The Latest: Hawaii lava flow may cross highway within hours

VOLCANO, Hawaii (AP) — The Latest on the eruption of Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano (all times local):

3:45 p.m.

Hawaii County civil defense officials are warning residents that lava may cross a highway in the coming hours.

Officials say a flow is less than a mile (kilometer) away from Highway 137 in the Big Island’s Puna district where lava has oozed out of fissures in the ground.

At the flow’s current speed Saturday afternoon, officials estimate it may cross the highway in the next several hours.

Before Friday, lava was just spattering up and collecting at the edges of the fissures. On Friday afternoon, the flow ramped up. The flow crossed a road, isolating a handful of residents, including some who needed to be airlifted to safety. On Saturday morning, it was 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) from the ocean and advancing at a rate of 300 yards (274 meters) per hour.

Officials are warning people about something called laze, if lava enters the ocean.

Laze is created when hot lava hits the ocean, sending hydrochloric acid and steam with fine glass particles into the air.


12:30 p.m.

Two fissures that opened up in a rural Hawaii community have merged to produce faster and more fluid lava.

Scientists say the characteristics of lava oozing from fissures in the ground has changed significantly as new magma mixes with decades-old stored lava.

Before Friday, lava was just spattering up and collecting at the edges of the fissures. On Friday afternoon, the flow ramped up and crossed a road. On Saturday morning, it was 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) from the ocean and advancing at a rate of 300 yards (274 meters) per hour.

Lava has been oozing out of fissures in Big Island neighborhoods for two weeks, claiming at least 44 structures.

Kilauea volcano is also affecting other neighboring areas because of ash that has been spewing out during explosions at the summit.


10 a.m.

Scientists say a wide lava flow that crossed a road in a Hawaii neighborhood continues to be active and is advancing at rates up to 300 yards (274 meters) per hour.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists say eruption of Kilauea’s lava increased Friday and continues to do so Saturday.

Three people stuck in a rural neighborhood where lava is flowing have made it out.

Emergency workers had planned to rescue them by helicopter Saturday morning. Hawaii County spokeswoman Janet Snyder says two got out on their own and one was evacuated by air.

Officials warn that residents below the flow need to prepare to evacuate if necessary.

Lava has been oozing out of fissures in the Big Island neighborhoods for two weeks, claiming at least 44 structures.


7:55 a.m.

Slow-moving lava has destroyed four homes near a Big Island neighborhood that has already lost several structures in the wake of volcanic activity.

Hawaii County Civil Defense reported Saturday that fissures near Lanipuna Gardens keep erupting, leading to a lava flow.

Officials say some residents are being told to prepare to voluntarily evacuate if lava threatens a major highway.

A short-lived eruption several hours earlier spewed out an ash cloud from Kilauea volcano’s summit. The National Weather Service says the ash plume reached as high as 7,000 feet (2,133 meters).

A rural subdivision of 40 homes below the volcano became isolated by lava on Friday, prompting four people to be evacuated by helicopter.


5:30 a.m.

Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano shot out a small steam explosion overnight that resulted in a towering cloud of ash.

The U.S. Geological Survey reports the short-lived eruption at the volcano’s summit occurred just before midnight Saturday.

According to the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, the ensuing ash cloud reached up to 10,000 feet (3,048 meters).

Scientists say more explosions that could spawn even minor amounts of ashfall could happen any time.

Officials are currently assessing the threat from fast-moving lava that has isolated a rural subdivision of 40 homes below the Big Island volcano. Four people have already been evacuated by helicopter.


8:10 p.m.

Fast-moving lava has crossed a road and isolated about 40 homes in a rural subdivision below Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano, forcing at least four people to be evacuated by county and National Guard helicopters.

Hawaii County Civil Defense said Friday that police, firefighters and National Guard troops were securing the area of the Big Island and stopping people from entering.

The homes were isolated in the area east of Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens — two neighborhoods where lava has destroyed 40 structures, including 26 homes, over the past two weeks.

Officials were assessing how many people were still in the newly threatened area. They were advising people to shelter in place and await further instructions.


7:30 p.m.

Hawaii officials warned residents that fast-moving lava was approaching an area near homes that were previously destroyed by eruptions from Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano.

Hawaii County Civil Defense said Friday police, firefighters and National Guard troops were securing the area of the Big Island and stopping people from entering.

About 40 homes were isolated in the newly affected area east of Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens — two neighborhoods where lava has destroyed 40 structures, including 26 homes, over the past two weeks.

Officials were using helicopters to assess how many people were still in the newly threatened area.

County officials have been encouraging residents in the district to prepare for potential evacuations. The county is now asking them to stay put and wait for further instructions.

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Venezuela investigates Colombian largest private bank Banesco in cross-border currency crackdown

bolivar Venezuela currency


More than 1,000 bank accounts have been frozen in 19 banks and 105 people arrested for illegal currency trading. 90% of the accounts belong to private bank Banesco.

Venezuelan authorities have launched a probe into Colombian private bank Banesco as part of an operation targeting currency exchange and speculation networks on the border with Colombia.

In recent days, police have arrested 105 suspects and frozen about US$4 million in bank deposits as part of the ongoing investigation.

Venezuelan Vice President Tareck El Aissami announced that 1,133 bank accounts had been frozen in 19 banks, belonging to people linked with the illegal trade in bolivares – Venezuela’s national currency – who buy and sell on the border with Colombia.

Banesco, Venezuela’s biggest private bank, held about 90 percent of this money and is now the subject of a formal investigation by authorities into their potential complicity in illicit currency exchange networks.

El Aissami also accused Colombia’s government of protecting the “mafia” organizations trafficking bolivares, which affects the availability of cash within the country, in an attempt to “destabilize and boycott the Venezuelan economy” in order to topple President Nicolas Maduro.

“All these corruption networks linked to the exchange mafias have – and we denounce it as it is – the support and protection of Juan Manuel Santos’ Colombian government,” El Aissami said on state television.

As part of the so-called Paper Hands Operation, the vice president also reported that 595 firms had been investigated, with 22 vehicles and properties seized by anti-corruption police. A further 112 arrest warrants have been issued.

Venezuela has suffered from chronic cash shortages in its banking system in recent months and plans to re-launch its national currency in June, removing three zeros from its denominations.

Venezuela has for years been battling the money mafias which operate along the border in order to circumvent exchange controls established by the Bolivarian government, demanding the Colombian government cooperate in controlling the illegal operations but with little success.

Among those arrested are several Colombian citizens, at least 31 of whom are linked to Carlos Colmenares, who was arrested on Thursday on suspicion of running websites artificially setting the price of the “black dollar”, allegedly causing speculation and financial disruption. According to El Aissami, such websites aim to secure “the imposition of criminal rates of the speculative dollar.”

Authorities claim portals price currencies up to 12 times above Venezuela’s official quota, contributing to the artificial devaluation of the national currency and high inflation levels. El Aissami added that the alleged criminal groups arrested during this operation were centered in the states of Zulia, Tachira, Merida and Apure, all on or close to the Colombia border.

So far, neither Colombian authorities nor Banesco have issued public statements regarding the accusations.

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Crescent And Cross Solidarity – Minister Farrakhan and Michael Hoffman Join Forces To Defend The Name Of Christ (PBUH)

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Facebook Rejected Ad Because It Shows Jesus on the Cross

Franciscan University posted a series of ads on Facebook Friday to promote some of its online theology programs, but it says one of them was rejected because it included the Crucifixion of Christ on the San Damiano Cross.

The Catholic university in Steubenville, Ohio sent out a tweet on Friday saying its ad was rejected for content that is “shocking, sensational, and excessively violent.”

“An ad we placed was rejected by Facebook today for content that is “shocking, sensational, and excessively violent,” said the tweet, which included a link to a blog post.”We must agree with them.”

In the blog post, the university acknowledges that Facebook is correct to say that the Crucifixion of Christ was “sensational and excessively violent,” but they castigated Facebook for rejecting the image. They used multiple Bible verses to describe the Crucifixion:

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Rare and deadly respiratory infection that can cross species found in dog shelter in Wisconsin

Image: Rare and deadly respiratory infection that can cross species found in dog shelter in Wisconsin

(Natural News)
Dog owners in Wisconsin are on their toes after a rare and deadly respiratory infection left two dogs in an animal shelter dead. The dogs that lived in Ozaukee, caught strep zoo, a fatal infection that in rare cases, can spread to humans.

Strep zoo, or streptococcus zooepidemicus, is a bacterial infection which “is characterised by sudden onset of clinical signs including pyrexia, dyspnoea and haemorrhagic nasal discharge.”

The staff of the Wisconsin Human Society (WHS) campus where the dogs lived, had to euthanize the infected animals after they failed to respond to treatment. WHS also decided to limit the spread of the disease by not accepting dogs from the public in two areas where the sick animals are found — for now.

Strep zoo may not hog the headlines, but it shouldn’t be taken lightly. It kills dogs and and ruins businesses. A humane society in Kentucky has announced that it will shut down for two weeks to “clean and quarantine” its area after a dog got infected with strep zoo. The 14-day closure means the group can’t receive or have animals adopted.

Strep zoo can infect the air, and spread its deadly effects through body fluids or contaminated surfaces.

According to the WHS, symptoms in infected animals include coughing up blood, nasal discharge, vomiting, and labored breathing. Strep zoo is treatable with antibiotics. But like most diseases, animals only respond favorably if the disease is controlled in its infancy.

But this is no reason to be complacent. WHS warns that strep zoo can strike without warning and cause sudden death.

Breeding ground

The disease finds its breeding ground in animal shelters because the population of dogs living close together is big.  This makes them more prone to infections, and allows for the easier spread of the contagious disease.

Strep zoo has killed seven dogs in 10 days in an animal shelter near Milwaukee. It also killed a dozen dogs in a Miami shelter.

There are more alarming statistics. In 2014, the Royal Veterinary College at the University of London noted that 2007 saw over a thousand dogs suffering or dying from haemorrhagic pneumonia caused by Streptococcus zooepidemicus at one rehoming center in California.

The latest update talks about a possible outbreak in Arizona, where over 30 dogs showed strep zoo symptoms in one of the shelters.

No wonder the disease has become a cause for concern in the veterinary circles.

The Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease (CIRD) Group at the Royal Veterinary College studied the disease and asked dog owners and vets to recognize the signs of the disease before it gets out of control.

Should human owners and handlers of dogs with strep zoo fear for their health?

So far, at least one person was reported getting the illness from a dog in Ireland eight years ago. The case could be isolated. So the alarm bells have not been sounded yet.

But those who are in close touch with horses, and those who take unpasteurized dairy, should be extra careful. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that humans can catch the disease from these sources. (Related: Kissing your puppy could send you to the hospital; CDC says virus is spreading.)

Sources include:



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Sturgis tiny house is built with sturdy & renewable cross-laminated timber (Video)

The tiny house movement has come a long way in the last decade or so, having evolved from its rustic, DIY roots into a flourishing field where we’re seeing a lot of tiny homes using innovative materials and building systems, as well as prefabricated, high-tech smart tiny housing units.

Cubist Engineering is offering this 170-square-foot modern gem of a tiny house that’s built with one of our favourite materials: cross-laminated timber. CLT has been popular in Europe for decades, and is now making its presence known in North America — it’s a strong material that is not only lighter than concrete, but also sequesters carbon and is renewable. Here’s a quick tour of the 21′ by 8′ long Sturgis:

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

As the company explains, the use of CLT from SmartLam allows them to gain almost a foot of extra width, as CLT is strong but light:

In our CLT buildings, the walls, floor and roof are all solid wood panels, up to 3.25 inches thick. CLT panels consist of lumber glued together to form a big sheet; then multiple sheets, oriented perpendicular to each other, are glued together in a massive press. The more layers, the stronger the structure. Our buildings are structurally engineered to withstand the most stringent building codes, as well as drive down the road at 70mph.

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

Clad with shou sugi ban wood siding on the outside, and white oak wood flooring and reclaimed white oak trim inside, the Sturgis’ airy interior boasts one big space-saving trick we are now familiar with in tiny spaces: a retractable queen-sized bed that can be lowered down from the ceiling with the push of a button.

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

The kitchen sits in the centre, and is outfitted with plenty of storage, a two-burner induction cooktop, and an under-counter refrigerator and freezer. The bathroom has been designed as a 4’ by 8’ wet spa bath. The frosted glass makes the space feel more continuous and therefore larger.

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

There’s also what the company calls its “obsession space”: a raised platform located on one end of the unit, which has its own remote-controlled gullwing door. Seems a bit over the top, but the company envisions it acting as a display case and storage unit for prized things: perhaps a nice work of art, a walk-in closet, a wine cellar, or a mini-garage for a motorcycle or some mountain bikes. If anything, it’s basically an extra-large storage space.

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

Cubist Engineering© Cubist Engineering

The Sturgis doesn’t come cheap at a base price of USD $99,000. But as the idea of creating functional, livable and well-designed small spaces becomes more mainstream, it’s an encouraging thought that more innovative and eco-friendly materials will be at least integrated into the mix, as we’ve seen here. Get a more detailed look at the Sturgis’ specifications, or visit Cubist Engineering.

[Via: Inhabitat]

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Report Exposes Rampant Sexual Misconduct Within the Red Cross

red crossred cross

A scathing report on an internal review of the charity group, The Red Cross, has revealed nearly two dozen employees have been removed from their jobs in the last three years for sexual misconduct.

According to the report, 21 members of the Red Cross are no longer employed by the agency because they were caught in crimes of sexual misconduct.

BBC reports:

The ICRC’s director-general, Yves Daccord, said the individuals had paid for “sexual services” and had resigned or were dismissed from the aid agency.

Mr Daccord said on Friday that it was “a difficult but important day”.

The revelations come as the aid sector has been hit by numerous allegations of sex abuse and exploitation by workers.

Mr Daccord said that it was the recent reports of sexual misconduct from humanitarian agencies that had spurred the Geneva-based ICRC to conduct an internal review.

Its code of conduct has explicitly forbidden the purchase of sexual services since 2006.

Friday’s statement follows reports that Plan International, a children’s aid agency, confirmed six cases of sexual abuse and child exploitation by staff or associates.

“I have instructed my teams to scour the data we do have on sexual misconduct, and I can tell you that since 2015 we’ve identified 21 staff members who were either dismissed for paying for sexual services or resigned during an internal inquiry,” Mr. Daccord said.

As the report notes, the Red Cross is not alone in their sexual abuse either. An international children’s aid charity, Plan International was also exposed carrying out rampant child sexual abuse and exploitation this week.

“This behavior is a betrayal of the people and the communities we are there to serve,” Mr. Daccord said. “It is against human dignity and we should have been more vigilant in preventing this.”

Although the crimes and sexual misconduct have been exposed, there have been no reports of arrests.

Even though this is the first time the Red Cross has been exposed on such a large level for sexual misconduct, the charity organization is no stranger to scandal.

Putting them on the corruption map was their reaction to the catastrophic earthquake in Haiti. In 2010, hundreds of thousands of Haitians lost their lives in a tragic earthquake. Gail McGovern, the Red Cross’ CEO, and her staff quickly responded with a massive marketing push to raise funds. They received countless celebrity endorsements and even President Obama jumped on the train. In just a few days, they raised a half a billion dollars.

However, of that half billion, the Red Cross kept $125 million for themselves and didn’t disclose it until they were investigated. An investigation later revealed that the rest of the money the Red Cross spent in Haiti resulted in just six permanent homes, NPR and ProPublica found.

But that’s not all. The Red Cross’ response to Katrina was so horrific that some observers noted they were on the verge of criminal wrongdoing. Years later in 2012, it failed again for Superstorm Sandy and Hurricane Isaac.

The response was “worse than the storm,” one Red Cross driver told ProPublica during its jaw-dropping investigation. The Red Cross was more concerned with their public image than helping the storm victims so much so that they ordered employees to drive around empty trucks to make it appear like they were responding. “We were sent way down on the Gulf with nothing to give,” the driver said.

But that’s not all. Fast forward to 2016 and the Red Cross was responding to the 1000-year flood in Louisiana. Despite Nancy Malone, a spokeswoman for the Red Cross, saying that it was misinformation, there were countless reports of Red Cross stations turning down donations of supplies. Wheel chairs, crutches, canes, diabetic supplies and other goods like clothes and water, were just some of the supplies refused by the Red Cross.

What’s more, when they did take donations during the flood, many of them were reported for throwing them away. 

As Justin Elliott notes, writing for Pro Publica, the Red Cross stopped helping people once it was taken over by a team of former AT&T executives who tried to turn it into a profit machine instead of a charity.

As part of her effort to run the Red Cross more like a business, McGovern recruited more than 10 former AT&T executives to top positions. The move stirred resentment inside the organization, with some longtime Red Cross hands referring to the charity as the “AT&T retirement program.’’

McGovern laid out a vision to increase revenue through consolidated, powerful, breathtaking marketing.”

“This is a brand to die for,” she often said.

The bottom line is that the Red Cross has become a massively centralized bureaucracy that is seemingly more concerned with self-preservation and corporate salaries than they are helping victims of natural disasters. And now, we see that they have become so gluttonous that some of their employees are exploiting the world’s most vulnerable.

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Why didn’t the chicken cross the road? Delivery problems force KFC shutdown across UK, Ireland

The company, once known as Kentucky Fried Chicken, temporarily shut down 575 of its roughly-900 locations across Britain and the Republic of Ireland as of Monday night, BBC reports.

The problem wasn’t due to a shortage of chicken itself, but KFC’s new delivery partner DHL, the company said in a statement. KFC couldn’t say how long it would take to restore normal services.

“We’ve brought a new delivery partner onboard, but they’ve had a couple of teething problems – getting fresh chicken out to 900 restaurants across the country is pretty complex!” KFC said. “We won’t compromise on quality, so no deliveries has meant some of our restaurants are closed, and others are operating a limited menu, or shortened hours.”

DHL admitted that a number of its deliveries had been “incomplete or delayed” due to some “operational issues,” according to CNN Money. The logistics corporation said it was working with KFC to solve the problems.

KFC reportedly replaced its former supplier, Bidvest Logistics, with DHL last week. Bidvest told the media that the transition had been “seamless.”

About 95 percent of all KFC restaurants in Britain are reportedly franchisees. The company pledged to pay its personnel as usual, and to encourage franchisees to do the same.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

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Art? Cross-Dressing Young Boys Sexualized in Perverted Historical Drama

Last week, I mentioned that all did not bode well for traditional values in TNT’s latest series The Alienist, and the second episode already confirms my worst fears. We have gone from implying “progressive” behaviors to actually showing them in a way that has me giving up my faith in human decency. After all, it’s clear that The Alienist gave up on that a long time ago.

The January 29 episode “A Fruitful Partnership” continues the plot of Dr. Laszlo Kreizler (Daniel Brühl) investigating the murder of an impoverished boy with the help of his associates John Moore (Luke Evans) and Sara Howard (Dakota Fanning). Because the boy was discovered to be a transgendered prostitute, the group look into similar cases, leading Moore to an actual child prostitution ring.

There we are treated to several uncomfortable minutes of underage boys (some played by underage actors) wearing dresses with makeup and offering themselves for sexual pleasure.

It’s honestly hard to imagine that in a time where complimenting women can be seen as harassment, dressing boys up like female prostitutes, having them act and speak like girls, can somehow be considered good television. The show clearly paints the act as sad and pathetic, but apparently it’s fine when it’s done for art. That is, if degrading young boys can still be considered art. Somehow, I doubt there will be any Twitter movements regarding this unsightly treatment. After all, that would have to acknowledge two things modern-day feminists refuse to consider. One, that boys can be mistreated, and two, that boys can be (way too) oversexualized.  

The scene continues further as Moore offers one of the boys money in exchange for information rather than affection (which the boy is quick to offer). Unfortunately, that ends with Moore’s drink being spiked and him being at the mercy of corrupt police offers and the brothel “girls.” If you can manage to read those sentences without bemoaning “Where have we gone” over and over, you’re probably stronger than I am.

As a bonus, the episode manages to sneak in a slight against the Catholic Church as well. Near the beginning, Kreizler examines a girl who was sent by a priest after she was caught masturbating. While the priest demands she be prescribed with an ice bath and leeches, Kreizler tells her that she is simply “becoming a woman” and “there’s not a thing your mother nor any priest can do about it.” Already we’re stepping into the “sexually backwards” religious trope, but the scene goes further when Kreizler confronts the priest.

Man: Why did you bring her here? She is in need of God, not a doctor.

Priest: The body’s the temple of the Holy Spirit. It is a blessed gift not to be defiled by lust.

Kreizler: Whoever does not love, does not know God, because God is love. Yes, I, too, learned Scripture when I was young. But instead of answers, I found only questions. Why does God allow us to feel both pleasure and pain? Why has he given a young girl like Berthe impulses and desires she cannot begin to fathom or control? Is this the God of who we speak? This is a sanctuary for the young. I will not tolerate its trespass, neither by man, nor by God. Now, please, remove yourselves from the premises.

And here we have the old “science vs. religion” lecture where science is better because it’s always true and religion is awful because some frown on masturbation. We’re supposed to give a resounding cheer when Kreizler kicks the uptight religious men out of his facility, because that’s what progressives have been teaching us for decades. After all, it led us to an enlightened society where we now view underage boys dressed up as sex objects for entertainment. I can only wish religion finds someone in the midst of all that.

Unfortunately, that’s where liberal shows like this take us. They pronounce how morally superior they are over religion, denigrate themselves for sex, and then still have the nerve to call us “backwards” and “hypocrites.” With several more weeks of The Alienist, I can only hope that this is the worst it gets.

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Public cross ‘Thin blue line’: Officer defends buying dinner in uniform

Police constable Dan Healey, attached to the Lincolnshire Police Department, gave his account online of being accosted by a man while shopping for a salad.

“Just been verbally abused at a supermarket from a member of the public for being in uniform and buying my dinner,” he told his followers.

“Police officers are human too and also need food to survive. I’d help you in a heartbeat if you needed us, not because of my job but because I’m a human who cares,” he said.

According to the community response officer, the man who confronted him did not use foul language, that would have been deemed a public order offence. However, Healey said that what the man did say was “not nice.”

Healey’s Twitter post has garnered a number of supportive messages. One person wrote: “You wanted to buy your own dinner… in uniform? Good grief what on earth is wrong with some people?”

Another Twitter user added: “I really don’t understand people like that. I’m sure they’re in the small-minded minority, most of us support you wholeheartedly.”

Healey has thanked people for their supportive messages.

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