications, found reduced solar activity will lead to an overall cooling of the Earth of 0.1C.

A much bigger cooling effect is expected for Britain, northern Europe and North America where thermometers could drop by 0.8C.

Amanda Maycock, of the University of Cambridge and National Centre for Atmospheric Science, said: “It’s important that we consider the potential impact of changes in UV output when looking at future climate.”

[…] Read more »

Russell Brand runs from crowd who shout ‘f*** off back to Miliband’

Russell Brand, the hipsters’ hero, has been seen running from a hostile crowd while being yelled at to ‘f*** off back to Miliband’.

This is the moment an angry mob of left-wing protesters turned on self-styled revolutionary Russell Brand as he joined them on an anti-austerity march.

The millionaire comedian had to be held back in the VIP area on Parliament Square as a group screamed ‘f*** off back to Miliband’ – a reference to his backing of Labour at the general election.   Read more »

Britain has twice as many electric car charging points as it actually has electric cars

Unbelievable.

Britain has twice as many taxpayer-funded electric car charging points as it actually has electric cars. I kid you not.

This is the folly of subsidies rewarding stupidity.

The Government and local councils have splashed millions of pounds of taxpayers’ cash on building thousands of electric car charging points that barely anyone uses.

Ministers confirmed that public money had been used to construct a network of of 57,567 publicly-funded charging points as of the end of the last financial year.

The figure is roughly double the number electric cars actually registered for use on the road in Britain – around 24,500 as of December 2014, according to the Office for Low Emission Vehicles.

Despite the rarity of electric cars, there are now more than six times as many charging points in Britain as there are petrol stations.

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If UK figures can be believed there are over 59,300 men who want sex with children in NZ

Graham Capill, convicted sex offender and former leader of Christian Heritage party

Graham Capill, convicted sex offender and former leader of Christian Heritage party

A recent study in the UK of by the National Crime Agency suggests that 1 in 35 men want child sex. If we extrapolate those figures for New Zealand based on the latest census data that means that there are 59,388 potential kiddy fiddlers running around out there.

Up to 750,000 men living in Britain may have an interest in having sex with children, the Government has been warned.

A shocking analysis by the National Crime Agency reveals that about one in 35 adult males poses a potential risk of being a child abuser or of seeking out child sex images online.

Horrifically, as many as 250,000 men may be sexually attracted to pre-pubescent children – defined as those under 12 – according to the findings disclosed exclusively to The Mail on Sunday.

Phil Gormley, the deputy director general of the National Crime Agency (NCA), said: ‘We are starting to get a real sense of the scale.’

He also warned that paedophiles are so numerous that ‘the reality is that we are all living not far away from one’.

Calling for an urgent new approach to safeguard children from potential abusers before they strike, he said: ‘If all we have is arrest and incarceration that will not help them come forward.’   Read more »

How about a benefit cap for New Zealand?

Lindsay Mitchell discusses the merits of a benefit cap for households, like that being implemented in the UK.

A benefit cap places “a cap on the total amount of benefit that working-age households can get so that, broadly, households on out-of-work benefits will no longer get more in welfare payments than the average weekly wage for working households.”

More impending  welfare cuts in the UK include the possibility of :

– reducing the benefit cap further

– stopping under 25s claiming a housing benefit

– limiting tax credits to the first two children only

Items 2 and 3 could be implemented in NZ. The first is trickier.

The benefit cap  applies to the total amount of benefit going into one household. There is no benefit cap in NZ so it can’t be reduced.   Read more »

What a good idea, the next logical step is a TABOR

George Osborne is looking at legislating for surpluses.

George Osborne is to announce a return to the public finances of the Victorian age, with plans for permanent budget surpluses designed to cut the national debt and to make life uncomfortable for the Labour party.

The chancellor will use his annual Mansion House speech on Wednesday to exploit the political advantage of the Conservative victory in the general election with a “new settlement” that would allow the government to borrow only in exceptional circumstances.

Labour, still shaken by the scale of its defeat last month, will be forced to decide whether it wants to back the proposal that tax revenues should cover spending on both infrastructure and the day-to-day running of government when parliament votes on Osborne’s tougher approach to the public finances later this year.

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The most ungrateful migrant in the world

Not many people get a second chance in life, but some get spectacular chances.

And then they blow it.

South London’s leafy district of Kennington is one of the city’s best-kept secrets. In this quiet area famous for its Georgian architecture, the average house price is more than £1 million.

It is full of young families, good schools, council housing and NHS doctors’ surgeries. Residents are proud of its strong, diverse, multi-cultural community spirit.

So one would imagine that when, in 2008, teenager Alaa Esayed found refuge here with her family from Iraq — where they had faced persecution, suicide bombings, terrorist attacks and constant fear — she would have treasured her new haven.

Offered sanctuary, housing, free education and healthcare, she and her family were at last being given an opportunity to thrive and prosper.

Instead, Esayed, who is now 22, used their Kennington home as a base from which to launch a jihadist hate campaign that has seen her dubbed the Twitter Terrorist.

From her bedroom, she posted images to Twitter of beheadings, mutilated corpses and any atrocity she could lay her hands on to promote the jihadi cause — 45,600 tweets in total, and an average of 58 a day. Read more »

David Clark doesn’t get it

David Clark is one of those genius politicians who thinks that social media will win it for them.

Consequently he blathers on all day on Facebook and Twitter.

But he just doesn’t get it.

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Bludging Greek Ratbags Tell Creditors to “Get their Act Together”

Apparently it is all the creditors’ fault that the Greeks have a tax system that doesn’t work, have been on the bludge for years and cannot afford to pay it back.

Yanis Varoufakis, the Greek finance minister, said on Tuesday that the country’s creditors must “get their act together” as loan deadlines approach for the embattled country.

The government has until Friday to pay public sector salaries, a week before the first of a string of repayments to the International Monetary Fund, totalling around €1.6bn (£1.1bn) in June alone, must be paid.

Nikos Voutsis, the Greek minister of the interior, said on Sunday that “this money will not be given and is not there to be given”. But on Tuesday Mr Varoufakis insisted that “we will make the payment because I have no doubt that we will have an agreement”.

The euro slipped by more than 0.7pc against the dollar, as traders digested these conflicting messages from the country’s left-wing Syriza officials.

Kit Juckes, of Societe Generale, said: “The Greek government will need some form of deal in order to release further funds if it is to avoid missing payments to the IMF in June.”

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