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    Prostitutes of God (Documentary)
    Articles, Blog

    Prostitutes of God (Documentary)

    November 30, 2019


    [MUSIC PLAYING] SARAH HARRIS: The first thing
    that strikes you when you come to India is a sense of
    extreme contrasts. While some people are still
    shitting off the side of railway lines and eating from
    banana leaves, other people are drinking Frappuccinos and
    wearing Gucci sunglasses. Along with this feeling of
    progress and moving forward, there’s still this undercurrent
    of tradition and religion and superstition and an
    even more deeply ingrained caste system. I didn’t realize quite how sharp
    these contrasts between new and old India were until
    I came here last year to research an article about
    sex trafficking. And on my very first day here,
    I met a group of temple prostitutes who told me about
    this ancient Hindu system where prepubescent girls are
    dedicated to a goddess, and for the rest of their lives,
    they will become sex slaves of the temple. The name of that system
    is devadasi. This train’s a little bit like
    The Darjeeling Limited, except we have cockroaches sleeping
    under our beds. And there’s no one serving
    sweet lime. Hello. So in the beginning, being a
    devadasi had nothing to do with prostitution. In medieval India, they were
    glamorous temple dancers and held high social status. They performed sacred religious
    rituals and danced for loyalty in the name of a
    goddess called Yellamma. Over the centuries, the link
    between the devadasis and their temples gradually
    diminished, along with their social status. They became the paid mistresses
    of priests, then kings, and later,
    rich landowners. In the 19th century, Western
    missionaries tried to abolish the tradition, calling it
    grotesque and immoral, driving the devadasis underground. Today, devadasis are no
    different to common street hookers, servicing drunk truck
    drivers and bored businessmen. Even though the practice has
    been illegal for over 20 years, up to 3,000 girls are
    still being secretly dedicated every year. We traveled to the border town
    of Sangli, which straddles the two southern Indian states of
    Karnataka and Maharastra. Its red light district is home
    to hundreds of devadasi sex workers, and that afternoon,
    we were invited there by Anitha, one of its most
    successful brothel owners. She’s a member of an NGO called
    SANGRAM, which fights to empower locals sex workers. Communication was pretty
    painful, as our interpreter Somashekar was having some
    trouble with his English. Everybody in the houses
    next door– this whole street– is also sex workers
    like Anitha? Yes. SARAH HARRIS: So all
    the neighborhood. And they’re all friends
    who live around here? Everybody is friends? SARAH HARRIS: So when the
    customer comes inside, the door closes. And this– SARAH HARRIS: She’s
    not a customer? She is also a sex worker? SOMASHEKAR: A sex worker. SARAH HARRIS: And she
    uses this room? SOMASHEKAR: [SPEAKING MARATHI] [SARAH LAUGHING] SOMASHEKAR: That’s another one
    of Anitha’s friends who’s lying in there. Hello. SARAH HARRIS: This is
    what she’s saying? SOMASHEKAR: I am. SARAH HARRIS: You. SARAH HARRIS: Tell me again. So are you talking as you? Are you telling me– Somashekar. SOMASHEKAR: Huh? SARAH HARRIS: So you
    are a sex worker. SOMASHEKAR: I am a sex worker. SARAH HARRIS: You are
    a sex worker. And you came to Anitha’s
    room, and– SARAH HARRIS: Yeah. SARAH HARRIS: You work in
    this room, and Anitha works in this room. SOMASHEKAR: This room. SARAH HARRIS: So you
    all work together. OK. [SPEAKING MARATHI] SARAH HARRIS: The whole place
    is completely difference to what I thought it would be. I kind of imagined these
    really seedy, anonymous hotel-looking brothels. And actually, there’s kids
    running around everywhere. There’s women doing their
    laundry, making lunch. And it kind of feels
    like quite a tight-knit little community. The ladies of Sangli wouldn’t
    let me leave without showing me the temple around
    the corner. It seemed like wherever there
    were brothels, the goddess Yellamma was never far away. For Anitha and her friends,
    being a devadasi was nothing to be ashamed of. Sex work was their choice. They had condoms, power in
    numbers, and SANGRAM looking after them. But these were just
    the lucky few. For the vast majority
    of devadasis, prostitution isn’t a choice. It’s forced upon them, and most
    often by their parents. Like most Hindu legends, the
    story of the goddess Yellamma is long, convoluted,
    and surreal. However many times we
    heard it, it still didn’t make much sense. But it seems to go something
    like this. The whole ordeal begins when her
    son is ordered to chop her head off by her husband after
    he catches her spying on two people getting frisky
    by a lake. After a complex process of
    death, reincarnation, and a load of fat Hindu gods with blue
    skin and gold bikinis, the goddess Yellamma was born. She fled to the villages of
    Karnataka and became a symbol of worship for the lowest
    Hindu castes. So after a really sweaty 10-hour
    train journey, we’ve finally arrived in this
    town called Mudhol up in Northern Karnataka. And it’s in the villages around
    here that we’ve been told has the highest
    concentration of devadasi women in India. An estimated 23,000 women in
    this part of India have been dedicated to the goddess. And roughly half of those will
    have resorted to sex work in order to feed their families. SARAH HARRIS: We traveled to
    the outskirts of this dusty transit town to meet two
    teenage devadasi girls. [SPEAKING KANNADA] SARAH HARRIS: Madigas are
    considered filthy and polluting and are only permitted
    to work in the lowliest positions, as street
    cleaners, sewage collectors, and of course, prostitutes. When we took the girls out
    shopping, they seemed terrified of the higher castes
    recognizing them as devadasis, which they did. [SPEAKING KANNADA] SARAH HARRIS: It was surreal to
    see the reaction they got. The shopkeepers wouldn’t even
    look them in the eye. [SPEAKING KANNADA] SARAH HARRIS: So now it seems
    this religious ritual is just a justification for
    poor families to pimp out their daughters. [SPEAKING KANNADA] SARAH HARRIS: It was strange
    sitting with Belavva’s family on the floor of their one room
    hut, knowing it’s also the place where she has sex with
    customers while her brothers and sisters wait outside. BALAVVA: [SPEAKING KANNADA] [SPEAKING KANNADA] SARAH HARRIS: Karnataka is one
    of India’s largest producers of sugar cane. Hundreds of trucks pass
    through towns like this every day. The roadside can be
    a scary place. Horny drivers and bored
    agricultural workers gather here, looking for ways
    to spend their wages. They are one of the main
    transmitters of HIV throughout India, spreading the virus
    through the country’s extensive road network, putting
    girls like Mala and Belavva at risk of this
    deadly disease. SARAH HARRIS: Back in Sangli,
    we were invited to meet another devadasi called Pandu. We were told she was different,
    but we weren’t prepared for just
    how different. [MALE SPEAKING MARATHI] SARAH HARRIS: Every morning, he
    spent two hours polishing brass Yellamma statues and
    blessing his beloved shrine. [SPEAKING MARATHI] SARAH HARRIS: Can you ask him
    to show me how to make chai? Tea powder. Wow, that’s a lot of sugar. Fucking hell. [SARAH LAUGHING] SARAH HARRIS: Still? Going, going, going,
    going, going. SARAH HARRIS: Can we watch
    him dance today? We have to persuade him,
    sweet talk him. Ah, wow. Wow, Pandu. Who’s this guy? You put a sari over his head. [PANDU SPEAKING MARATHI] SARAH HARRIS: He’s got money
    between his teeth. Your best friend, Sudir. Oh, wow, that’s a nice photo. Wow, thank you. [SPEAKING MARATHI] SARAH HARRIS: Later that day, at
    our hotel, Pandu showed us his favorite Bollywood
    videos and the famous Sangli condom trick. SARAH HARRIS: You’re about to
    witness a demonstration of the classic Sangli condom trick that
    Pandu has just taught me when his male customers don’t
    want to use a condom. [SPEAKING MARATHI] SARAH HARRIS: I think I lost. Pandu may want a better life for
    his daughter, but for many other devadasis, there’s a lot
    of money to be made in recruiting the next
    generation. Now, we’re on our way to another
    village, about five kilometers outside of Mudhol. And most of women who live
    there are from the madiga caste, and so most of them are vulnerable to becoming devadasis. One of the interesting things
    about this village is that we’re going to be able to go
    to the house of a devadasi woman who’s made a real career
    out of prostitution. And she’s built this enormous
    house in the middle of the village as a kind of symbol
    of the her success. So she can become a role model
    to the other girls living in the village that becoming
    a devadasi is a good way of life. The legendary owner, Champa,
    doesn’t even live here. She’s too busy turning
    tricks in Bombay. Inside, shiny display cabinets
    of unused crockery line the walls as testaments
    to her success. There were groups of village
    children roaming around the house to gawp at her flickering
    color TV sets and shelves of broken electrical
    equipment. The message is clear– prostitution is a lucrative
    business. So this is the necklace, the
    muthu, that the devadasi women wear when they get dedicated. And hers is just hanging on
    the wall of her mud hut. She’s an old lady called
    Shavvavva, and she’s one of the oldest devadasi women
    in the village. And I’ve just been told that
    she brought the very first radio to this village. No one had ever seen a radio
    before she brought it here. Walking through the village, we
    notice Yellamma’s presence everywhere. The locals told us that all
    devadasis in the area were preparing themselves for the
    full moon festival, which is apparently the most
    important event in the Yellamma calendar. After hearing so much about the
    famous full moon festival in Saundatti, we drove four
    hours out of town to catch the first day of this month-long
    celebration of Yellamma. Just up there in the center of
    that big arch is the face of the goddess Yellamma. That’s the entrance to her
    temple here in Saundatti. Over the course of the 28 days,
    more than half a million people will pass through
    the temple doors. A heaving shantytown springs
    up around the famous Yellamma shrine. The place is filled with garish
    Hindu icons, Bollywood music, sticky sweets, and the
    symbolic red and yellow colors of the goddess Yellamma. Hello. Nice to meet you. We’re not allowed– we’re not
    gonna take the camera inside. No. SARAH HARRIS: This is the
    Yellamma temple, which is like the main attraction
    of Saundatti. It’s here that for hundreds and
    hundreds of years, all the devadasi girls have come for
    their dedication ceremonies, which are now illegal. And we’re not allowed in, so
    we just have to shoot from outside, but you can see
    hundreds of people walking around, praying to
    the goddess. Everything around the temple
    is really, really colorful, and you’ve got all these red
    and yellow dyes, which the women put on their foreheads. And this is to kind of represent the goddess Yellamma. And the green bangles are in
    rows all along the side of the road here, and they’re the
    bangles that they put on the girls during their devadasi
    dedication ceremonies. And tonight is the moon
    celebration, and they’ll smash their bracelets as a symbol
    of widowhood. This is also one of the places
    where the women traffickers come and pick up potential
    prostitutes. The brothel madams will travel
    from big cities like Bombay and Pune and come to Saundatti
    to these festivals to pick up young girls to traffic. Amidst all the religious fervor,
    there was a distinct feeling of secrets going
    on behind closed doors. Families are offered a generous
    fee in return for their young daughters,
    often under the pretense of a better future. But it’s here that the next
    generation of young devadasi prostitution are found. What we really wanted to do was
    watch a real dedication ceremony, but that didn’t look
    like it was going to happen. And as a bunch of pasty
    Westerners with cameras, we weren’t exactly inconspicuous. Luckily, we met an ex-devadasi
    and social activist called Sitavva. She agreed to stage a mock
    dedication ceremony to give us an idea of what really goes
    on behind the scenes. SITAVVA: [SPEAKING KANNADA] SARAH HARRIS: Leaving Saundatti,
    we felt disturbed by everything we’d seen. The bright colors and energy
    of the festival were overshadowed by the seedy
    reality of a religious ceremony that condones
    child prostitution. Our last stop before we headed
    home was in the small village of Sarol, where we’d arranged
    to meet three generations of devadasi women, all from
    the same family. When we arrived, we were told
    that the daughter had recently died of HIV. [SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE] SARAH HARRIS: India is a land
    of extremes, polarized by extravagant new wealth
    and ancient poverty. Everywhere you look, there’s a
    battle being waged between the traditional forces of religion,
    castes, and superstition and the inevitable
    force of Western capitalism. Nowhere are these clashes more
    evident than in the plight of the devadasis, where religious
    devotion has been exploited for commercial gain. The devadasi tradition is
    destroying families and communities, generation
    after generation. And with the advent of AIDS and
    HIV, the practice now has a deadly price tag. And today, any remnants of the
    devadasis’ cultural origins have all but disappeared. All that’s left is a system
    that turns children into prostitutes and their
    parents into pimps.

    Hunting for Dinosaur Tracks!
    Articles, Blog

    Hunting for Dinosaur Tracks!

    November 25, 2019


    (tense music) – What’s going on guys? Now, you’re used to us
    bringing you episodes of Breaking Trail where
    I’m catching live animals, but, today, we’re gonna do
    something a little different. We’re headed off into
    the back country of Utah to search for dinosaur tracks! Now, as most of you know, I
    absolutely love dinosaurs, so what I’m gonna do is trade in my cowboy hat for this helmet as we ride on these
    awesome Polaris RZRs onto the rough
    and rugged terrain to search out these tracks. Alright, hop in, guys! This is gonna be awesome! Woo! (engine roars) Yahoo! (tribal theme music) In most of our adventures,
    we break trail on foot, however sometimes the best way to cover many miles
    of distance quickly is by way of
    all-terrain vehicle. Today, the crew and I
    are in Hurricane, Utah, one of the best
    places in the west to find and get close
    to dinosaur tracks. This is awesome,
    we finally made it! Let’s head back in there
    and find the tracks! Woo! (haunting music) Aw, man, this is epic! Just this backdrop, I
    mean, you can’t beat this! It is hot, it is dusty. Look at this, check this out. Do you see all the
    dust coming off of me? – [Mark] Oh, yeah. – Woo, it is, what
    do you think it is? About 100 degrees
    out here, right now? – [Mark] At least. – At least 100 degrees, and look at how bone dry
    this is, check this out. Look at that, it
    is just red dust. It’s amazing to think
    that, at one point in time, dinosaurs were walking right
    through this environment. Alright, I think, if we head
    down through this ravine, here, we’re gonna find some! Wow, check that out! Dinosaurs passed this way, this is the whole area that we’re gonna be exploring,
    right here on the side. That’s where we are. You’ve got Megapnosaurus
    and Dilophosaurus tracks. Dilophosaurus are much larger. You see, right there,
    huge compared to a human. I can’t imagine what
    it would be like to have actually seen
    one of these walking in this environment
    120 million years ago. Now, let’s go find the tracks! (piano music) And even though
    this is sloped down, at one point in time, before water washed through
    here and wore the rock away, this could have been flatter, so I’m always
    looking at an angle for any indentation in the rock has the potential to be a track. I mean, look how
    deceiving this is. That almost looks like
    a toe, right there. Wow, I wonder if that
    could be a track? It’s not defined enough
    to prove that, though. Alright, let’s keep going! This is actually great
    substrate, right here. Check this out, look at
    this, Mark, look at this. We just found our first
    set of dinosaur tracks. This is Megapnosaurus,
    right here, a small, upright
    walking therapod, and you can see
    where this animal moved right through
    the environment. Look at this, I’m gonna step
    right next to the tracks. Look at that stride! Wow, that’s so cool, walking
    right along side dinosaurs! You ever think you’d be
    able to do that, Mark? – [Mark] No! I’d never thought I’d
    see a dinosaur track. – I know! – [Mark] This is amazing! – Check this one out. That’s actually really cool. So, it took a real
    sharp turn, right here, and probably headed
    off in that direction, but if you come up here
    a little bit further, you got the larger
    Dilophosaur tracks. Check this out. These are Dilophosaur tracks. Look how big this animal was! Here, come up through this way, you can see this one best. Look at that! – [Mark] Wow! – Wow, what a giant! Dilophosaurus is famous
    because it was featured in Steven Spielberg’s
    Jurassic Park. If you remember,
    it was the one that had the big frill that came
    out and it spit the venom. Now, scientists do not believe that this dinosaur
    actually had those frills, but the filmmakers took
    the liberty of giving that dinosaur these
    traits to make it a little bit more scary. Look at how big they are! In the movie, the
    Dilophosaur they featured was much smaller than this, but you can see with my hand
    right down there in the track, this is not a carnivore
    that you would just wanna stumble upon
    out here in the desert. How awesome is that! – [Mark] Did you ever
    think you’d be, like, standing right in
    a dinosaur track? – No, I didn’t! I’ve never seen dinosaur
    tracks before out in the wild, and you can almost feel
    the energy of this animal when you put your hand
    into the track like that. Okay, so these tracks that
    we’re looking at, right here, anybody can come and see these. What we wanna do now is actually
    head off into the desert and see if we can find
    some for ourselves. You guys ready to do this? – [Mark] Let’s do it! – It’s gonna be dry,
    it’s gonna be hot, and it’s gonna be dusty, but I’m pretty confident that we’re gonna find some
    tracks of our own! (hopeful music) There’s a hole. Oh, check this out! This could be a track! Yes!
    (tense music) Chance, come up
    here, look at this! You got one here, one here, wow! I think this is it, I think these are
    actual dinosaur tracks! This one, right here,
    is almost perfect. Bring your camera up. Come here, come here, come here! Look at this! Look over my shoulder,
    look at that. Three distinct toe marks. Alright, I’m gonna blow
    the sand on you, ready? Yes, there’s no
    question about it, that is an upright
    walking therapod, most likely a carnivore, and guessing on the
    size of these tracks, I’m saying it’s
    probably four feet tall, and close to 11 feet in length. Not an animal that
    you would want to run into out here
    65 million years ago. Holy cow, this is exciting! Dude, high five! I cannot believe we
    actually came across tracks, and look at this, you got one
    here, and look at that stride. Here to here, shorter there,
    planted, and then off, and who knows, I mean, this rock could have broken apart
    millions of years ago, but you got one right
    here, and one right there. And, oh my gosh, we actually
    came across dinosaur tracks. Now this was objective number
    one, find dinosaur tracks. Well, we found them. The good news is that we
    still have a couple hours out here in the desert,
    and we have those RZRs, so objective number
    two is gonna be to head to the sand dunes
    and really have some fun. I hope you guys are ready,
    ’cause this is gonna be awesome! – [Mark] Yeah, come in, guys. (tribal drum music) – [Coyote] Woohoo! What up? – [Mark] What’d you think man? We brought you out in the field! – I know, this is
    frickin’ awesome! This is killer!
    – I mean, dude! – [Mark] Can you
    think of a better trip to come along with, jeez? – Yeah, the walls
    in the editing bay do not look like
    these mountains. It is amazing out here. (engine roars) (rock music) – [Coyote] Woohoo! Yep, I’m stuck! Woohoo, it’s a little
    bumpy, right there! – [Mark] I don’t know
    if I got the whole flip, but that was gnarly! – [Coyote] Ouch! – [Mark] You alright? – Well guys, rule number one, if you flip the RZR, is always
    to keep your arms inside. Thankfully, I’m walking
    away from yet another one. Aw, man! I was barely even turning! I don’t know how
    that thing flipped! (tense music) But it, ah, yeah, I flipped it. You know, if I’m not
    falling off of a cliff, I’m flipping a vehicle. That’s why we just usually
    don’t let me do these things. (laughs) A good lesson here is that if you do roll a
    machine like this, you just hold on to
    the steering wheel, keep your hands inside, you’re always wearing
    your seat belt, always wearing the helmet, and, so far, I’m walking away from this one
    completely unscathed. My back and neck might be
    a little sore tomorrow, but no broken
    bones, no stitches. We’re having to bungee
    cord the door shut, ’cause that’s broken. I cracked the top of
    it, and, unfortunately, I may have just bought the
    Brave Wilderness team a RZR, because this is gonna be
    an expensive one to fix. My bad! – [Mark] Woo,
    alright Coyote, well, that’s one way to do it in Utah. – Yeah, I say it was an
    extremely successful day. We found dinosaur
    tracks, that was awesome. Then we came out here to
    the dunes to rip up the sand with our RZRs, and I
    kind of rolled mine, but the good news is, no
    cuts, no broken bones, and, yet again, I walk away from another Breaking
    Trail mishap. All I can say is that
    Utah is unbelievably epic! – [Chris] Yessir! – I’m Coyote Peterson, be brave, stay wild, always
    wear your helmet, we’ll see you on
    the next adventure! Here we go! Eh, buckle up! Woo! (engine roars) If you thought flipping
    my RZR was a close call, make sure to go back
    and watch the time I missed a jump and fell
    off a cliff in Arizona. – [Woman] Oh my God! – [Coyote] Yikes,
    and don’t forget, subscribe to the Brave
    Wilderness channel, so you can join me and the
    crew on the next location. (coyote howls)

    Suspicion and Intrigue on the Track at the Barcelona 1992 Olympics | Strangest Moments
    Articles, Blog

    Suspicion and Intrigue on the Track at the Barcelona 1992 Olympics | Strangest Moments

    November 21, 2019


    When Khalid Skah stepped on
    the podium in 1992, two days after winning the
    men’s 10,000 metres, the Barcelona crowd made it
    clear what it thought of the Moroccan’s performance. The jeers that rained down on
    Skah greeted one of the most controversial victories in
    modern Olympic Games history. In the minds of those fans, Skah was one of the all-time
    Olympic Games sinners, alongside his team-mate and
    alleged co-conspirator, Hammou Boutayeb. The men stood accused of
    engineering a cynical triumph that went beyond the limits
    of acceptable race strategy. Richard Chelimo of Kenya had been denied gold by his
    archrivals from North Africa,
    who had run the race as a team. The accusations were far
    from proven. Boutayeb’s behaviour was
    certainly unusual, but in the eyes of some
    observers, he was innocent. Perhaps it was karma. The Kenyans themselves had
    often been accused of some dubious team racing. Either way, Skah’s triumph
    felt very hollow indeed. In 1992, the Kenyans and
    Moroccans were the kings of long-distance running. Morocco had the reigning
    Olympic champion in its ranks, but Kenya dominated
    the 10,000 metres at the World Championships the
    previous year. Eight of the world’s 11 fastest
    men over the distance were Kenyan. In Barcelona, the scene was set
    for the next battle. The atmosphere was hostile. And by the time the race
    was 6,500 metres old, all other parties slipped away. It was Chelimo verus Skah,
    head-to-head. That, at least, was how it
    seemed. But coming towards
    the end of lap 22, the race leaders encountered
    that man, Boutayeb. He was second last, a back
    marker, a man whose only job now was to
    move aside and be lapped. But Boutayeb would not be
    moved. And what happened over the next
    few laps was the source of
    the controversy. Boutayeb wouldn’t get out
    of the way. Chelimo and Skah overtook him, but then he overtook them right
    back. They passed again, but Boutayeb run alongside
    them, then he got back in front. What was Boutayeb doing
    back there, anyway? He was 36,
    but still an elite athlete. It looked like
    a Moroccan conspiracy. The idea seemed to be too slow
    down and distract Chelimo with all the suspicious
    shenanigans, and then allow Skah to run
    clear. Race officials thought it was
    odd. The chairman of the IAAF
    technical committee stepped onto the track to try and hold back Boutayeb. The crowd grew restless,
    and booed what they saw. And even after Skah sprinted
    clear of Chelimo to cross the line first, and blew kisses to the
    supporters, he found he had few. They believed they had
    witnessed a con. Almost immediately,
    the authorities concurred. The IAAF disqualified Skah,
    citing a breach of rule 143.2. But Skah said he had no idea
    what Boutayeb had been up to. They weren’t even friends. Skah said Boutayeb was an
    animal and an imbecile. TRANSLATION: I think as a
    former champion it was an embarrassment for him
    to be lapped. The authorities were stung by
    claims that they had been hasty. Skah said they were racist
    and thieves. And the IAAF relented again. They reinstated Skah and gave
    him the gold medal. But what was the truth?
    Will we ever know? Chelimo said he heard Boutayeb
    and Skah talking to each other on the track.
    What was being said? TRANSLATION: I was yelling at
    him to go away. “You are making big troubles.
    You are making big troubles.” But inside the big stadium
    was 50,000 people yelling and whistling, you cannot hear
    anything. The Kenyans threatened to walk
    out. The credibility of the sport
    was in jeopardy. But Boutayeb remained silent, even as Skah stepped onto
    the podium to receive his medal. What could I do? It was my duty and obligation to go out there and face it as
    best as I could. I was smiling, but
    very sad inside. My honour was at stake. And I would not go out and face
    them if I had felt I had dishonoured myself.

    Articles

    Update Bullet trains? Monorails? An end to speed limits? Californias transportation future is going

    November 14, 2019


    Update Bullet trains? Monorails? An end to speed limits? Californias transportation future is going On Monday, my wife and daughter and I traveled home from Oakland by plane, and on landing in Burbank, my wife immediately did the math. Door to door, our trip would have taken only 90 minutes longer if we had driven, and it would have been much cheaper. Should we have traveled by sedan instead of by Southwest Airlines? If the high speed rail line were up and running, and both the time and price were somewhere between flying and driving, that might have been a preferable option. But the train is stuck in limbo, and its not clear from his conflicting statements whetherGavinjust blew the whistle or leaped off the caboose. I want to slap myself for saying this, but you can hardly blame President Trump for that hes trying to stiff us on a dollar 929 million federal grant for the project. Ill revisit the bullet train in a moment, but given the likelihood that were never going to get it together on rail, state Sen. John Moorlach of Orange County has pitched a bill to Freeways through the Central Valley on which you could drive like hell, with no speed limits. Buckle up, hit the gas and go. Burbank is a blur, Fresno a flash. Youre moving so fast, you cant even smell the cow manure at Harris Ranch. If Moorlachs idea sounds crazy to you, theres a reason for that. By my calculations, half the people behind the wheel dont know what theyre doing at any speed. Do we want lawmakers telling them to pretend theyre NASCAR drivers? Back when Montana law allowed you to drive as fast as you considered reasonable and prudent, I rented a car in Great Falls and drove at the speed of sound approximately to Helena, where the Legislature was already considering a return to numerical speed limits. When I hit 112 miles an hour in a Toyota Camry, my teeth rattled, the doors felt like they might blow off and the ghosts of my ancestors danced before me. Even free spirited, get off our backs Montanans realized this was insane, and imposed a 75 mph speed limit in 1999. But Californians are a delusional denomination, and we cant let go of the dream that getting from here to there is going to be easier one day, even though all our choices guarantee the exact opposite. We keep growing, we move ever greater distances from our jobs, and 3 in 4 of us drive alone in our cars. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is studying congestion pricing, and my vote is yes, right now, lets go. You take the most congested places in the region and charge people to drive in those areas when traffic is worst, which means that some drivers wont bother. So theres less traffic and less pollution. Yeah, there are downsides. You dont want a system that punishes the poor and gives rich people yet another break. But its worked elsewhere and it can work here, if planners could design a system that gives a break to low income people who have to drive for their jobs. Then you take the congestion fees to build more and better transit. The same MTA is considering transit options for the Sepulveda Pass, including tunneling through the mountain or stringing a monorail up and over the hill. Thats how desperate we are to relieve congestion we cant stop looking to Disneyland for answers. OK, fine, but why are we always focused on the wrong ride? Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is the model we should be looking to. Make transit easy, fun and economical and people might ditch their cars. If the open air Big Thunder train barreled over and through the pass, with passengers screaming and their hair flying as they blew by the Getty, Id move to Sherman Oaks just to ride it every day. But seriously, were never going to get anywhere, so to speak, without some smart local decisions and more clarity from Sacramento. I appreciated Jerry Browns push for the bullet train as a centerpiece of his green agenda, but Uncle Jerry did a lousy job of selling the train, and his vision ended up being more of a hallucination. Way too many delays, massive cost overuns, millions in lawsuits and no funding in sight going forward. On Tuesday, the chairman of the high speed rail board resigned. As a candidate, Gavin Newsom was so wishy washy you couldnt tell where he stood. And when he finally spoke last week, he only created more confusion. One day it sounded like the train was dead; the next day Newsom said the media blew the story. What did we do wrong? But lets be real, Newsom had said in a speech. The current project, as planned, would cost too much and respectfully take too long. Theres been too little oversight and not enough transparency. Right now, there simply isnt a path to get from Sacramento to San Diego, let alone from San Francisco to L.A. I wish there were. However, we do have the capacity to complete a high speed rail link between Merced and Bakersfield. Does that look unclear to you? It doesnt to me. I figured it meant the train was off the rails. Others saw it the same way, and the backlash was immediate. Newsoms people then scrambled to straighten things out, and the governor himself attempted to clarify, saying he hasnt given up on the bigger project. If thats true, Id like to make one recommendation to the governor. Go to Disneyland, take a ride on the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, and imagine traveling from San Diego to San Francisco on that.

    Bullet trains? Monorails? An end to speed limits? Californias transportation future is going to be a
    Articles, Blog

    Bullet trains? Monorails? An end to speed limits? Californias transportation future is going to be a

    October 21, 2019


    Bullet trains? Monorails? An end to speed limits? Californias transportation future is going to be a On Monday, my wife and daughter and I traveled home from Oakland by plane, and on landing in Burbank, my wife immediately did the math. Door to door, our trip would have taken only 90 minutes longer if we had driven, and it would have been much cheaper. Should we have traveled by sedan instead of by Southwest Airlines? If the high speed rail line were up and running, and both the time and price were somewhere between flying and driving, that might have been a preferable option. But the train is stuck in limbo, and its not clear from his conflicting statements whetherGavinjust blew the whistle or leaped off the caboose. I want to slap myself for saying this, but you can hardly blame President Trump for that hes trying to stiff us on a dollar 929 million federal grant for the project. Ill revisit the bullet train in a moment, but given the likelihood that were never going to get it together on rail, state Sen. John Moorlach of Orange County has pitched a bill to Freeways through the Central Valley on which you could drive like hell, with no speed limits. Buckle up, hit the gas and go. Burbank is a blur, Fresno a flash. Youre moving so fast, you cant even smell the cow manure at Harris Ranch. If Moorlachs idea sounds crazy to you, theres a reason for that. By my calculations, half the people behind the wheel dont know what theyre doing at any speed. Do we want lawmakers telling them to pretend theyre NASCAR drivers? Back when Montana law allowed you to drive as fast as you considered reasonable and prudent, I rented a car in Great Falls and drove at the speed of sound approximately to Helena, where the Legislature was already considering a return to numerical speed limits. When I hit 112 miles an hour in a Toyota Camry, my teeth rattled, the doors felt like they might blow off and the ghosts of my ancestors danced before me. Even free spirited, get off our backs Montanans realized this was insane, and imposed a 75 mph speed limit in 1999. But Californians are a delusional denomination, and we cant let go of the dream that getting from here to there is going to be easier one day, even though all our choices guarantee the exact opposite. We keep growing, we move ever greater distances from our jobs, and 3 in 4 of us drive alone in our cars. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is studying congestion pricing, and my vote is yes, right now, lets go. You take the most congested places in the region and charge people to drive in those areas when traffic is worst, which means that some drivers wont bother. So theres less traffic and less pollution. Yeah, there are downsides. You dont want a system that punishes the poor and gives rich people yet another break. But its worked elsewhere and it can work here, if planners could design a system that gives a break to low income people who have to drive for their jobs. Then you take the congestion fees to build more and better transit. The same MTA is considering transit options for the Sepulveda Pass, including tunneling through the mountain or stringing a monorail up and over the hill. Thats how desperate we are to relieve congestion we cant stop looking to Disneyland for answers. OK, fine, but why are we always focused on the wrong ride? Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is the model we should be looking to. Make transit easy, fun and economical and people might ditch their cars. If the open air Big Thunder train barreled over and through the pass, with passengers screaming and their hair flying as they blew by the Getty, Id move to Sherman Oaks just to ride it every day. But seriously, were never going to get anywhere, so to speak, without some smart local decisions and more clarity from Sacramento. I appreciated Jerry Browns push for the bullet train as a centerpiece of his green agenda, but Uncle Jerry did a lousy job of selling the train, and his vision ended up being more of a hallucination. Way too many delays, massive cost overuns, millions in lawsuits and no funding in sight going forward. On Tuesday, the chairman of the high speed rail board resigned. As a candidate, Gavin Newsom was so wishy washy you couldnt tell where he stood. And when he finally spoke last week, he only created more confusion. One day it sounded like the train was dead; the next day Newsom said the media blew the story. What did we do wrong? But lets be real, Newsom had said in a speech. The current project, as planned, would cost too much and respectfully take too long. Theres been too little oversight and not enough transparency. Right now, there simply isnt a path to get from Sacramento to San Diego, let alone from San Francisco to L.A. I wish there were. However, we do have the capacity to complete a high speed rail link between Merced and Bakersfield. Does that look unclear to you? It doesnt to me. I figured it meant the train was off the rails. Others saw it the same way, and the backlash was immediate. Newsoms people then scrambled to straighten things out, and the governor himself attempted to clarify, saying he hasnt given up on the bigger project. If thats true, Id like to make one recommendation to the governor. Go to Disneyland, take a ride on the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, and imagine traveling from San Diego to San Francisco on that.

    STUNG by a BULLET ANT!
    Articles, Blog

    STUNG by a BULLET ANT!

    October 17, 2019


    (slow instrumental music) – We have caught a bullet ant, and we have it in
    the glass capsule, and right now Mark is filming
    the final macro shots. And I am two, yes,
    two minutes away from being stung by the
    insect that supposedly has the most painful sting
    in the insect kingdom. I think I’m gonna be fine, but ooo, guys, the heart
    rate is goin’ today. This is it. (bold instrumental music) One…
    (heavy breathing) Two… (heavy breathing)
    Three. (grunting)
    Ahhh! Ooo! It’s stuck in my arm! It’s stuck in my arm! Ahhh! (upbeat world music) (slow world music) Hidden within the darkness
    of the Costa Rican rainforest a legend exists beneath
    the ancient canopy. Indigenous people
    refer to it as bala, which means bullet. It is rumored that just a
    single sting from this animal is so excruciating that it feels as if one has been
    shot with a gun. They say this creature is
    not only to be avoided, but feared by all
    who hear it’s name. Bala. (whispers) Bala. Over the course of the past year I have taken on the
    challenge of being stung by some of the planets
    most notorious insects. It all began with
    harvester ants. A common species in the
    southwestern United States, that hails as having
    the most toxic insect venom in the world. I took around 60 stings, and walked away
    mostly unscathed. They’re all over my
    hands now, look at that! Ahh! (grunting) Ahh, there’s one on my neck! Next, I buried my hands
    into a nest of fire ants. The pain was like
    sticking your hands into a burning ring of fire. Ahh! Ow, ow, ow! The after math? One of my biggest regrets, as my hands were
    swollen for a month, and permanently scarred
    even till this day. One would think I
    had gone far enough, and then we came
    upon the velvet ant. Famous for having the
    longest stinger in the world, it sent me into agonizing
    pain for nearly 30 minutes. Ahh! (grunting) (heavy breathing) Okay, let me get back here! – [Cameraman] You alright? What are you feeling? – Gooo! (heavy breathing) Oh wow! My next challenge was
    the tarantula hawk, which is ranked as the
    second most painful sting in the insect kingdom. Here we go. (pacing instrumental music) Ahhh! Ahhh! (heavy breathing) – [Cameraman] You alright?
    – Ahhh! The pain was so intense
    that it put me on the ground with my arm in a
    state of paralysis for nearly five minutes. Ahhh! I can’t move my arm! I was ascending the
    sting pain index, and I could see the
    peak of the mountain. It looked down at me
    with black beady eyes, an alien looking creature
    amongst all other animals, and a name that cast fear
    into the hearts of men. But before I could
    go flesh to stinger, first we needed to
    find a bullet ant. Today is bullet
    ant challenge day. I’m actually pretty
    excited about this. As long as we could
    find a bullet ant, I’m gonna get stung by one. So, guys keep your eyes peeled, these little ants
    can be anywhere. Well, I guess they
    aren’t really little. They’re probably about this big. So, let’s head down here
    into the rainforest, and see if we could find one. – [Cameraman] Alright. – Believe it or not, bullet
    ants are incredibly common on the Caribbean
    side of Costa Rica. And setting the
    stage for a sting was only going to
    take a single one. It seems simple, however, finding them can be
    quite the challenge, especially when dealing
    with some of the most difficult filming conditions
    we have ever faced. Oh boy, that is the disorienting
    thing about the rainforest, everything looks the same no
    matter what direction you turn. Mario! (man shouting in the distance) Yeah, alright, found him, ha! Got nervous there for a second. Let’s keep going. For days we scoured the jungle, traversed rushing rivers, fought torrential rainfall, and sloshed through what seemed
    like a endless maze of mud. The goal was to find a creature
    no longer than a needle, in a haystack that literally
    spanned thousands of acres. It seems as if all was lost. Then finally, after
    several days of searching, the sun came out and
    fate took its course. I just saw an ant
    up on the tree here. Come up really slow, this might be a nest. – [Mario] You think
    you got a nest? – I mean, the ground
    looks the same as it has in most of the jungle, but there is a hole here, I definitely saw a large ant
    moving up on the side of that but before I just
    storm up there. – [Mario] You just see
    one or you see a few? – I saw one ant, one ant, but this looks like
    there’s a hole right there. – [Mario] Where? – [Coyote] You see that, this
    looks like it could be a nest. – [Cameraman] I
    don’t see the hole. Keep pointing to it. Oh, I just saw it. – [Coyote] There’s one
    coming out right there. – [Mario] I see it coming out. – He’s definitely right there. Let me see if I can
    get him on the stick. There we go, there we go. – [Mario] You got him? – Ooo, it’s going
    right towards my hand. That is a bullet ant
    right there, hold on. I’m just gonna put
    it in the container. Ooo! Ah! Oh! – [Mario] Mark, watch out. I think there is… – [Mark] I got one on me? – [Mario] I think so, man. I think they’re swarming. – We have definitely
    found a bullet ant nest, there’s no question about it. I was in there trying
    to get a single ant, and they started swarming out. Okay, this just went
    from slightly dangerous to extremely dangerous
    because there was one crawled up on my hand
    and I just got startled, and I flicked it off of me. I need to go back to
    get the container, we need to get an ant. (weary instrumental music) Alright, come on,
    get on the stick. – [Mario] Got one. – [Coyote] My hand’s
    shaking, I got one. Nope, it came off. (weary instrumental music) I got one, I got one. Back up, back up, back up. It’s goin’ right
    towards my hand! Oh boy, it’s attacking
    the tip of the stick. I’m gonna put it down
    right here on the dirt! Ah! Alright, I’m gonna
    get it in this cup. Got it! – [Mario] It walked right in! – Ha-Ha! Whoo! (laughs) Holy cow! Oh my gosh! Hold on wait, check your
    legs, check your legs. – [Mario] See anything on me? – [Mark] No, you’re good. – Oh my gosh! (heavy breathing) If I was that nervous
    just to catch the ant, I can’t imagine how
    nervous I’m going to be to actually be stung by it. Awe, this is wild. Alright, let’s take the ant
    down here into a flatter area, get the scene under control. It’s time to go through with
    the bullet ant challenge. – [Mario] Let’s do it. – Whoo! Yes! Got our ant! (leery instrumental music) Guys, I don’t know, I
    don’t know, I don’t know. We have caught a bullet ant, and we have it in
    the glass capsule, and right now Mark is filming
    the final macro shots, and I am two, yes,
    two minutes away from being stung by the
    insect that’s supposedly has that most painful sting
    in the insect kingdom. Actually seeing the
    bullet ant face to face, coyote pack, it is
    unbelievably intimidating. I have a feeling
    that it is going to be unbelievably painful, but I am ready. (deep breath)
    This is it. We are here. This is Costa Rica, and
    that ladies and gentlemen, dare I say it, is one
    monster sized bullet ant. Alright, before
    we get into this, let’s just go over
    some basic safety. For everybody out
    there watching, we have taken all the
    proper medical precautions. What we have right here
    is an epinephrin pen in case my body reacts
    negatively to the venom. Now, I will note that
    there are no reported cases of humans dying from the
    sting of a bullet ant. – [Mark] Alright Coyote,
    so what’s the game plan? What are you thinkin’ here? How are we gonna get you
    stung by the bullet ant? – Yeah, how are we gonna get
    me stung by the bullet ant? I love the that question Mark, I appreciate that. Okay, well this one is very
    similar to the velvet ant. This is gonna go
    down one of two ways. The first thing
    that we’re gonna try is I’m gonna lift up
    the glass capsule, and then we’re gonna
    place it there. If it doesn’t sting me like that then I will use the forceps where I will pick it
    up by it’s thorax, and just like the tarantula
    hawk induce a sting. One way or another, there is no question about
    it ladies and gentlemen, today I am going to be
    stung by a bullet ant. – [Mark] Alright, it’s time. – GoPro rolling? We are rolling. Alright, now what I’m gonna do
    is tip up the glass capsule, and then place the ant
    down onto my forearm. Here we go. Mark, your shot good? – [Mark] Are you
    sure about this? – Yep, no turning back now. Mario, ready? – [Mario] Ready. – [Mark] Let’s do it. – Here we go, ant on my skin. One… Two… This is it, no turning back. Three. (heavy breathing) Ant is on my forearm. Look at that. Okay, it’s just trying to
    climb out of the glass. I don’t know if it’s realized
    it’s actually on my arm. It is looking a
    little bit agitated. I can feel the little legs
    grabbin’ onto my skin, and right now it is just trying
    to get out of the capsule. It’s thinking, “Okay,
    something’s new.” They can probably sense
    the heat of my skin, and also the smell of my skin. These ants can pick up
    different pheromones. We’ll let it go a
    few seconds longer. (heavy breathing) And I think similar
    to the velvet ant that this ant is
    gonna need to be held with forceps to induce a sting. Okay, I’m going to tip
    the glass capsule back up, and get the ant under control. Are you ready? – [Mark] Yep. – One, two, control. Here we go. – [Mark] Whoo-hoo, awe man! – Dah! – [Mark] You alright? – I got the GoPro. – [Mark] Tell me what’s going
    through your head right now. What was that like? – I’m lightheaded,
    I’m lightheaded. Oh, the nerves that
    that takes guys. When the ants were
    coming out of the nest they were very very angry, and I think at this point
    the ant has calmed down, and it’s just thinking, “Can I get out of
    this glass capsule?” And I was not bitten,
    I was not stung. So, what I’m gonna do
    now is use the forceps to pick up the ant,
    place it onto my forearm, and I’m going to take a sting. Here we go, are you ready? – [Mark] I’m ready. – GoPro is rolling. Okay, I am literally
    at the summit of the insect sting pain index. So, what I’m gonna do
    now is remove the glass. (heavy breathing) Ant is live, okay. It is out and active. I am going to now pick
    it up with the forceps. Got it. (heavy breathing)
    There we go. That right there is a perfect
    hold right on the thorax, and wow, look at that, the
    stinger is already flying. Does that give you
    enough space there Mark to be able to see the stinger
    as it goes into my arm? – [Mark] Yes sir. – We’ve got clear
    visibility on the abdomen. Here we go. I’m going to move the little
    wooden base out of the way. The glass capsule is
    right here in frame. Forearm on the table. I’m Coyote Peterson, and I’m about to take on
    the bullet ant challenge. Are you ready? – [Mark] Let’s do it. – One… (deep breath) Two… Oh my gosh, this is it. Three… Dah! Oh! Oh, it’s tuck in my arm! It’s stuck in my arm! Ooo! Gosh! The stingers
    stuck in my arm look at that! Ooo! Okay, it’s off, it’s off! Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! Ooo! – [Mark] You alright? – Oh my God, it is really bad! Oh my gosh, I think it has
    the tarantula hawk topped! (bold instrumental music) Gooo! – [Mark] You alright man? – Yep! Ho! Did you see that? The stinger was stuck into my
    forearm right into the vein! There is the sting
    insertion point right there. Oh my gosh! It is like, rrr, it’s hot! Oh, I can feel the venom
    already right in my forearm! (heavy breathing) Ahh! (grunting) It is! It’s number one! Ahh! (heavy breathing) Oh my gosh! Oh, it’s burning more! It’s getting worse! Hold on, hold on, hold on! Ahh! Ahh!
    (heavy breathing) Ah, my whole arm is
    getting really tight. (heavy breathing) Oh my gosh, Mark, put
    your arm out here! Just tell them, feel my forearm! – [Mark] Wow. – It is like rock hard, I think it’s spasming
    up the muscle. Now, the toxin that
    comes out of the sting of a bullet ant is
    a poneratoxin toxin, which can cause
    you to hallucinate, so I don’t know how much venom
    actually went into my arm. All I know is that the
    stinger was in my forearm for a considerable
    amount of time. Ahhh! (grunting) Oh my gosh! Owe, oh! Dude, I think my neck is
    having a muscle spasm too. My whole muscle structure
    is like pounded right now. Ahh! What is that? Okay, that’s not good,
    let’s keep an eye on that. My neck is like stiffening up. My entire arm feels like it’s
    having a spasm right now. (heavy breathing) Okay. – [Mark] Is it getting
    better or worse? – No, it’s worse, it’s
    coming in waves of pain now. Oh my gosh! It is, hold on, I am
    super light headed, like super light headed.
    (heavy breathing) – [Mark] Do you need some water? – [Mario] You’re getting flush,
    your face is turning red. And you’re getting
    puffy under your eye. (heavy breathing) – I’m sweating
    bullets right now. Bullets, bullets of sweat
    from the bullet ant. Okay, I’m gonna try
    to stay composed. We’re gonna have to cut
    the scene pretty quickly. I’m in a lot of pain right now. Okay, at the moment, I am experiencing hot
    radiating waves of pain. It feels as if someone has
    stabbed me with a hot poker, and I can actually feel
    the venom, it’s throbbing, it’s very similar to the
    bite of the gila monster. When I was bitten by the gila
    monster it was intense pain, and then it would reside, and then it would
    return with a vengeance. This is…
    (heavy breathing) At this point, the tarantula
    hawk was already done hurting. This is gettin’ worse,
    this is gettin’ worse. I don’t know if I’m gonna be
    able to take this for 24 hours. (laughing) It pumped me full of venom. This is gonna be bad. It’s one thing to get tagged, and you know, to be,
    “Ahh! I got stung!” It’s another thing to be like, I’m just hoping you
    got that shot Mark where it was literally
    latched on and stinging me. Ooo, I am sweating
    bullets right now. It is humid, but
    my body’s on fire. It’s been about 20
    minutes since the sting, and look at my arm. It feels like it is on fire
    about up to my shoulder, extremely painful
    right in that region, it’s red, it is swollen, but I feel composed enough to
    give you guys a proper outro. Now, they say that this pain
    is gonna last for 24 hours, and my goodness, if it does,
    I’m in for one wild day. But I think it goes
    without question that the bullet ant
    sting is the most painful that I have faced thus far on
    the insect sting pain index. However, as some
    of you may know, there are whispers
    that there is possibly a more painful sting out there. The warrior wasp may challenge
    the bullet ant’s claim at the peak of the
    insect sting pain index. Am I gonna be willing to
    take on that challenge, stay tuned, we’ll find out. I’m Coyote Peterson,
    be brave, stay wild! We’ll see you on
    the next adventure! Whoo! What a day! As we returned this legendary
    creature back to its colony, the insect was immediately
    greeted by the other ants. Like a soldier who had
    returned from a great battle, and who would perhaps
    share its tale of the giant human it had
    defeated with a single sting. And as I watched this
    fearless gladiator disappear into the darkness, from my perspective I too felt
    as if I had defeated a giant. A giant ladder I challenge
    my self to climb, and we’ve all come to know as
    the insect sting pain index. I am proud to say I made it, and when it comes to
    the most painful sting in the insect kingdom, so far, it definitely belongs
    to the bullet ant. It has been a long 24 hours. Now, they say that the bullet
    ant is the 24 hour ant. My arm is still sore today. Guys, looks at my arm. I think the venom actually
    scarred the skin right there. I don’t know if you
    can see it on my face, I’m exhausted, barely
    slept at all last night because my arm was
    just pulsating. I could feel these hot waves
    of pain going though it. I guess we’ll see where
    it’s at in 48 hours. It’s still stinging now. Legends are born from
    the stories we are told, and as they are passed down
    from generation to generation they often times
    become so grandiose they are nearly
    impossible to believe. But when it comes to
    the legend of bala, trust me when I say
    the tales are true. If you thought the bullet
    ant sting was intense, make sure to check
    out the aftermath, and the steps I took
    to immediately reduce
    the searing pain. And don’t forget subscribe, so you can join me and the crew on this season of
    Breaking Trail. (bold world music)
    (birds chirping)

    Articles

    Contra A Copa: The Other Side of Brazil’s World Cup (Part 3)

    October 9, 2019


    L’hélicoptère survole la manifestation
    avec une caméra, et on peut la suivre en temps réel. La Coupe du monde n’aura pas lieu ! [CONTRA A COPA
    PARTIE 3 SUR 4] Afin d’accueillir la Coupe du monde,
    la FIFA a demandé au Brésil de grands changements en termes de sécurité et d’infrastructures. Dans les rues de Rio, ça s’est traduit par
    une guerre contre les trafiquants de drogue. En réalité, les faits montrent que c’était plutôt
    une guerre contre les populations révoltées des favelas. Mais les habitants ont contre-attaqué,
    des policiers ont été tués et un de leurs hélicoptères a été détruit. Dans le nord de Rio,
    à 4 km du stade du Mondial, 8 000 familles ont occupé
    un bâtiment de télécom abandonné. En avril dernier, quand l’heure était venue de les virer
    pour laisser place au foot, les rues se sont embrasées. “La Coupe du monde n’aura pas lieu” est devenu
    le cri de ralliement de tout le pays, et particulièrement celui des favelas. La Coupe du monde n’aura pas lieu ! La Coupe du monde n’aura pas lieu ! Chaque exécution de la police a fait monter l’hostilité envers le gouvernement
    et ses projets pour les riches. Vous avez tué un innocent ! Vous avez tué un innocent ! Il semblerait que la seule réponse
    du gouvernement à cette colère populaire soit d’accroître l’utilisation de la force. [RIO DE JANEIRO, BRÉSIL]
    On est allés dans un bidonville un peu excentré,
    la favela Rocinha, l’un des plus grands de Rio, pour voir ce qui a changé depuis la prise de contrôle
    de la police il y a 2 ans et demi. [TIM POOL, VICE NEWS]
    Pacifiée en novembre 2011, Rocinha
    est aujourd’hui sous surveillance policière 24h/24. Je m’appelle Weelf,
    je suis rappeur. [WEELF, HABITANT DE ROCINHA]
    Un pur produit de la favela Rocinha,
    la plus grande d’Amérique latine. On est à l’entrée de la 2e rue. Je vais vous faire visiter la paisible communauté dans laquelle on vit et vous montrer les conséquences du projet de l’État. Ils ont créé un vrai camp de concentration
    et nous maintiennent sous surveillance policière. J’ai parcouru une bonne partie
    de la favela Rocinha. On m’a expliqué ce qui se passe depuis la pacification
    et on a rencontré un jeune qui veut rester anonyme. Il fait partie d’un gang
    et il va nous raconter ce qui se passe. Comment toi et les gens des favelas
    voient la Coupe du monde ? Je pense que c’est bien
    qu’elle ait lieu au Brésil, mais ce Mondial est pour les riches,
    les pauvres ne pourront pas y aller. C’est pour ça que les gens
    ne sont pas très enthousiastes. On voit pas de fresques sur les murs, on voit plus de petits drapeaux comme avant. Le Brésil est un très beau pays
    pour faire des photos, mais les gens ont besoin
    de nourriture et de soins… L’autre jour, à la télé, j’ai vu
    une femme qui accouchait au milieu de la rue. Son bébé est venu au monde sur le sol. C’est inconcevable que de telles choses surviennent dans
    un pays assez important pour accueillir la Coupe du Monde. Au lieu d’être investi dans l’eau ou la santé,
    l’argent qui part dans les favelas ne sert qu’à installer
    des caméras pour contrôler la population et s’assurer du bon ordre. Ça fait quoi de voir fleurir les caméras ? Les gens ont des avis
    très différents là-dessus. Certains s’en foutent complètement, et d’autres le vivent comme
    une intrusion dans leur vie privée. Si l’UPP [Unité de Police Pacificatrice]
    utilisait de bonnes méthodes, ça pourrait servir à quelque chose. Mais si c’est pour qu’ils aient
    des preuves d’incivilité, comme ça m’est arrivé 2 fois… Si je veux des images pour prouver que la police a mal agi avec moi, ils ne les fourniront pas. Par exemple, celle-ci… Beaucoup de gens n’aiment pas être surveillés. Par exemple, celle-ci est cassée. Regarde. On s’est demandé qui était
    à l’origine de cette surveillance. Alors, avec Matias,
    on a essayé de les débusquer. [MATIAS MAXX, ACTIVISTE/RÉALISATEUR] On va au CICC,
    le Centre intégré de commande et de contrôle. En fait, c’est là qu’ils ont toutes les caméras,
    les écrans et tout. Et toutes les agences sont là.
    La police militaire, la police civile, la police fédérale. J’espère que ça va m’impressionner. Enfin, non, parce que
    si je suis impressionné, ça veut dire qu’ils nous surveillent vraiment.
    Ce serait la merde. Je comprends pas ce qu’elle raconte. Putain, mais tu veux que j’aille où ? Plein le cul de ce GPS. Parcourir Rio en voiture avec Matias,
    c’est toujours une aventure. Quand on se perd pas,
    on tombe en panne d’essence, ou les 2. Ah, putain. Plus d’essence ? Ouais. J’espère juste pas tomber en panne d’essence
    dans le parking de cette merde. La prochaine étape de notre parcours,
    le Centre de commande, est un bâtiment récent de surveillance construit
    pour la Coupe du monde. Il a coûté environ 50 millions de dollars
    au gouvernement, et c’est le cœur du système
    de surveillance de la ville. Très peu de Cariocas connaissent
    l’existence de ce bâtiment. C’est si nouveau que, pour accéder au parking,
    il faut grimper sur des trottoirs. Qu’est-ce qui se passe, Matias? Ils ont dit de passer sur le trottoir pour rentrer dans le parking. On n’est pas censés faire ça, mais
    c’est le gouvernement, donc… Putain, j’espère que
    la voiture n’a rien pris. Le Centre de commande fait partie
    d’un grand projet de surveillance des données. Il est dirigé par des officiers
    de la police militaire. Première étape,
    la salle du serveur. C’est le cœur du centre. Tous les serveurs et le matériel [COL. CARLOS ALFRADIQUE, POLICE MILITAIRE DE RIO]
    se trouvent ici. On a une capacité de stockage
    de 98 terabytes. À ce que je sais. Et on est en train d’ajouter
    130 terabytes de plus dans une autre pièce qui va être ouverte
    au gouvernement fédéral. Le centre a été construit pour
    la Coupe du monde et les J.O. de 2016, mais c’est aussi un nouvel outil du gouvernement pour
    surveiller les favelas les plus difficiles qui entourent le stade. Les caméras de l’UPP, elles sont aussi reliées ? Oui, elles diffusent toutes ici. Ici, on peut voir une caméra
    qui filme le Complexo do Alemao. On voit ce que voit chaque caméra. Si un touriste qui vient pour le Mondial appelle le numéro d’urgence, les données de sa requête
    seront transférées à la police ou aux représentants de chaque agence afin qu’on puisse faire
    le nécessaire pour l’aider. On a les images des caméras
    des hélicoptères. Lors des manifestations,
    par exemple, l’hélicoptère a une caméra au-dessus
    de la manifestation et on peut la suivre d’ici en temps réel. Combien de ces écrans vont diffuser
    les matchs du Brésil ? Ici ? Aucun. Même pas un ? J’y crois pas. Personne regardera le foot ? Faudra suivre à la radio. Le centre fait partie d’un projet visant
    à garder un œil sur les manifestations. Une large frange de la population
    s’est opposée à un nouveau projet de loi antiterroriste du gouvernement brésilien
    qui aurait rendu toute manifestation illégale. Cette loi prévoyait des peines de 15 à 30 ans
    pour incitation au désordre public. La Coupe du monde n’aura pas lieu ! Comme beaucoup de ses voisins latino-américains,
    le Brésil n’a pas de lois antiterroristes en raison d’abus terribles
    pendant la dictature militaire qui a pris fin il y a 20 ans. Les Brésiliens refusent de laisser
    les militaires reprendre le contrôle du pays. Désormais, de plus en plus de citoyens
    expriment leur colère dans la rue. Police terroriste ! Ils se sont mis à chanter,
    “Silence dans la favela ! Silence dans la favela !” [À SUIVRE DANS LA PARTIE 4] Il y a vraiment des gens riches qui disent,
    “les pauvres, fermez-la” ? – Ouais.
    – C’est dingue. La FIFA va tomber ! La FIFA va tomber ! La FIFA va tomber ! La FIFA va tomber !

    Articles

    Inside El Chapo’s Escape Tunnel

    October 7, 2019


    This is the tunnel that, Joaquín Guzmán came out of. We’re
    gonna go down and take a closer look. Let’s go check it out, guys. Yeah, this is maybe about 20 feet. 25 feet maybe. We’re standing in a mid of cornfield farm he in Almoloya de Juarez, This is the community where
    the Altiplano Maximum Security Federal Prison is
    located at all here to my left about a mile that way and incidentally, about the same
    distance this way is a Mexican army military base. This geographic location nonetheless, is where Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán apparently escaped from
    the Altiplano prison, from the end of a tunnel, located in this
    property right here behind me. At about 9 p.m., prison authorities inside Altiplano lost visual contact with Mr Guzmán, that is apparently the moment that he
    chose to escape through this tunnel located in the shower, and
    managed to get to this building right here. Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, the figure head of the Sinaloa cartel
    escaped for a second time. Deeply embarrassing the Mexican
    government, and straining its delicate relationship with US anti-drug officials. His first escape came in 2001, when Guzmán vanish from the Puente Grande prison in the state of Jalisco. By then Guzmán was already the most feared capo in the Sinaloa federation. A vast criminal organization that sends marijuana, cocaine, metaphatamine and heroin to the United States and around the world. Thirteen years later, Guzmán was caught again, at a hotel in
    Mazatlan, Sinaloa, with the help of US intelligence. United States immediately wanted El Chapo to be handed across the border
    to face drug trafficking charges in US federal court. But Mexican officials
    said they could handle Guzmán arrest and detention. They even said it would take 100 of years, before the drug lord would be extradited. On Saturday, July 11, word began
    spreading that Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, had escaped once more. The following morning, officials had almost unbelievable account to share with the public. The escape came just as President Enrique Peña Nieto and more than 400 guests, had embarked to Paris, France, to drum up foreign investment for Mexico. Under pressure, Mexico’s Interior
    Secretary returned to the country to head the
    investigations. Osorio Chong later release video footage of the escape from inside Chapo prison cell. It shows a man identified as Guzman, pacing, then putting on shoes, then ducking into a
    blind spot in the camera’s coverage, a waist-high shower stall. Chapo disappears at 8:52 p.m. Flavio Sosa is a social activist and leader from Mohaca, who was arrested on criminal charges
    that were later found to be false. As a political prisoner held in the Altiplano federal penitentiary, he was actually in the same unit at the
    prison from which Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, escaped. This jailbreaker according to has really exposed the degree of weakness, that Mexico’s justice and security
    apparatus has. The fact that Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman,
    could escape in such a stupendous and and cinematic way, raises a lot of questions about the
    usefulness on Mexico’s security administrations. This is the opening of the tunnel from which authorities say, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman managed to escape from the Altiplano Federal Prison on July 11th, This tunnel connects to the prison which is about a mile from here. Authorities told us that we would be entering the tunnel at our own risk, as it was not reinforced all the way through. They also would not allow us to film
    farther into the tunnel, in order to confirm that it connects
    with the shower stall one-mile away. What we hear first-hand look at the
    kind of tunnel that the Sinaloa Cartel has become
    famous for constructing in their efforts to
    traffic drugs across the border. So, I think it’s safe to assume that
    this is the sort of tunnels that they’ve used to cross drugs into the United States. This is sort of the lobby if you will to the
    tunnel. The dirt that we’re just standing on its right above, by these wooden planks, so clearly you
    can see that this is a well constructed facility. Essentially
    there is a generator here beside me, and the actual tunnel down to the… link the mile-long left tunnel is right here. This is the crane that who ever
    constructed this tunnel, used in order to take down and bring up heavy material, such as some of this
    machinery. And probably I assume some the dirt brought that was necessary to pull out here in order to get this tunnel built. We’re gonna go down about 30 feet. Let’s go check it out, guys! Yes, this is maybe about 20 feet, 25 feet maybe. This is very low. El Chapo Guzman is said to be between 5’5, or 5’6. It’s basically custom-built for his frame. Goverment said this motorcycle contraption like things is not actually a motorcycle, it’s some kinda vehicle that is fitted also with this little carts, that most probably use to move the dirt. This is adapted, it doesn’t have a front tyre, it has a small energy source here, it can move forward and backward. Looks like a very old mining type vehicle. This is actually not
    the first time that El Chapo has used tunnels to move billions of dollars worth of drugs or to evade authorities. Last year just before he was nabbed in Mazatlan, authorities came close to getting Guzman in the Sinaloa state
    capital of Culiacan. But Guzman used a network of tunnels connecting various properties to allude officials again. He’s also linked to dozens of sophisticated tunnels, used to smuggle drugs to the US. Particularly along the Tijuana-San Diego border corridor. But in the end, all the government’s
    evidence may not be enough to silence people who say: El Chapo spectacular escape, might be
    nothing more than one enormous charade. Officials permitted some access to the
    prison side of the tunnel but no independent observer has yet to
    run the entire length of it, to confirm the government story. So, I gotta admit it was finally a pretty exciting to see this
    tunnel upfront. I think what you will about El Chapo Guzman he has become a folk hero in a lot of people’s eyes, for
    precisely this kind of thing, for his ability to outwitt and
    outmatch the officials who were trying to bring him to justice. What is certain, is that the myth making, and sort of the legendary status that El Chapo Guzman has built for
    himself over the years will now only be expanded because at this. And maybe he has become the most famous drug lord in history since Pablo Escobar, in Colombia. So what’s gonna happen next? Will the authorities ever find El Chapo Guzman?