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article imageTopFinds: Tanning Beds Cause Cancer, Cyber-Activism in India

By David Silverberg     Jul 31, 2009 in Internet
A recent study says tanning beds can cause skin cancer; Hawaii once again validates Obama's birth certificate; and Indian farmers are asking their daughters to plow fields naked. These are the top stories gathering buzz around the world.
How does the H1N1 virus affect fetal development? Is it linked to autism at all? Michael Krebs found the answers to these pressing questions by interviewing Dr. Hossein Fatemi, a University of Minnesota Medical School professor who's been studying the link between H1N1 specifically and autism and schizophrenia since 1998. If you've ever been curious about flu infection, this article's for you.
Explosion at Austin Powder plant in Ohio. That's the kind of headline that turns heads. KJ Mullins reported on the breaking-news story that was the talk of Ohio: a powder plant in Austin exploded, sending four people to the hospital. KJ showed tremendous gumption and interviewed the emergency management director for Vinton County, Ohio to flesh out the article with pertinent details.
Digital Journal's correspondent in Goa, Armstrong Vaz, interviewed an intriguing character; Fredrick Noronha brings his passion for journalism and activism into his career, and he recently held a workshop to explain how best to use tech tools to further a purpose. A line worth highlighting: "With Goa seeing an increased level of activism he says 'more communication would help. Whether blogs, mailing lists, wikis, Facebook groups, or whatever.'" A great interview, Armstrong.
A selection of other notable, notables:
Republican: GOP is Being Taken Over by Southerners: As Andrew Moran reported, Ohio Republican Senator George Voinovich said the Republican Party is full of Southerners. It wasn't a complement. He also went on to explain why he wants the U.S. to strengthen its nuclear power capabilities, and why Nancy Pelosi is Obama's biggest problem. Tell us what you really think, George.
Center for American Progress Action Fund
Hawaii Officials Declare Obama's Birth Certificate Genuine, Again: People are still talking about Obama's birth certificate? Carol Forsloff wanted to lay this puppy to bed, telling us about Hawaii once again verifying Obama's legitimacy as an American citizen born in the state. What do you think about this supposed controversy?
Spitzer: Federal Reserve is a Ponzi Scheme and an Inside Job: Eliot Spitzer, former governor of New York (yes, the guy who paid for booty), couldn't help but speak his mind recently. He called the Federal Reserve a Ponzi scheme, and added, "The Fed has done an absolutely disastrous job since [former Fed Chairman] Paul Volcker left." Gary Brown echoes Spitzer, commenting: "I am suspicious as to why the Federal Reserve doesn't want any fraud investigators looking over the Trillions that pass through the FR. What have they got to hide?"
Whale impaled on cruise ship in Vancouver: In one of the less sunny stories, Bob Ewing reported on a whale impaled on the bow of a Vancouver cruise ship. It was an accident, apparently. All that tanker traffic creates chaos in the water, some marine experts claim. The aftermath of the incident was neatly summed up by this witness's statement: "It wasn't something you wanted to see on a nice Saturday morning in Vancouver."
A canary in a cage
A canary in a cage
By tanakawho
Fight to the Death: Illegal Canary Fighting Ring Broken Up: A horrific story small-town Connecticut informed us about the canary-fighting ring recently busted by local cops. Approximately 100 of the small songbirds were seized and 19 people were arrested, Sandy Sand said.
Plowing Naked in India to Encourage Rain Storms: If you wanted to embarrass the weather gods into providing your crops with rain, what would you do? Tell your daughters to plow the fields naked, of course. That's what some Indian farmers are doing in order to combat a deadly drought. The "parents who hope to embarrass the weather gods and force them to bring some badly needed monsoon rain." Will this odd tactic work or are the parents just cruel and misguided?
Rorschach Personality Test: Did Wikipedia Leak a ‘Cheat Sheet’: Who would've thought that ink-blots could stir up controversy on Wikipedia? Evidently, the wiki site leaked a cheat sheet on the Rorschach test, and mental health professionals maintained this leak is equivalent to posting an answer sheet to the SAT for next year. Digital Journalist Carol Forlsoff concludes: "[The test publisher] is now examining a legal response to Wikipedia in order to have the images removed, despite the fact they are in the public domain since they were created over 90 years ago."
Study says tanning beds cause cancer: Tell your bronzed girlfriend about those dangerous tanning beds. A new study found using those tanning beds can increase a person's risk of getting skin cancer. The study found "the risk of skin melanoma is increased by 75 per cent when people started using tanning beds before age 30." Leigh Danner wants legal action: "These cancer factories need to be open to lawsuits. Teenagers are lured into these shops and their lives put in danger at very young ages."
Tanning Bed
A woman tans inside a tanning bed
Photo by Whatsername
Utah boy, 7, steals car to avoid church: Containing a hilarious video clip, this story made us wonder how a 7-year-old boy could steal his parent's car and drive perfectly along side roads with the police nipping at his bumper. The best part of this story is in the video clip, at the 3:07 mark -- the kid parks the car and tries to make a run for it. Such a smooth cute criminal.
Michael Schumacher returns to Formula One: Finally in sports, the F1 star Michael Schumacher is calling it a comeback, announcing he will replace injured Felipe Massa in the European Grand Prix in Valencia next month. He'll need to pass a fitness test, but it looks like Schumacher will be back on the track very soon.

TopFinds Awards

The honourees of this week's TopFinds Awards attracted impressive attention and widest readership. Digital Journal thanks the following Digital Journalists with Awards for their passion for covering the top issues of the day: M Dee Dubroff, Bob Ewing, Kesavan Unnikrishnan, Michael Krebs, Stephanie Dearing, Sandy Sand, Andrew Moran, Armstrong Vaz,KJ Mullins, , and Carol Forsloff.
The Top Blog Post of the Week is awarded to Danny MacDougall, a sports fan. He blogged about the trade rumours swirling Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Doc Halladay. Even though Doc isn't going to be traded, he wonders whether Torontonians "should have gone to the dome more often, especially when Halladay was pitching, to show support and show Rogers that we will support the team." It's a measured and insightful report on one of the hottest pitchers in the majors today.
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