Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Losing My Religion

Karl Wilder 08/19/14 12:54 AM ET

When I was a little boy, I was taught to love Jesus. Jesus would save me from sin and guarantee my place in heaven.

Early on my mother's husband "Bob" gave me a picture of Jesus with a wooden frame. At the time I did not realize that it was a cheap bit of laminated crap. I loved my blond Jesus with a beard who was going to save me from suffering.

Except he didn't. I don't remember the first time Bob hit me. My life was suffering. Our entire family suffered. When the abuse was not physical it was verbal, mental and all-consuming.

I learned the commandments and the Lord's prayer. I went to Sunday school. I went to Lutheran grade school, and always I prayed.

"God please make him stop. Please! I will do anything, I will pray more and go to church every day."

I believed harder and harder and harder.

In the first grade, I had access to a large library of books and magazines and a teacher I very much liked. I asked Mrs. Johnson why kids were starving all over the world.

She told me that God wanted to take them home to him to live in heaven so they could eat as much as they wanted.

Not satisfied with the answer I asked the pastor.

"If you have faith you can move mountains, you need to pray for them."

And I prayed.

I shared a bedroom with three brothers and I went into our large closet, sat on the floor and prayed.

I told God how much faith I had and how I believed mountains could move and please, stop the starvation and make Bob love me, and stop.

I listened for the voice of god and prayed every day.

Life did not change.

I was often at the doctor, a slight endocrine disorder was grossly magnified by stress. I was over-treated, over-medicated and as a result often sick. I remember asking Dr. Ulrich if I would die, hoping that I would. I wanted so badly to go to heaven.

It might have been then I was put into therapy. The memories and episodes of abuse tumble all together. I remember in a doctor's session putting the doll of Bob in the oven. I put my eldest brother in as well. He had chosen to align with the abuser and be abusive to me as well.

If I could not die I wanted them dead.

If Jesus did not want me in heaven, I would pray differently. I began to pray that he would take my brother and Bob. Let them live in heaven and I could live on earth with the remainder of my family.

Life did not change.

That is not to say there were not good times. I loved playing cards with my mother and sister and making them laugh. I would do funny voices and do everything I could to bring the mood up.

I adored my grandparents and the families of several of my friends. I liked food and cooking and cookbooks.

So I changed my prayers.

I prayed that I would be sent to live with Grandma and Grandpa. I had faith that would move mountains.

Life did not change.

I then prayed to go live with my Aunt Phyllis. She loved me and my mother would visit and I could be happy. Phyllis died from a brain aneurism soon after.

I tried to believe god wanted her in heaven, but could not understand why he hated me so much.

In Minnesota I had hope with Pastor Schweigert. After a particularly bad episode, I called him and begged for his help. He was a pastor and a good Christian.

He called Bob instead, told him that he was head of the house and that he needed to 'deal with me.'

I was in my basement room. I remember him coming down in a rage and little after that.

My mother would try to intervene. "Bob no, Bob stop, Bob please."

And on it went.

I began to think maybe Jesus was not the answer. I think I was 12 when I went to the library and started reading other religious books. From Enke to Jehovah, I read them all. I began to wonder if anyone had the answers.

I finally read the Bible, cover to cover.

The god that was revealed was a horrific and evil creature. He ordered rape, murder, unborn babies being cut out of the stomach of their mothers.

They attacked Midian just as the LORD had commanded Moses, and they killed all the men. All five of the Midianite kings - Evi, Rekem, Zur, Hur, and Reba - died in the battle. They also killed Balaam son of Beor with the sword. Then the Israelite army captured the Midianite women and children and seized their cattle and flocks and all their wealth as plunder. They burned all the towns and villages where the Midianites had lived. After they had gathered the plunder and captives, both people and animals, they brought them all to Moses and Eleazar the priest, and to the whole community of Israel, which was camped on the plains of Moab beside the Jordan River, across from Jericho. (Numbers 31:7-18 NLT)

This is god?

When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl's owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. (Exodus 21:7-11 NLT)

This is god?

Could the Jews not see they were being deluded into going to war and that leaving cooked meat on the alter meant they were cooking for some guy? I guess being told you are "God's chosen' will make you do anything.

And the contradictions were legion.

There is but one God Deut 6:4 There is a plurality of gods Gen 1:26/ Gen 3:22/ Gen 18:1-3/ 1 John 5:7

The Resurrection story had even more contradictions depending on what chapter you read.

Could it be that it was all written by men who could not get their stories straight?

I read more, I read the 'myths' Mithras and Orsis etc. I discovered that the bulk of the Jesus story was lifted and that his image came from Mithras, a white European god.

I refused my confirmation in the Lutheran Church, I stopped praying and things got better.

I found friends and mentors in school who helped me. Judith James, Roger Franzen, Bob Kuhlman, they all gave me the parenting I needed, the strength to go on. Roger Franzen was a Lutheran paster (no longer) who came out of the closet late in life and had the 'Christian' church he was a part of steal his pension after immediate termination.

My mother filed for divorce.

I was no longer praying and Bob was finally gone.

I went to the judge with my brothers and sister and told him why we wanted NO visitation. It was granted.

Was not praying the answer?

I did have one final prayer. I prayed that I would turn out nothing like Bob. I wanted never to fly into a blind rage and hurt someone. I wanted to learn and travel and be nothing like this evil man.

The prayer was answered.

I answered it myself.

by Taboola

Friday, August 15, 2014

Yahoo 8 Tips to Make You an Expert at Pinterest

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Yahoo Tech

Thu, Aug 14 12:00 PM GMT

Photo illustration by Daniel Bean. (via Thinkstock)

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If Facebook is a place to keep up with friends, and Twitter is a place to discuss what’s happening now, Pinterest is where people go to dream of a future filled with delicious casseroles, intricate pillow shams, and idyllic vacation spots.

Perhaps it’s this dreamlike environment that has helped Pinterest grow so quickly. It has more than 70 million users and, according tosome studies, it’s the second-highest traffic-driver to outside websites after Facebook. Its enthusiastic base — an 83 percent female group known as pinners — isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

And for good reason! It’s a great resource for shopping, trip planning, interior design ideas, and general visual inspiration. But you may not be using it to its full potential. Below, a list of useful things you might not have known how to do on Pinterest.

1. Pin faster.
Many enthusiastic pinners probably already know that you can add a Pin It button plug-in to whatever browser you’re using to surf the Web. Then, when you find a cool image, you can immediately add it to one of your boards.

But you might not know that this button allows for a wonderful shortcut. Before pressing the Pin It button, highlight a snippet of text you think works as a description. It’ll automatically be populated into the description section of your pin. That way you don’t have to waste time describing it yourself if you don’t want to.

2. Find everything that’s been Pinned from a specific website.
If you’re curious how well-pinned a website is, you can enter that website into the search bar on the upper-left side of the Pinterest site.

Then it will automatically generate all pins from that source. 

3. Keep your Pinterest profile away from Google.
Say you’ve been searching for something embarrassing on Pinterest. Like, I don’t know,post-apocalyptic survival tools. And maybe you don’t want your profile showing up in Google searches. You can hide your account from major search engines by clicking your account name in the upper-right corner of the screen and selecting Settings.

Then scroll down to Search Privacy and toggle the button to say Yes.

At any time, you can go back and make your profile public again.

4. Keep your recent searches from prying eyes.
In the same vein, if you’re casually browsing $5,000 wedding dresses, you probably don’t want your boyfriend of two weeks to see that. If at any time you want to clear your recent searches, go to Settings and click the Clear Recent Searches option. Your history will go bye-bye.

5. Send direct private messages on Pinterest.
Recently, Pinterest added the option to directly message pins to people inside and outside the social network. It works by hovering your mouse over the image you want to send until a Send button appears at the top.

Once you click it, you’ll have the opportunity to attach a personal message, and then you can choose whom to send it to. You can type the name of someone you follow on Pinterest, attempt to find friends via your other social networks, or email the pin. 

The next time you go to send a pin, the people you contacted most recently will auto-populate when you type in the recipient box. So the friends you communicate with most frequently will be just a tab button away.

6. Edit your notifications.
If one of your pins or boards has become so popular (*hairflip*) that you’ve been inundated with an endless stream of notifications, you can quickly adjust who’s pinging you by going to the double thumbtack icon in the upper-right corner of your screen.

From there, you can see who’s interacting with you on the network. But you can also adjust what notifications you see by clicking on the pen icon in the upper-right corner of the box. 

A message will pop up, allowing you to adjust what you’re alerted for. You can then choose whom you get notifications from.

7. Ensure that Pinterest isn’t tracking your online behavior.
This one all depends on how comfortable you are with the Pinterest gods (aka data engineers) having access to your search information at all times. I, personally, want to keep my daily search habits separate from the time I spend on Pinterest dreaming of a prettier apartment. No matter your preference, you can control how much access Pinterest has by going to Settings.

Once you’re there, scroll down to a section called Personalization. This is where you can control whether Pinterest tracks your search history on the Internet.

Pinterest has a whole blog post dedicated to explaining what it actually does with this information, but to make a long story short, Pinterest uses your Web surfing history to recommend pins from the sites you’ve visited. So perhaps you’re contemplating the purchase of a new pair of boots from Anthropologie. You’ve glanced at them a few times online, but you want to think on it. When you log in to Pinterest, chances are those boots will show up in the Recommended Pins section.

In sum, it’s a good way for brands to stalk you even when you’re not on their pages.

That being said, Pinterest stores your search information for a span of only 30 days. So it’s not quite as sketchy as other online social networks that use this info for more nefarious purposes

8. Map your future vacation.
A lot of people use Pinterest to collect images of dream vacations (even if they might not have the cash in the bank for that plane ticket). The Places tool takes this one step further, allowing you to create a board based on a map, search for things based on a location, and automatically add images in their correct geographic spots.

To make a map-based board, go up to the +button at the top of the screen and selectCreate a board.

You’ll then be asked to fill out the basics of your board: its name, description, and so on. At the Add a map? section, toggle Yes.

Your blank slate will then appear in the form of cutesy cartography. You can start pinning things based on their location by selectingAdd a place.

As you start typing in your search, Pinterest will auto-populate image and business results. If you don’t have a specific place in mind, you could always just search for “art museums near San Francisco” or “sandwich places in Noe Valley.”

Once you pin an image, it’ll show up as an adorable red marker right there on the map. You can float your mouse over it to see more.

And that’s how you pin like a pro. Now go and fill your boards with gorgeous beach sunsets and French macarons. I’ll be here staring at my computer, wishing I could physically live on Pinterest.

Follow Alyssa Bereznak on Twitter or email herhere.

Yahoo Tech


Thursday, August 14, 2014

21 Things Nobody Tells You About Being Depressed So you’re sad all the time and don’t want to do stuff.It’s actually way more complicated than that.


Posted on July 9, 2014, at 2:02 p.m.

Alexis NeddBuzzFeed Staff

1. Most of the things people will say to help you are profoundly and dangerously unhelpful.

Thanks to a plethora of misinformation about what depression actually is, people often seem to think that saying things like "just be happier," "don't be depressed," and "just try harder" are legitimate pieces of advice. They are not.

A.A Milne / Via disney-darling.tumblr.com

2. It physically hurts.

In the human body's least amusing attempt at metaphor, many depressed people report physicalsymptoms like muscle ache, joint pain, and stabbing sensations in the chest. If you are depressed and feeling pain, check with your doctor to discuss possible causes.

Retort / Via abooksofathomless.blogspot.com

3. Asking for help feels counterintuitive.

One of the many lies depression will tell you is that nobody cares about you, so you won't want to "bother" people by reaching out to them. Fight this lie. Wrestle it to the ground. Punch it in the face. Somebody will listen to you.

pablographix / Via Thinkstock

4. Your relationship with food changes to “it’s complicated.”

Whatever moderation there is between "forgetting to eat for a day" and "eating all of the things" just isn't on the menu anymore. Poor eating habits can make depression worse, though, so seek medical help if your diet becomes worrisome for you.

Choreograph / Via Thinkstock

5. Some “friends” might ditch you (and that is OK).

Some of your so-called friends won't know how to be around you and will vanish in the haze. Let them go and keep doing you. It's the people who stay that will make a difference.

Warner Bros. Television / Via giphy.com

6. You feel like you are absolutely losing your mind.

Depression is a shape-shifting mental disorder; it co-manifests with panic attacks, compulsive thoughts and habits, social phobia, and any number of other issues. Remember that you are not "crazy." You are sick and you can get better.

Warner Music / Via youtube.com

7. Everything will start to annoy you. Even you will start to annoy you.

Irritability is a symptom of depression that doesn't get enough attention. Feeling grumpy is just a part of the process, and you shouldn't be made to feel bad about it.

Paramount Pictures / Via vnesateox.blogspot.com

8. Everyday tasks will feel overwhelming.

Something as simple as making a bowl of cereal suddenly has too many steps and now you'refrustrated with yourself and oh dear, don't cry...

Via smosh.com

9. It’s nearly impossible to tell when it’s just your “depression talking.”

Trying to tell your healthy, rational thoughts apart from the stuff that wouldn't cross your mind if you weren't depressed is like scooping only the pee out of a swimming pool, but being able to tell that differenceis an important step on the road to recovery.

Columbia Pictures / Via degrassi.wikia.com

10. Depression will wreak havoc on your sleep schedule.

You can't sleep when you want to, but when you actually have somewhere to be you get knocked out with a completely unplanned, five-hour nap.

mactrunk / Via Thinkstock

11. Depression can also mean not feeling anything at all.

If you're depressed it's assumed that you're sad, but depression can also make you feel numb and/or emotionally exhausted. No matter what other people say, that's still depression; if you feel emotionally numb or blank you should report it to your doctor or therapist.

Gold Circle Films / Via gingygang.wordpress.com

12. It’s incredibly boring.

Imagine that you can only watch one thing on Netflix, and it's an 80-season show with 24-hour episodes. Imagine that you have no interest in this show or its characters or its plot. When you are depressed, your life might feel like that TV show. Try to distract yourself for brief periods of time with anything that will hold your attention and stave off the boredom, however temporary the distraction is.

monkeybusinessimages / Via Thinkstock

13. You’ll feel guilty.

What's worse than being depressed? Feeling like you're a selfish, ungrateful failure for having a disorder you can't control. This is a common depressive thought, and is not true. Cognitive behavioral therapy can help you identify depressive thoughts and emotions (like guilt) and can give you tools to work through these feelings.

NKMandic / Via Thinkstock

14. Probably because people will tell you things that make you feel judged.

Yes, people are starving. Yes, there are people with "real problems." That doesn't make you any less sick.

Monkey Business Images Ltd / Via Thinkstock

15. Your dreams get weird.

Some studies say that as people move through the stages of their depression, the content and quality of their dreams fluctuate.

Legendary Pictures / Via dailypopin.blogspot.com

16. Mirrors become your worst enemy.

Low self-esteem is a symptom of depression, so your mirror can remind you of how much you dislike the way you look or who you are. Sometimes it's best to just cover them up for a few days.

RCA / Via vulture.com

17. Depression will seem like a “logical” state to be in.

Some studies show that depressed people have an unusually realistic worldview, so you might rationalize your depressive thinking ("I am a bad person") as an incontrovertible fact. This is not true, and therapy can help you understand how depression flaws your logic.

Apatow Productions / Via badbooksgoodtimes.com

18. So you will earnestly argue with people over how terrible you are.

"I think you're awesome."

PeteSherrard / Via Thinkstock

19. Trying to reenter society after being depressed for a long time is very awkward.

It might be a while before you feel good around peopleagain, so it's OK to take your time and slowly reintroduce yourself into social situations.

Villiage Roadshow Pictures / Via bitterstar88.tumblr.com

20. You won’t be able to think clearly about your future.

Not only does this nuke your capacity for hope, it also renders meaningless the idea that at some point things will get better. If you feel like this, please take steps to seek medical help or talk to a trusted friend or counselor.

Devonyu / Via Thinkstock

21. Depression will make you feel that you are alone. You are not alone.

If you need information on depression or want to talk about your depression, you can call the Crisis Call Center at any time of the day. Their national number is 1-800-273-8255 and all calls are free of charge.

If you don't like talking on the phone but still want to be heard, forums like the Reddit boards r/depressionand r/anxiety have strong communities of people who may be working through an illness similar to yours.

For more information on your depression, the National Alliance on Mental Illness has up-to-date research in the field of psychology as well as articles and fact sheets on mental illness.

To find a doctor or support group in your area, try searching on the Healthfinder for nearby support groups or use this GoodTherapy online tool to locate therapists in your area.

Color Force / Via hungergamesrpg.skyrock.com

Sunday, August 10, 2014

A Poem by My Good friend, Thomas Batten (DJ SatinB1874)

Emotions of unconditional love.
The emotions going through me,they
are tearing me apart.

I keep wishing they would go away but they only subside & come back just as bad & it's fuckin killing me.

I'm trying so hard to deal with this but at times I'm struggling & now I'm fucking crying again as the emotions wreck my head.

What's happening to me man ?,?
It's so hard & I am lonely,so lonely,
I wish 4 a cuddle to make them go

I'm shutting my eyes and in my head I'm calling on my angels"please make the pain go away."
I start to pray.

A poem by Tam B which is about my hardest 3weeks in my life to date.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Triangle UFO Above Germany Leaves Questions In Its Wake (VIDEO)

Lee Speigel 08/06/14 01:13 PM ET

Tap To Read This Story Fast

When a UFO video seems too good to be true -- is it?

We've pointed out many times how difficult it is to identify hoaxes among UFO photos and videos, and computer technology has just added to the confusion. With the right app or Photoshop elements, even youngsters can create and post real-looking, out-of-this-world UFOs to YouTube faster than you can say, "ET, phone home." But the footage doesn't always hold up under expert scrutiny.

Consider this recent example: A triangular UFO was reportedly videotaped over Kassel, Germany, on June 26 by a man who was taping his son playing in a park, reports theInternational Business Times.

Watch the triangle UFO here.

Scott C. Waring, who runs the UFO Sightings Daily site, thinks it's the genuine article.

"The fact that the person blurred out the face of the kid and didn't get the UFO in the dead center of the video is what causes me to believe this is real," he said. "Also, the lighting and shading on the UFO matches that of the trees and the bars of [the] jungle gym."

But is that analysis enough to give this UFO the seal of approval? Other experts say no.

"There are two giveaway segments" that show the UFO is computer-generated, said Marc Dantonio, chief photo and video analyst for the Mutual UFO Network. "As the object is first seen, you notice that the cameraman shifts the camera up and down a bit. The object should not be affected by this motion at all."

Dantonio, who was featured on last month's Syfy Channel documentary, "Aliens on the Moon: The Truth Exposed," told The Huffington Post in an email that the triangular object in this Germany video should appear to move smoothly through the sky. "Its path, however, indicates anything but. As the camera moves, the object shifts in the sky in direct correlation to the movements of the camera.

"This shows me that this is a CG composition where the UFO flying in the sky was poorly tracked with ground objects. This happens several times," Dantonio wrote.

The cracks in the facade don't end there.

"It walks like a duck, it talks like a duck, but it's not a duck," says former FBI special agent Ben Hansen.

"The video incorporates the image of a classic triangle UFO, which witnesses often report as silently floating across the sky. The videographer got that part right. However, there are several major red flags that tell me this was a hoax," Hansen told HuffPost in an email.

"Although witnesses' reactions can vary greatly when seeing a shocking UFO event, this man appears extremely underwhelmed. I would expect a little more enthusiasm or effort to try and follow the craft when it emerges behind the trees. If he made efforts to follow it, I'd like to see that. We're led to believe that he puts down the camera and casually strolls away."

Hansen agrees with Dantonio that the video is most likely the product of CGI (computer-generated imagery).

"As much time as was spent on getting the movement of the UFO right, the editor was a little lazy on the details of what we call 'rotoscoping,'" Hansen said, describing what is probably the final blow to the video's authenticity. "Going frame by frame -- to tell the software program which objects the UFO needed to pass behind -- it appears they got a little sloppy.

Hansen explains that he magnified and lightened the image, shown below, and it "shows the corner of the UFO accidentally overlapping in front of the playground structure when it was supposed to be passing behind."

When it comes to UFO videos, you can't always believe what you think you're seeing.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Ripped Wound Sterilization Bacon

And I ran
All along
The road
Fresh to eat
Tasty meat
Admit defeat
You could never
Resist the smell
Of fresh kill
The morbid still
Dance upon pleasure
Found not the treasure
A strong blow to the face
Puts consciousness in place
Space the eternal expansion
The destruction of crystal mansions
Here in never.

In the East, Hidden

The Spirit of my Times
Lost yet so sublime
Hidden from the plain
Drilling deeper in the brain
Caught in endless loop death
Stagnant stuffed pet
Conspire about the same
The toys flung to tame
Boys playing for power and land
Lost in the mystery of the sand
Bitter struggle old as time
Push button and rewind

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

DNA study shows yeti is real (sort of) – and Oxford scientist prepares expedition to find it

Results back from first scientific test into Abominable Snowman

'Bigfoot' has been the subject of many hoaxes, such as this April Fool's joke at Mount Everest in 1992 - but has he now been found to exist?


Wednesday 02 July 2014

An Oxford scientist has discovered the world’s first verified DNA evidence that the “yeti” exists – albeit not quite in the monstrous, manlike form of legend.

Two hair samples taken from remote regions of the Himalayas have been found to show a 100 per cent genetic match to a prehistoric polar-bear-like creature that existed more than 40,000 years ago.

The extraordinary find suggests there are bears roaming the mountain range that have not been seen since the Pleistocene period, which experts say may well be “the biological foundation of the yeti legend”.

Bryan Sykes, a geneticist from Oxford University, said that his research was proof enough to start planning an expedition to the Himalayas to capture a “yeti” bear specimen alive.

He told NBC News that his team’s study, published in this week’s issue of the journal Proceedings Of The Royal Society B, should encourage “Bigfoot enthusiasts to go back out into the forest and get the real thing.”

People from around the world answered Prof Sykes’ call to send in hair samples that may or may not be from what he describes as “anomalous primates”.

In the first study of its kind, his team then analysed 36 specimens reported to be yeti, Bigfoot from the US, Almasty from Russia or orang pendek of Sumatra.

The vast majority of the samples turned out to be from easily-explained, modern species, including horses, cows, bears, canines and even one unidentified human.

Oxford University genetics professor Bryan Sykes posing with a prepared DNA sample taken from hair from a Himalayan animal (AP)

But a golden-brown sample from an animal shot by a hunter in the northern region of Ladakh, India, 40 years ago and a reddish-brown hair from a high-altitude bamboo forest in Bhutan both matched the presumed long-lost bear.

Prof Sykes admitted that the study has not yet come across a hidden human-like creature – the Holy Grail of cryptozoologists – but that the anomalous bear was the next best thing.

In pictures: The 12 best debunked myths and fake news stories

In the study, he and his team wrote: “It seems more likely that the two hairs reported here are from either a previously unrecognised bear species, colour variants of Ursus maritimus (polar bear), or U. arctos/U. maritimus hybrids.”

If hybrids, the “yeti” specimens were likely to have been descended from ancient cross-breeding soon after brown and polar bears separated on the path of evolution.

Prof Sykes is writing a book about the link between the samples and the 40,000-year-old bear fossil remains entitled The Yeti Enigma, and said a Himalayan expedition was “the next logical step”.

“We need a live ‘yeti’,” he said.

Caribbean Coral Reefs are Declining


Wednesday 02 July 2014

The existence of most Caribbean coral reefs is threatened over the next 20 years without action to stem dramatic declines, conservationists have warned.

Caribbean corals have dived by more than 50 per cent since the 1970s, and are at just one sixth of their peak, mainly due to the loss of parrotfish and sea urchins which graze on the reefs, a new report shows.

“The rate at which the Caribbean corals have been declining is truly alarming,” said Carl Lundin, director of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), one of the groups behind a new study.

“But this study brings some very encouraging news: the fate of Caribbean corals is not yet beyond our control and there are some very concrete steps that we can take to make them recover,” he added.

Measures such as restoring parrotfish populations and protecting reefs from overfishing and excessive coastal pollution could help reefs recover. They would also make them more resilient to the impacts of climate change, the experts said.

The report, which was put together by the Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) analysed more than 35,000 surveys at 90 Caribbean locations since 1970.

The experts said that while climate change - long thought to be the main culprit in coral degradation - posed a serious threat by making the seas more acidic and causing bleaching of corals, the main cause of declines has been the loss of grazing creatures.

“Even if we could somehow make climate change disappear tomorrow, these reefs would continue their decline,” said Jeremy Jackson, lead author of the report and IUCN’s senior advisor on coral reefs.

“We must immediately address the grazing problem for the reefs to stand any chance of surviving future climate shifts.”

Sea urchins suffered a mass decline from an unidentified disease in 1983 and extreme fishing has pushed parrotfish to the brink of extinction in some areas.

Reefs protected from overfishing, as well as coastal pollution, tourism and coastal development are more resilient to climate change, the report said.

Ayana Johnson, of the Waitt Institute's Blue Halo Initiative which is collaborating with Barbuda in the development of its marine management plan, said: "Barbuda is about to ban all catches of parrotfish and grazing sea urchins, and set aside one third of its coastal waters as marine reserves.

"This is the kind of aggressive management that needs to be replicated regionally if we are going to increase the resilience of Caribbean reefs."

The Caribbean is home to nine per cent of the world's coral reefs, generating £1.75 billion annually from tourism and more than a hundred times more in other goods and services, which 43 million people depend on, the experts said.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

World Cup 2014: Brazil fan dies of heart attack as Neymar penalty wins tense shootout vs Chile


Sunday 29 June 2014

A Brazil fan has died after having a heart attack while watching his team’s penalty shootout victory over Chile in the World Cup.

LIVE: Follow the latest news from Netherlands vs Mexico and Costa Rica vs Greece

The 69-year-old man was in a bar not far from the match itself at the Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte when he fell ill and was taken to hospital.

According to a spokesperson for the state health department, the man was taken to hospital but died two hours later. Officials said he had suffered from high blood pressure and diabetes, the Estado de Minas newspaper reported.

Health officials said that in total they had to treat 98 people during the match, including a 50-year-old woman who also had a heart problem while watching the shootout and a man whose nose was broken in a fight.

Brazil went on to win the game 3-2 on penalties, with the score 1-1 after extra time, and progress to face Colombia in the quarter-finals.

Yet despite the high standard of football on show and the furore around Luis Suarez’s on-field antics, the tournament has seemingly been just as eventful away from the pitch.

In Bogota, Colombia, last night a woman was reportedly killed by a stray bullet fired in celebration for the country’s win against Uruguay.

The mayor of Bogota was forced to issue a statement calling on people to be more careful when celebrating, after a number spilled out into the streets and fired guns into the air.

And it has also emerged that an England fan had a part of his ear “bitten off” during his team’s own match against Uruguay in the group stages.

The fan has made a formal complaint but the attacker, who is thought to be another England fan, has not been identified.