Oscar Pistorius Gets Five Years

Oscar Pistorius received his sentence today, and it was a slap on the wrist if you ask me. I believe Oscar Pistorius killed Reeva in an emotional outburst.

The judge in the case said, “I am of the view that a non-custodial sentence would send a wrong message to the community. On the other hand, a long sentence would not be appropriate either, as it would lack the element of mercy.”

Who on earth believes Pistorius should get mercy? I find this shocking, but not as shocking and as arrogant as what the judge said next.

Judge Thokozile Masipa said, “Society cannot always get what they want. Courts do not exist for a popularity contest but only to dispense justice … The general public may not even know the difference between punishment and vengeance.”

That statement shocked me as extremely arrogant–that the people are likely clueless to determine such.

Ironically, I believe that Pistorius actually killed Reeva in vengeance, and this judge doesn’t see it sadly, or doesn’t want to, perhaps.

According to this news reports, it is believed that Pistorius may only serve 10-20 months in prison, and then will be allowed to serve the remainder of time in house arrest.

Unbelievably sad and quite privileged.

I fear for the next woman who dates this man as he is unable to control his emotions.

Sources (1) (2)

Risk of Getting Ebola on a Plane


With Ebola in the United States, I think it is all of our business to understand the risks of the disease should it spread rapidly like it has in Africa. At this point, I don’t believe there is reason for alarm, but education is prudent. We all need to understand the disease so we can take precautions and prevent its spread.

I also don’t believe in causing panic or fear as that will help no one. We need to smart, get educated, pay attention and make sure we know what are up against so we can fight it as a nation should we become unable to contain it, and win.

When I saw this video on CNN, I was frankly appalled. This doctor, Dr. Suzanne Donovan, an infectious disease specialist who treated people in Africa, is as evasive as anyone can be. This doesn’t help calm people’s fears at all. She doesn’t directly answer ANY questions asked of her, but instead she deflects them. She doesn’t lie, but she is not straight forward either, and by this I am troubled. I can’t help but wonder if she is somehow invested in, connected to, or involved with the airline industry by her responses alone.

When the reporter asks Suzanne what if you are flying next to someone who is showing Ebola symptoms, “Any chance you can get it?”  Listen to what Dr. Donovan says.  She says, “This is something that is transmitted with direct contact of body fluids.”

She doesn’t answer the question that if you are exposed to direct contact of a sick person’s body fluids you CAN get it. She stops short. The CNN reporter questions her further.

The reporter says if bodily fluids from a sick passenger next to you gets on the tray or the armrest and you touch it, and touch your nose or mouth, can you get it?

Again Dr. Donovan doesn’t answer the question. She says, “You are bringing up very rare scenarios, and again I would say you are at greater risk driving to the airport and getting in a car accident then being infected with Ebola by being on an airplane.”

Why can’t she tell us the truth?  Yes, you can get it.

Twice now Dr. Donovan avoids answering the question, and instead makes another statement that is related to the question, but is completely different, albeit true. I find this outrageous!!!  This is not helping the public any.  She is technical correct in her statement, but avoids answering the question completely which is very misleading and dangerous!

The reporter says what about the fabric of the plane? What if bodily fluids get on the fabric of the seats, what’s the probability of you getting it?

Again, this woman refuses to answer the question. She says, “It’s very susceptible to cleaning agents.” She then goes on to talk about how washing your hands with soap and water will kill the virus. And that’s true. But if you touch a freshly contaminated surface unknowingly, and rub your eyes before you wash your hands, you are at risk to catch Ebola. Anyone who has done any reading lately should know this.  Who does this woman think she is fooling?

The fact that she doesn’t tell us the true risks involved, even if she says they are rare, is flat out unprofessional.

I find that evasive actions such as Dr. Donovan’s can actually cause more problems than good and are more harmful than helpful. Many people will say “the doctor said” without realizing she didn’t. She didn’t answer any questions that were asked of her. She instead made statements that were connected but different avoiding giving any answers at all!

Today you are absolutely much more likely to get into a car accident on your way to the airport than you are to catch Ebola.  But that doesn’t change the fact that if you sit next to someone who is symptomatic, and has Ebola (which is very rare and unlikely today) that you can catch it. Especially if you are in direct contact with body fluids from that person, and touch your nose, mouth, or eyes unknowingly before you wash your hands. Ebola can live on surfaces for limited times.

This interview stinks to high heaven if you ask me. There was an ulterior motive for doing it, and it wasn’t for the benefit of the public to become educated.

That’s disturbing to me.

Ebola Facts: Getting to the Truth

If you are like me, you are bewildered that the Texas nurses that cared for Thomas Eric Duncan are coming forward saying they didn’t have the proper equipment to care for Ebola patients nor did they have any protocols to follow. And if you are like me, you are further scratching your head that news reports are saying the CDC told a nurse she could fly with a temperature after caring for the first patient who died in the U.S. from Ebola.

How could things be going terribly wrong like this? Who is responsible for enforcing things when a situation like this is starting to look out of control?

We can’t just continue to react to news reports with fear. We need to understand what our laws say. Who is responsible?

Last night on CNN, Chris Cuomo said that the CDC does not have authority in this matter. They make recommendations and suggest guidelines. Another commenter pointed out that we need a Surgeon General to take the authority.

The big question is who has the authority to make the decisions at a time like to prevent the spread of the this disease?

I started searching online, and its murky to say the least. As a nation, we live by our constitution and I finally found a breakdown of the authority on the CDC website, and I do believe it is accurate. I think people should read this because there are many people responsible for our well being, and we need to know who they are.

I hope by sharing this I will help people get to the truth more quickly, and stop the spread of inaccurate information so we can get better results. We need to find out who is in control and expect them to do their job.

I am going to turn off comments on this post because I know people will make this a political argument and this website is not about that. It’s about truth and lies, and I just wanted to point people to the correct resource to get to the truth on who is responsible.

Technology Slows Ability To Recognize Emotions

There is an interesting study done that looked at children and their interactions with digital media. Did you know the more a child is connected, the less skill he has at being able to recognize emotions in others?

As they surmise, you cannot learn about human interaction by watching it on a screen. You have to experience it firsthand.  I agree with that completely.

How much time does your child spend a day, or a week playing video games, using a cell phone, tablet or watching TV?

Check out this article.

Many thanks to MF for the story!

Stairway to Heaven (Oahu)

Last year, I went to Hawaii for business and I unexpectedly fell in love. Having traveled to the South Pacific before (Fiji, the Cook Islands and Australia), I incorrectly assumed the congested state of Hawaii would be a turn-off for me. When I landed in Honolulu over 20 years ago at 6 a.m., the traffic was so congested, it was at a crawl for miles up the mountains that I made a mental note–skip Hawaii. I figured it would be too built up for my tastes, too touristy, and wouldn’t hold a candle to the Cook Islands. But when I got an opportunity to go on business, I had to explore it.

My trip to Hawaii truly topped all of the places I have been including the South Pacific and the Great Barrier Reef. I was blown away. It was the like South Pacific on steroids. I kid you not!

Hawaii is truly magical and stole my heart on every level possible, and I have a strong need to get back there again–more permanently. I don’t know that I will be able to make it happen, but the dream lives on.

While driving back and forth to do training on the island of Oahu, I happen to spot these stairs going up the most incredible steep incline on the jagged mountains as I drove on the highway. I wondered what on earth is it for, and who would in their right mind climb it?

The stairs are known as the Haiku Stairs or “The Stairway to Heaven”. It turns out the stairs are illegal to hike right now and there is a guard posted to prevent people from climbing them. You can read more about it here.

I accidentally ran into this video the other day, and I was captivated by this video on many levels.  The video truly captures the stunning beauty of Oahu.  And I was truly amazed by the climber in the video.

I was most amazed by what is missing when I look at the climber as he climbs over 3,000 stairs straight up.

Do you know what it is?

(Recommendation: If you have a big computer screen, you must play this video on it. A tablet or phone won’t do this video justice)

Introverts and Extroverts

While this column focuses a lot on deception and spotting lies, I am also endlessly interested in human behavior. I do not believe you can be good at spotting liars if you only focus on lies. And so many people make that mistake. If you want to be good at spotting lies–very good–you need to understand the truth, too. And the only way to understand the truth is to understand people at a detailed level. With that, it means understanding all different types of people.

One type of personality that comes to mind is introverts.

Introverts are a very misunderstood segment of our population. We typically think of them as socially-awkward, isolated, shy, loners, and that’s quite an inaccurate perception. Out of all the introverts I see, that description of “shy” aspect actually fits with a very small minority of them. Most introverts are actually smart, engaging and interesting people.

Read this article which details introverts in a way that may change your thinking.

From my experience, introverts are “introverted” because they often see more than the extroverts, and are more easily overwhelmed with the information they process. When you see two people interacting, an introvert will see the pain in the interaction that an extrovert often misses. Dealing with that information can be challenging and often causes information overload. Yet on the positive to extroverts, they seem to push through situations and achieving things when introverts are stifled by emotional overload.  So there are pluses and minuses to both sides!

I feel I can relate to both introverts and extroverts. Neither description fits me, so I feel I am more of an ambivert (a blend of both).  With that, I relate to both sides, though I tend slightly more towards introversion.  Yet I love speaking in front of a large audience (yes, I can say that now after doing it for several years)!  I get exhilarated by the energy of other people in positive situations.

So, which are you?  Take a test here to see. It’s 81 questions — so plan to give it some time. I ironically scored 55 out of 100 — right smack in the middle, as predicted!

By the way, to my loyal reader base, I can tell by watching you for years now that I have many more introverts than extroverts who follow me.  Who knew?


Europol: First Online Murder to Happen in 2014

I saw the strangest story on MSN the other day, “First online murder to occur by end of 2014, Europol warns“.

I was perplexed. I scratched my head as I wondered what in the world are they talking about. Go ahead, and read the article. It’s rather chilling!  It’s like the stuff of science-fiction becoming reality!

If this surprises you, I have to ask have you heard of Stuxnet? It was a computer worm that was used to infiltrate Iran’s nuclear plants. NOVA had a special on it, “The Rise of the Hackers“, that was absolutely spellbinding. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it.

Mario Casciaro Innocent?

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ABC featured the story of Brian Carrick, a grocery store clerk who went missing in the small town of Johnsburg, Illinois. The story takes a bunch of twists and turns, and eventually 12 years after Brian’s disappearance, the grocery store owner’s son, Mario Casciaro, gets charged with the murder and locked up for 26 years.

I will go through the list of characters to share with you who I believe and who I don’t.

I don’t believe what Shane Lamb told the truth to prosecutors the first time about Mario’s involvement. I believe Shane truly has remorse for telling that story.

With regards to Mario Casciaro, I don’t believe him when he says he was just selling his friends some of “his stash” and that it wasn’t a criminal enterprise. I do believe Mario was probably a small operation, but it seems clear from the testimony that he and Brian were selling pot, and that it was criminal. There is no evidence that Mario was involved in the murder, but the stakes in this case for Mario are no longer high.

What does it mean when the stakes are no longer high? With Mario, he is paying the ultimate price for whatever happened. If he was involved, let’s say, there is nothing to lose now by lying. Instead, he would have everything to gain. With that, there is no pressure on him if he does lie, which would cause the clues to leak. With that, I am extremely careful to say that I cannot judge a man behind bars for lying without testimony or video of him talking about it before he was locked up. This is critical because I have seen very guilty people speak from behind bars and sound innocent, because the pressure that caused clues to leak was gone!

However, there does not seem to be any evidence leading to Mario in this murder, and the evidence we do have, as Kathleen Zellner has pointed out, leads to Rob Render. Kathleen Zellner is an amazing attorney and I have full faith in her to get to the truth.

As for Rob Render, his interview was definitely odd and I did not believe him. He seemed to say anything in hopes of getting the police to leave him alone. He was extremely nervous, too, and I wonder if that came and went during the interview process, or was constant. That would reveal more information.

What I don’t understand from the show, however, is about the blood evidence. How could there be a lot of blood from a violent attack and no one see it that night when they closed up the store? Or early the next morning? Jerry Casciaro, Mario’s father, saw some reddish water and says he thought it was Hawaiian punch. Did the Casciaro’s call the police immediately? If not, why? I’m curious about this. We never heard.

I honestly need more information on this case to fully understand what happened, but I don’t believe Shane told the truth when Mario was convicted. And I’d like to see more of Mario, if there is any depositions or whatnot of him, prior to or during trial, to get to the truth in this matter. I am curious if the Casciaro’s knew that something went down, and wanted it to go away because it might be bad for business.