Archive for May 8, 2008

SwampMan, This Song’s for YOU!

SwampMan was triumphant this morning after buying an out of print service manual for GMC trucks. “I got it for only $50 including SHIPPING!”

“What did it cost new?”

“That’s NOT the point. The point is that I’ve been trying and trying to get one, and I rarely find them for under $80.”

Yep, that hunting and stalking caveman gene is alive and well. SwampMan, I dedicate this song to you.

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Man Held After Body Parts Found in Trash

A severed left leg found in a Hialeah trash bin led detectives to a convicted killer who they say dismembered a Hollywood jeweler with a machete last week.

Guillermo Denis Gonzalez, 63, was booked into Miami-Dade County Jail early Wednesday on a charge of first-degree murder.

In 1992, at the age of 47, Gonzalez was convicted in Miami-Dade County of second-degree murder, records show. He was released in 2004 from the state Everglades Correctional Institution in South Miami-Dade.
Gonzalez is now accused of slaying Sergio I. Quintero, 58, in an argument that may have been drug related.

”It was a gruesome crime,” said Hialeah Police Chief Mark Overton. “I’ve never seen anyone dismembered like that.”

Someone digging through trash Saturday afternoon found Quintero’s left leg in a commercial trash bin in a warehouse alleyway at East 10th Avenue and 15th Street.

The rest of his body parts were found in six black garbage bags in three Dumpsters on Hialeah’s east side, police said.

”Gonzalez cut off Quintero’s head, both legs, both arms, both hands and torso,” Detective Jose Proveyer wrote in his report. Proveyer investigated the case with Detective Joe Elosegui.

Gonzalez confessed to killing Quintero, Overton said.

Hialeah investigators gave this account of the events leading to Gonzalez’s arrest:

About noon on Friday, Quintero was at Gonzalez’s Hialeah home sitting in his kitchen when the convict ”became enraged” and punched the jeweler. With a kitchen knife, he stabbed Quintero.

”Quintero began to bleed profusely from his neck and collapsed and began gasping for air,” an arrest report said.

Gonzalez stabbed him twice more in the torso, the report said.

As he dismembered Quintero, Gonzalez ”periodically” crushed the corpse’s face. Police say he used a mallet.

Then he drove his 1998 white Dodge Caravan through the warehouse district of east Hialeah to dump the remains.

Fingerprints from the severed hands helped identified the remains as Quintero.

Detectives found two fingerprints on the garbage bags that belonged to Gonzalez, including two separate matches left on the bag that held the man’s head and right leg.

Gonzalez’s fingerprint was also discovered on a blood-soaked comforter stuffed in a bag. That bag was inside a Dumpster next to another one containing the man’s left foot.

Also, Quintero’s last five cellphone calls were traced to Gonzalez, detectives learned. Grainy surveillance video showed a man in shorts in the white van — with side panel damage — placing the garbage bags inside the bin.

Detectives found the damaged Dodge parked at Gonzalez’s home.

Miami-Dade Assistant State Attorney David Waksman — who prosecuted Gonzalez on the 1992 conviction — was enlisted to help. He helped prepare search warrants for the Dodge and home, both later signed by Circuit Judge Israel Reyes.

Detectives found a bloody knife and machete inside the home.


It appears that the time spent in prison for second degree murder was inadequate for him to repent of his evil ways.

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More Cool Weather Bad News

Reading E.U Referendum’s post “Global Cooling Caused Crash?”, it appears that British Airways Flight BA7777 crashed due to Sustained Exposure to Extremely Cold Weather.

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Nice Pictures Showing the Verdant Meadows of Greenland? Well, not exactly.

The verdant portion seems to have gone astray. See for some lovely white pictures.

Click to enlarge.

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Almost-4-Year-Old Jacob’s Opinion on Bollywood Movies

Daughter called me this evening. She said that she had rented a Bollywood movie and they were all singing, dancing, and then started to do the head and eye thing. At that point, lil’ Jacob sat up and exclaimed “What the HELL?”

“Awwwwwwwww, isn’t that cute?”


“Well, I would have probably said the same thing…..”

“I KNOW. I was THINKING the same thing, and he came right out and SAID it.”

“You really shouldn’t use such language around him. Children are impressionable, you know.”

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Georgia Environmental Officials Relax Water Restrictions

ATLANTA — Georgia environmental officials are relaxing some of the strict water restrictions imposed last year despite concerns that the epic drought gripping the state could grow worse.

Carol Couch, Georgia’s top environmental official, called off an order Tuesday that required utilities in 61 counties in drought-stricken north Georgia to reduce water use by 10 percent.

She also loosened water restrictions through parts of south and central Georgia, and launched a new plan that could allow some counties in the northern part of the state to apply for exemptions.
Recent rainfall throughout the state and other signs the drought was loosening helped spur the moves, but Couch said she was also convinced that many of Georgia’s communities are now more prepared for the consequences of a drought.

“If we’re prepared, we should be able to weather drought conditions,” she said.

But the sudden policy shift has raised concern from environmentalists and others who fear the state could be loosening water restrictions just as the drought grows worse.

“We cannot afford to find ourselves in another water crisis caused by the state’s irresponsible mismanagement of water resources when the dog days of summer come this year,” said April Ingle of the Georgia Water Coalition.

There’s little doubt the drought’s grip on the state has weakened.

Recent rainfall has helped replenish reservoirs and streams that months ago had dried to a trickle. It’s also chipped away at conditions that left most of the state in an “exceptional” drought — the government’s worst category — in December. Now no part of the state is classified in that category.

Yet, as frustrated forecasters say, there’s no way to tell whether the change is firm or a fluke. And there are plenty of signs that the drought is far from over.

Atlanta’s main water supply, Lake Lanier, is still more than 13 feet below normal levels. Few parts of north Georgia are receiving normal levels of rainfall, and there’s little hope that the arrival of summer will improve the situation.

“Barring tropical weather, drought conditions are expected to worsen through October 2008,” said state climatologist David Stooksbury. “That’s the fly in the ointment,” he said, referring to the threat of severe weather, “but it’s a fly most of us would be happy to take.”

Couch’s announcement on Tuesday reverses some of the restrictions the state imposed last year when they worried worsening drought conditions could threaten Georgia’s water supply.

Virtually all outdoor watering was banned in the parched northern part of the state, and utilities there were ordered to cut water use by 10 percent. Residents in the rest of the state were restricted to outdoor watering only three days a week.

Gov. Sonny Perdue also launched a legal battle against the Corps of Engineers, which manages regional water sources, and led a public prayer vigil for rain on the steps of the Capitol.

The changes announced Tuesday still limit residents through much of south Georgia to outdoor watering three days a week, but now allow them to water their lawns between 4 p.m. and midnight.

Six counties in central Georgia where outdoor watering is tightly restricted banned will be allowed limited outdoor watering. And Couch’s policy shift also means that north Georgia counties that do not rely upon Lake Lanier for their water could ask the state for looser rules.

Couch said she recognizes the drought will continue through the summer, and conceded it could grow worse. But she said Georgia communities are better able to deal with it, even with a loosening of tight restrictions.

“We are better prepared this year,” said Couch.


Well, isn’t THAT special. Meanwhile those of us in Northeast Florida who have a LOT more water available to us are still following pretty stringent drought watering rules.

Which is probably why we have a lot more water available to us.

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Elementary Art Teacher Suspended

JACKSONVILLE, FL — John Boswell says he was just trying to defend himself and his art students in a dangerous situation, but the Duval County School Board voted to suspend him without pay, pending termination.

The unanimous vote against the Sadie Tillis Elementary teacher came after Boswell defended himself before the board during public comment.

“I used the uttermost discretion in managing the student,” said Boswell Tuesday night.

“This young man is not a student in my art class. He has a record of misconduct and he came into my room bullying my children.”

“As I attempted to tell [his teacher] of his behavior, he yelled, “Liar, I’ll kill you,” then used the “n” word.

He then overpowered her to come back into the room at me where I stood with the children.”

Boswell said, “He swung at my face yelling, “I’ll kill you, I’ll kill you.”

I caught his wrists, saying the whole time, “Calm down son, calm down,” which is confirmed by his teacher.”

Witnesses reportedly told school investigators that the student was not out of control. Boswell was never arrested.

He ended his comments saying, “Whatever you decide, I have clearness of conscience because I’ve told you the truth.”

Jim Moser is a teacher at Lee High School.

He told the board six teachers have been assaulted at his school this year.

From his Arlington home Wednesday afternoon, Moser said, “One teacher was shoved to the ground, one teacher was shoved against the door of his classroom, and another teacher had a lock thrown at him and he got hit in the head.”

Two science teachers quit at Lee High School in November, saying they didn’t feel safe enough.

At that time, the principal told First Coast News that her school wasn’t perfect, but she believes her teachers feel safe.

Moser says he’s running for school board, despite his own story.

“The first time I was head-butted in the ribcage.

The second time I was shoved in the chest and the third time which happened back in December of this last year I was shoved into lockers.”

When asked why he stays, Moser said, “I stay because the kids are worth it.”

Boswell’s attorney told the board, “We have kids in our community that are acting really crazy.

They’re shooting, they’re violating the law and doing a lot of bad things.

This teacher just touched a kid, asked him to calm down and tried to hold this kid, and now he’s up for termination.”

As for Boswell’s suspension and pending termination, the school board says it can’t say much more than that Boswell was suspended with a vote of 7-0, and he has appealed for a hearing which means a judge out of Tallahassee will decide if Boswell loses his job.

No date has been set.


While I do not have enough information to have an informed opinion, I do know that the Duval County School where I was doing an internship routinely swept violent and potentially violent acts under the rug so as to not upset higher administration.

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Lead in Dental Products

JACKSONVILLE, FL — First, it was lead in Chinese made toys. Then, it was plastic in Chinese made pet food. Now, more lead is being discovered in Chinese made products, but this time it’s something that goes in your mouth.

Dental products made in China, things like crowns, bridges and veneers, may contain high levels of lead. The problem is most people never know where their dental product is made and many dentists don’t know either.

Chuck Dimaria has been making dental crowns and implants in Missouri for 20 years. It’s a business of long relationships with dentists and technical skill; but now, some dental labs are sending the work to China.

“There are laboratories sending implant work to China to be done. I believe that is happening. Do I have any record of it? No,” said Dimaria.

Dimaria says he has received offers to send his lab work to China. He’s resisting that fearing the Chinese dental work quality is too low and the crowns and implants may be tainted.

Faye Lewis is the first confirmed victim in the United States with lead contamination in imported dental crowns. She’s from Ohio but came to Florida to speak in Tallahassee to urge state lawmakers to enact protections for dental patients.

“The teeth that were cemented into my mouth were made in a Chinese Laboratory,” she said.

She also had a bridge in her mouth for 36 days. When she started having problems with it, the dentist took it out and sent it to a lab where it was discovered it had been made in China and was tainted.

“All this time toxic metals from this material in my mouth, imported from China, was eating into my body,” Lewis said.

Dimaria knows of another case where lab workers found that a Chinese implant was contaminated with fecal bacteria.

He says the Chinese prices are 80% of his and the U.S. labs using the Chinese goods aren’t cutting their prices, just increasing the profits and no one’s the wiser. “It’s the laboratories that are sending this stuff overseas. It’s the dentists that are sending it to the lab to get the work done and the labs are sending it overseas. The dentists don’t know it. I would say the majority don’t know,” said Dimaria.

There are no laws in place to force dental labs to disclose to dentists where a product was made and what materials were used but that could soon change in Florida. Representative Stan Jordan of Jacksonville is pushing to regulate Chinese dental products.

“It’s very easy for you today to get something made for your mouth that is made in Taiwan or India or the Philippines or wherever and we have no idea what’s in it,” said Jordan.

Faye Lewis is hoping to help pushing legislation through by telling her story to anyone who will listen. “I’m just a grandmother enjoying life and I had no choice to say, ‘yes or no.'” She adds, “When you find out there are toxic metals in something in your mouth feeding into your system it’s alarming. It’s frightening.”

Both the House and Senate recently passed a measure which contains new consumer protections on dental products. It’s intended to avoid the use of foreign products that may be dangerous.

Source: First Coast News

What is the point of having regulations in place for consumer safety if they’re going to be routinely ignored when items are being imported from a foreign country? Shouldn’t the importer be responsible for damages when their imported items are made of harmful substances?

Consumers need to find out where the items being implanted into their bodies are made. As was referenced in the article, the labs are sending out items to foreign labs for manufacture, but are not informing the customer nor passing on the price savings.

I suppose it’s back to the ol’ caveat emptor for the consumer. Ask the tough questions. If your doctor/dentist doesn’t know where the item(s) being placed in your body come(s) from, go to one that does. Take responsibility for your health. The government regulations that forced manufacturing overseas and allows inferior/harmful products to be imported isn’t going to watch out for you.

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