Facepalm Newsoids 34: The Mortality Edition

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This skeleton Facepalm sticker is available at Redbubble.

Partier defies his own mortality with a hole in his head. In Brazil, 21 year-old Mateus Facio, a university student who had partied for four straight days, thought he was hit by a rock, but when he started losing control of his arms and fingers after waking up on the fifth day, he sought medical attention, and was told that he had a bullet lodged just under his skull. It was not serious enough to cause paralysis. The bullet has since been surgically removed and Mateus is expected to make a full recovery. (22 Jan)

The Fight For Less Government. Micheal Mohn, a federal employee working in Pennsylvania was beheaded with a machete at his home, with the murderer posting the aftermath including his decapitated head on YouTube, where the murderer had vowed to murder all government employees, and tried to appeal to right-wing extremists. The murderer happened to be his son, Justin Mohn, age 32, who has been in arrears with his student loans, but has been trying to sell a self-published book and some self-released music of his. Justin was charged with murder, the abuse of a corpse, and possession of an instrument of crime, and is being held without bail. The YouTube video was posted for 5 hours and received over 5000 views before it was taken down. (2 Feb)

News from Death Row. The state of Alabama executed Kenneth Smith on January 25 using nitrogen gas. While it was said by officials that death would come in a few seconds, it actually took several minutes for him to die, while he suffered in the meantime. The American Veterinary Association does not recommend nitrogen hypoxia for euthanising mammals except under anaethesia, but Smith was given no such anaesthetic. The Alabama government tried and failed last year to execute Smith by lethal injection. Smith was given life imprisonment by a jury for a murder committed in 1988, but a judge overruled the jury to place him on death row, where he had been for  nearly 40 years. (1 Feb)

Killer Airbags.   over 61,000 Toyota and GM cars are being recalled because the inflatable airbags will tend to hurl pieces of metal “shrapnel” into the driver and passengers. These are generally for cars made in the early 2000s. In the case of the Corolla and Matrix, the airbags can suddenly inflate without an accident. So far, over 30 people had died due to the faulty airbags worldwide. (29 Jan)

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Facepalm Newsoids XV

Community Facepalm

Clear the path! It’s gonna blow! On May 2, Chicago police spotted a “suspicious package” lying on the road on the 200 block of Chicago’s South State Street. The road and sidewalk were ordered shut down to both traffic and pedestrians. In addition, the Red Line section of underground subway was also sealed off. Upon closer inspection, it was revealed to be a can of Chef Boyardee Beef Ravioli scotchtaped to a set of skateboard wheels. A local FOX news affiliate also found that it belonged to a student at Chicago’s DePaul University, who intended it to be a prototype for a class project. The police later found the student, questioned him, and ticketed him for the incident, though it is not clear to anyone what law he violated.

The Death Hit Parade. Dropping down the charts of the leading causes of death in United States, is Covid-19, falling behind heart disease, cancer, and overdoses, motor vehicle fatalities and shootings, according to ABC News. ABC News cites the CDC, but I was unable to find the data at the CDC when I did my fact-checking.

The future is here. After help-line workers at the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) voted to unionize, CEO Elizabeth Thompson made a surprise announcement, that all help-line worker jobs would be eliminated and replaced by a chatbot. NEDA is headquartered in White Plains, New York, but have mostly an online presence. All newly-unionized employees will be jobless as of June 1. (4 May)

Breaking the Internet. Senator for the Minnesota state legislature Calvin Barr participated in a vote over a Zoom call, shirtless with a Schoolhouse Rock cartoon in the background. It has now inspired memes including a cockatiel drinking green “unsee juice” from a cocktail glass through a straw. (1 May)

The fix is in. On May 11, Florida governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill into law that exempts any records related to his travel from public disclosure. By contrast, by Florida’s sweeping Government-In-The-Sunshine Law, all other government proceedings must be made public, including arrests of the mentally ill. The new bill is so expansive as to include any trips arranged by DeSantis’s office even when he isn’t involved. The law applies retroactively and will apply to the entire time he served as governor. It appears timed to keep damaging information about DeSantis’s travel from getting out as he is expected to announce his campaign for president.

The law applies to you and not to me. Congressman George Santos voted in support of a bill on 11 May called “Protecting Taxpayers and Victims of Unemployment Fraud Act”, providing incentives to states who lost money due to unemployment insurance fraud during the COVID lockdowns. The irony is that Santos is facing charges for precisely the same kind of fraud. During the lockdown, as he was earning a $120,000 salary as the regional director of an investment firm, he applied for and received unemployment benefits during the pandemic.

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Crappy Album Covers #14 – I need help

Freddie Gage has with this album cover, achieved a level of morbidity reserved only for folks like Nietzsche or August Strindberg. He has made a name for himself as an evangelical preacher who has won favour with the likes of Jerry Fallwell.

As a casual passerby who may not have heard of Freddie Gage, I would see that much of the design is taken up by the title.

Obviously, the death of all of his buddies weigh very heavily on his mind. He is from the southern USA and not some war-torn country. I am sure he didn’t lose anyone at Gitmo.

I think in reality, the voices inside his head told him to kill all his friends. Now he lives in regret, and in fulfillment of his persecution comlpex, he is now in actual pursuit by law enforcement.

So, what to do? Well, he could plead insanity when they arrive to apprehend him. However, he still has to live with all that guilt, on top of his illness. How does he do that?

Well, Dr. Murray Banks has the answer. He will be a fountain of advice and wisdom for our poor friend Freddie, telling him how he can live with himself, up until his first psychiatric appointment.

What about the artwork here? Late 50s to mid-60s low-budget cartoon-style artwork. For this, I would like to invent a new word to describe the effect: it’s chugly (cheesy + ugly). I think chugly was a popular style back then. It was during and after the McCarthy era that this artwork seemed to have its heyday. It didn’t offend, it could not be called “sexy” or “political” or anything else that was a virtual McCarthy-era cuss word. It was the artistic drek that could only come from the era and sociopolitical climate in which it existed. Lately, I have noticed that Starbucks and Chapters Bookstores have veered dangerously close to this kind of aesthetic.

For the record, “All My Friends Are Dead” is also the title of a song released around 2003 by the Norwegian punk rock group Turbonegro.

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