5 people who totally ruined this week for us.
5. Those effers at the NSA for being about as bad as we thought. The Washington Post reported this week that the NSA broke its own (rather dubious) laws 2,776 times in 12 months. Most of the time the mistakes were simply human or computer error, but other times the NSA deliberately hid what they were doing or knowingly broke the law. Luckily for the NSA, I know exactly how they can make it up to us. NSA, please send your employees' email conversations, transcripts of phone conversations, private Facebook messages and Youtube videos of every stupid thing you've ever done to firstname.lastname@example.org. We'll make them public in a post called "The NSA are a bunch of losers." Once your privacy has been systematically violated, we'll be even! —SRD
4. People who tricked us into fearing testicle-biting fish. Last week, Danish swimmers were warned to keep their bathing suits on or risk being bitten in the testicles by pacu fish, who might mistake male nuts for the regular nuts they eat. Balls everywhere involuntarily retracted. But now it turns out the whole testicle-biting fish thing was overblown, according to a fish expert at the University of Copenhagen. There was no reason to experience that visceral fear of ball chompitude. So go ahead and jump in the water while nude, fellas. Go on. I dare you. Go. —SRD
3. The President of Ecuador, who is still destroying a rainforest we totally saved in the 90s by selling chocolate bars. President Raphael Correa announced Thursday that Ecuador will resume drilling in an Amazon rainforest preserve, which will lead to the release of "410 million metric tons of carbon dioxide." Ecuador had come up with this plan where wealthy countries could pay them money to not drill, but when they didn't see enough cash, they decided to take the short-term, possibly disastrous solution. It's like they get their economic planning advice from us, or something. —SRD
2. Mark Zuckerberg, for personally making us all more sad. A new study from the University of Michigan revealed that the more you use Facebook, the more unhappy you'll be. The researchers said going on Facebook every day not only makes people sadder in the moment, but also makes them feel generally worse about their lives. But I do have to wonder if the researchers accounted for when people you didn't like in high school get fat. That feels great and only makes you hate yourself a little bit! —SRD
1. The sequester, for forcing scientists to euthanize lab animals. When the sequester started, the only place most people noticed it was at the airport. In fact, because that affected Congresspeople flying home for vaction, they fixed it. But no one mentioned that it meant that labs receiving government funding would have to kill their lab animals. Dr. Robert E. Marc, Distinguished Professor of Opthamology at the University of Utah was breeding rabbits who had been given a human gene for degenerative blindness. "We petted them, played with them, fed them treats. Now they are dead. I blame Congress directly for that." Granted, they were going to die four years from now, but it would have helped blind people. Whether you oppose animal science in principle, everyone can agree animals killed prematurely without scientific benefit is worse than dead animals who help blind people. —JMC