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News of the Weird 2/23/12

by Chuck Shepherd
GOVERNMENT IN ACTION! Apparently, not only will there be fewer overall resources for disabled people in Greece (due to government austerity), but the resources will be spread over a larger number of recipients. The Labor Ministry in January expanded the category of eligible “disabled” (with reduced-amount pay-ments) to include pyromaniacs, compulsive gamblers, fetishists, sadomasochists, pedophiles, exhibitionists and kleptomaniacs. The National Confederation of Disabled People said the changes would inevitably reduce funds available for the blind and the crippled and other traditional categories of need.

The Buffalo, N.Y. school system continues to cover all costs for cosmetic surgery for teachers. The benefit was established in the calmer 1970s, and no one, it seems, anticipated the facelift and liposuction crazes that subsequently developed. The annual expense in recent years, for about 500 benefit-takers a year, has been from continues to cover all costs for cosmetic surgery for teachers. The benefit was established in the calmer 1970s, and no one, it seems, anticipated the facelift and liposuction crazes that subsequently developed. The annual expense in recent years, for about 500 benefit-takers a year, has been from $5 million to $9 million (equivalent to the average salaries of at least 100 teachers). The teachers’ union said it is willing to give up the benefit in a new collective bargaining agree- the incentive of teachers to negotiate such a contract (in that the current, highly lucrative contract remains in force until replaced).

GREAT ART! But, Why? (1) Two British designers (who claim they had the idea independently and learned of the other only after they finished) recently produced elegant pieces using parts from a 2012 Ford Focus. Judy Clark made a dress and a biker jacket adorned with car keys, radio and dashboard components, seat covers, a speedometer and red taillights. Katherine Hawkins created a necklace using dials, springs, buttons, seat materials and instrument panel switches. (2) Swiss artist Christoph Buchel has now secured local permits to bury a Boeing 727 38 feet under
a patch of California’s Mojave Desert, near Bakersfield. Visitors will take a tunnel down in order to tour the 153-foot-long plane.

POLICE REPORT Police officers are of course generally forbidden to engage in sex acts in order to gather evidence. Thus, a scandal erupted in the U.K. in January when The Guardian revealed that two undercover officers had fathered children (to enhance their credibility) while infiltrating protest groups beginning in the 1980s. After the two women learned in late 2011 who their kids’ fathers really were, they filed lawsuits against the responsible police agencies. (In Sydney, Australia, a state contractor operated under no such restriction when it hired a brothel inspector in January. Brothels are legal and are providing sex illegally, the inspector can testify from first-hand knowledge.)

Mayor Jim Preacher of the town of Norway, S.C., was pulled over by a state trooper in January for speeding. Preacher was unable to convince the trooper that his speeding was necessary in the performance of a mayoral duty, and their encounter apparently ended mayor turned on his own blue lights, chased the trooper down and accused the trooper
of speeding. (Norway disbanded its police department last year, and a question remains whether the mayor has police powers.)

THE PRICE IS RIGHT: (1) Ms. Khadijah Baseer was arrested in Los Angeles in January on suspicion of prostitution. According to several men, Baseer had opened their car doors in the oral sex in exchange for Chicken McNuggets. (2) Misty Kullman, 25, was arrested for prostitution in Shelby, N.C., in January after police stopped a man who said Kullman performed an act for the agreed-upon price of $6. The man said he paid Kullman with a $2 bill, three $1’s and coins.

From Universal Press Syndicate Chuck Shepherd’s News Of The Weird © 2012 Chuck Shepherd