theguardian.com
Cladding for Grenfell Tower was cheaper, more flammable option
Exclusive: Omnis Exteriors asked to supply cladding that was £2 cheaper per square metre than fire-resistant version, investigation finds
By Ian Sample

The fireproofed version would have cost an extra £5,000. For the want of £5,000 at least 30 are dead and 70 missing. £50 for a working class life. 

theguardian.com
Student who stabbed boyfriend may avoid jail as it would ‘damage her career’
Aspiring surgeon Lavinia Woodward admits attack but judge defers sentencing because of her ‘extraordinary’ talent
By Caroline Davies

An Oxford University student who stabbed her boyfriend with a bread knife may not go to jail because it could damage her prospects of a medical career, a court has heard.

Aspiring heart surgeon Lavinia Woodward, 24, punched and stabbed her boyfriend during an alcohol-and-drug-fuelled row at Christ Church College. She admitted unlawfully wounding the Cambridge University student, who she met on the dating app Tinder.

Judge Ian Pringle QC, sitting at Oxford crown court, said he would take an “exceptional” course and defer sentence for four months, hinting that Woodward will not be jailed because of her talent. “It seems to me that if this was a one-off, a complete one-off, to prevent this extraordinary able young lady from not following her long-held desire to enter the profession she wishes to would be a sentence which would be too severe,” he said.

“What you did will never, I know, leave you, but it was pretty awful, and normally it would attract a custodial sentence, whether it is immediate or suspended,” he said.

Woodward, who lives in Milan, Italy, with her mother, stabbed her then-boyfriend in the leg after punching him in the face. She then hurled a laptop, glass and jam jar at him during the attack on 30 September last year, the court heard. She was in court to hear the judge’s comments.

The court was told that Christ Church would allow her to return in October because she “is that bright” and has had articles published in medical journals.

Mitigating, James Sturman QC said his client’s dreams of becoming a surgeon were “almost impossible” as her conviction would have to be disclosed. She had had a very troubled life and was abused by a previous boyfriend, he said.

theguardian.com
Squatters turn oligarch's empty London property into homeless shelter
Vast £15m home bought by Russian Andrey Goncharenko, who wants to add a pool and leisure centre, is housing about 25 people
By Diane Taylor

There must be loads of properties like this in Kensington. 2,000 homes have been destroyed in the Grenfell fire - if ever there was a need to repossess the idle luxury flats of speculators it’s now. 

theguardian.com
Robert Mercer: the big data billionaire waging war on mainstream media
With links to Donald Trump, Steve Bannon and Nigel Farage, the rightwing American computer scientist is at the heart of a multimillion-dollar propaganda network
By Carole Cadwalladr

This is a true threat to democracy and totally out of controlled and unchecked. The war on truth and the systematic brainwashing of the American Electorate by foreign operators.

theguardian.com
The real Q is a woman, British chief spy reveals
Sir Alex Younger, speaking at Women in IT Awards, says James Bond films give MI6 a global profile – but their stereotypes are not entirely accurate
By Ewen MacAskill

Although she was not identified by name, MI6’s head of operational technology is a woman. This news came as part of a keynote speech that MI6’s chief, Alex Younger, gave to a group of women in technology, encouraging them to join the agency:

“If any of you would like to join us … the real-life Q is looking forward to meeting you and I’m pleased to report that the real-life Q is a woman.”

3

Protesters take to London streets over Theresa May’s handling of Grenfell Tower fire

  • Armed with signs stamped with “JUSTICE FOR GRENFELL” and “NEVER AGAIN,” protesters took to the streets of London on Friday afternoon to call for justice for the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire.
  • The blaze, which began in the early hours of June 14, claimed at least 30 lives, with dozens more reportedly still unaccounted for.
  • On Friday, protesters flooded the streets to demonstrate against the British government’s response to the disaster, with particular ire reserved for Prime Minister Theresa May. Read more (6/16/17)
4

Muslims preparing for Ramadan fast reportedly saved lives in London Grenfell Tower fire

  • “Thank God for Ramadan.” Those are the words from a witness who told reporters that Muslim boys knocked on the doors of neighbors to warn them that Grenfell Tower was on fire.
  • “Muslim boys saved people’s lives,” the unidentified woman told HuffPost UK. “They ran around knocking on people’s doors. Thank God for Ramadan.”
  • The fire on Wednesday morning was deadly, killing at least 17 people and leaving about 18 in critical care and 79 others seeking treatment at five different hospitals. 
  • According to HuffPost UK, hundreds of residents had to evacuate the 27-story, 120-apartment building after 1:15 a.m.
  • Muslims observing the holy month of Ramadan fast from dawn to sunset. Many Muslims stay up late, or throughout the night, to perform extra prayers and recite the Qu'ran. 
  • Some also wake up in the middle of the night to prepare their pre-fast meal called suhoor. Read more (6/15/17)

follow @the-movemnt

theguardian.com
Cities should be studied as evolutionary hotspots, says biologist
Animals and birds evolve more quickly in urban environments than in remote habitats, Cheltenham science festival is told
By Hannah Devlin

Foxes loitering around rubbish bins and pigeons roosting in train stations: urban animals are widely regarded as the dregs of the natural world.

However, according to biologist Simon Watt, cities represent some of the world’s hotspots for evolution and behavioural adaptation. Speaking at the Cheltenham science festival, Watt, who is founder of the Ugly Animal Preservation Society, said: “The ice caps are melting, the rainforest is shrinking, the one environment that is growing is cities. If we’re going to look for evolutionary shifts right now in our world, the place to look is cities.”

In his talk, Watt cited a host of examples of how the urban environment is prompting new genetic shifts and unexpected behaviours. A proportion of black cap warblers, which used to migrate to Morocco or southern Spain, have shifted their route to Britain where urban heat islands and garden bird feeders allow them to survive at more northerly latitudes than was previously possible.

“The ones that come to Britain are starting to get shorter wings – better for manoeuvrability, worse for long flights – and longer beaks, which are better to get through the wee bars of garden bird feeders, although worse for things like fruits and berries.”

Birds in cities often sing at a higher pitch, perhaps to be better heard against higher levels of background noise. Photograph: Sue Tranter RSPB Images/PA Wire

even more british memes (yay)

• for bonzer car insurance deals, girls get onto sheilas’ wheels

• justine littlewood

• safari Oleg

• the coronation street tram crash

• “please place item in the bagging area”

• 5p BAG CHARGE?¿¿??¿?

• “friend”

• 3 day summer

• UKIP

• bus stop wanker

• you buy one you get one free. SAID YA BUY ONE YA GET ONE FREE

• “I’m gonna knock *knock knock* on wood”

• the Isle of fernandooooooos

• woolworths

• Jeremy Clarkson getting sacked

• buttery biscuit base

• Jezza Kyle

• Nigel farage’s teeth

• the dfs sofa sale

theguardian.com
Black and mixed race people in London more likely to be Tasered
Figures show 40% of cases where stun guns used since 2014 involved people of black or mixed white and black ethnicities
By Damien Gayle

“But police brutality is only an American thing! BLM is irrelevant in the UK!”

Be careful, police over here like to make up crime and falsely claim that their suspect was armed as well. 

theguardian.com
NHS hospitals across England hit by large-scale cyber-attack
Many hospitals having to divert emergency patients, with doctors reporting messages demanding money
By Alexandra Topping

Today (12/05/17), NHS computer systems in several hospitals have been hacked, forcing entire hospitls to shut down all their systems and driving already struggling hospitals into crisis.

If you do this, then you are the textbook definition of a ‘terrible person’. Instead of using your talents for good, or pointless glory, you’ve decided to attack hospitals. The places people go when they are sick, or dying. You actively compromised emergency care for thousads upon thousands of people. Where doctors and ures are already stuggling to keep people safe and look after patients, you have mae their job much harder and put their patients at risk.

This is affecting real people, people I know. People whose personal details are now also compromised because they work for these hospitals. This is very real, and it may well be having ery serious implications for the patients being cared for at affected hospitals. If you bring down a company, you affect profits but life goes on. If you bring down a hospital, people could die.

If you can’t help save lives, the very least you could do is not get in the bloody way of those of us who do. Yes, I’m absolutely livid. I don’t care if you thought it woul be funny. I don’t are if you wanted to make a point. I dont’t care if you thought the information would be lucrative.

If you are ever involved in something like this, then you have blood on your hands, and there is never any possible justification for this kind of behaviour.


theguardian.com
Manchester Arena attack: what we know so far
The events around Manchester Arena have been fast moving and confusing. Here is what we know so far.
By Kevin Rawlinson

Manchester Arena attack: what we know so far

The events around Manchester Arena have been fast moving and confusing. Here is what we know so far

Kevin Rawlinson

A suspected terror attack hit a pop concert in Manchester on Monday evening, with many dead and dozens injured. Here is what we know so far:

  • Police have confirmed that at least 19 people were killed in an explosion at an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena. 
  • Police say the explosion is being “treated as a terrorist incident until we have further information”.
  • Officers said that a further 50 people were injured amid reports of at least one explosion that hit the venue as the concert was finishing.
  • The blast was reported to have hit the foyer of the building at about 10:30pm, British Transport police said. Police say they received a call about the incident at 10.33.
  • Manchester Arena said the incident took place “outside the venue in a public space”
  • Multiple witnesses said they heard an explosion, with one telling the Guardian the blast shook the whole building, before “everyone screamed and tried to get out”.
  • Victims have been taken to six hospitals across the Manchester area.
  • Large areas around the arena have been sealed off and Victoria Station has been closed and is expected to be closed throughout Tuesday.
  • Greater Manchester Police have carried out a “controlled explosion’’ in the Cathedral Gardens area but the item destroyed was not suspicious.
  • Prime Minister Theresa May has said her thoughts are with the victims and
    families of those affected in “what is being treated by the police as an
    appalling terrorist attack”.
  • A meeting of the Cobra government emergency committee will meet at 9am Tuesday
  • Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron have expressed their sympathies for the victims.
  • Around 21,000 people are reported to have been at the concert at the time of the explosion.
  • Police have issued a number for people to call if they are concerned about relatives or loved ones: +44 0161 856 9400


The emergency number is +44 0161 856 9400. 

The Grenfell tower fire is so devastating for not only its likely death toll, but also because of the sheer negligence that’s being purported when on several occasions there’s been grave warnings. Investigation aside, incidents like this can be terrible reminders of the human cost when empathy is not extended, and when the consideration of wealth is more important than the safety of tenants. So if in fact the Grenfell fire bears out what was warned all along, it should be an indictment on the greed of capitalism and illuminate the contrast of who puts up with what at the expense of what could be their lives. And I hope the weight of justice is so punitive of those who could even go to sleep at night knowingly putting families in danger. My condolences to the victims and their families. The value of lives shouldn’t be determined on the whims of what a market deems to be the cheapest option.

theguardian.com
Why men use prostitutes
The reasons why many men pay for sex are revealed in the interviews that make up a major new piece of research
By Julie Bindel

This entire thing should be a must-read for anyone who has the standard liberal feminist stance on ~sex workers~ and their ~career choices,~ or for any radical feminists who are looking for yet more evidence that prostitution is a degradation and that johns are scum. 

Some choice excerpts:

  • “[O]f 700 men interviewed […] just over half were either married or in a relationship with a woman.”

  • [One participant] said: “I want my ideal prostitute not to behave like one,” he said, “to role-play to be a pretend girlfriend, a casual date, not business-like…”

  • “I asked [one participant] how often he thought the women he paid enjoyed the sex. ‘I don’t want them to get any pleasure,’ he told me. ‘I am paying for it and it is her job to give me pleasure. If she enjoys it I would feel cheated.’”

  • “When asked what would end ­prostitution, one interviewee laughed and said, ‘Kill all the girls.’”

  • “Almost half said they ­believed that most women in prostitution are victims of pimps ("the pimp does the ­psychological raping of the woman,” explained one), lured, tricked, or trafficked. But they still continued to visit them.”

  • “One of the most interesting findings was that many believed men would “need” to rape if they could not pay for sex on demand.”

  • “Visiting an area where prostitution is legal or openly advertised [such as Amsterdam or Thailand] had given them a renewed dedication to buying sex when they returned to the UK.”

  • “[One participant] said: ‘Look, men pay for women because he can have whatever and whoever he wants. Lots of men go to prostitutes so they can do things to them that real women would not put up with.’”

Emphasis added.

The johns interviewed were a very foul mixture of “the girls don’t even pretend to like me, it’s all robotic and mechanical :( :( :(” + “I buy access to these women so I can treat them like dirt and i want them to know it.” One of the johns interviewed even said a prostituted woman asked him to help her, said she had been tricked and brought to London on false pretenses, but he just had sex with her and left because she might have been lying to him. 

I mean… if anyone needs any more proof that men who buy women hate us, don’t care for us, don’t care about anything except their own feelings and their own orgasms, JUST ASK THE JOHNS. They tell on themselves all the damn time but for some reason certain people don’t want to hear it.