About OyiaBrown

Please send me, as a comment to this page, any old material you have for inclusion in The Daily Joke Alert - to help enable us all to have our fancy tickled regularly! Never mind the state it's in as I tidy everything up prior to publication. Don't let good material go to waste - and so much does. In the interests of the environment we should always try to re-cycle everything, especially jokes. You know that makes sense! You may find some historical stuff here, but this does not really matter as humor is fairly timeless.

An Interview with Mitchell S. Jackson

Mitchell S. Jackson is a writer from Portland, Oregon who now lives in Brooklyn, New York. He is the author of the acclaimed autobiographical novel The Residue Years, which Roxane Gay, writing for The New York Times, called “powerful” and “affecting,” praising its “warmth and wit” and remarking that “Jackson’s prose has a spoken-word cadence, the language flying off the page with percussive energy.” His many awards and honors include the Whiting Award and The Ernest Gaines Award for Literary Excellence, as well as fellowships from Urban Artist Initiative and The Center for Fiction. Additionally, he has been a finalist for the PEN / Hemingway Award for debut fiction, the Hurston / Wright Legacy Award for best fiction by a writer of African descent, and the Center for Fiction’s Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize. He teaches at New York University and Columbia University. Earlier this year, he released a documentary about his life and his writing, also called The Residue Years, on Literary Hub

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Animal rescue operation complete as ‘world’s worst zoo’ closes in Gaza

The animals were rescued by the Vienna-based organization Four Paws, and include Laziz, believed to be the last tiger in Gaza, as well as an emu, a pelican, two tortoises, two other birds, a deer, five monkeys and two porcupines.

They represent the last survivors of a zoo described as “the world’s worst,” many of whose “inhabitants” were crudely taxidermied carcasses on display alongside their living neighbors. The mummified animals once on display included Laziz’s mate.

Life for the survivors was difficult: little food, cramped cages and fallout from frequent strife between Israel and Hamas. Shortly before the Four Paws mission team arrived in Gaza on Sunday, a rocket was fired from the territory into Sderot and the Israel Defense Forces answered with 50 airstrikes.

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Brexit Disrupts Nonchalant European Union Meddling

The June 23 vote by the United Kingdom electorate to leave the European Union should be seen in the context of two other recent European events. Three days earlier, on June 20, the EU’s Foreign Ministers Council decided to solve the Palestinian problem by Christmas with its endorsement of French President François Hollande’s “peace initiative.” Three days after the vote, on June 26, the second election in Spain within a few months failed once again to produce a viable majority for any government. Worse still, the steadily rising popularity of nationalist parties in France, Germany, Austria and the Netherlands suggests that political paralysis in other EU countries is on the way.

In short, the ambitions of the ruling political cliques of Europe to solve the problems of the world are being undermined by their own neglected electorates, which are increasingly furious at the failure of those cliques to solve the problems of Europe itself. Four years ago, we wrote about Europe’s Imminent Revolution. Two years ago, about the attempt and failure of those cliques to turn the EU into a make-believe copy of the United States. Today, that revolution is creeping ahead month by month.

Before threatening Israel’s security and local supremacy, the EU foreign ministers could have recalled the results of their previous nonchalant meddling in the area. We were all rightly horrified by the threat of Muammar Gaddafi to hunt down his enemies “street by street, house by house,” as he began by shooting hundreds in his capital, in February 2011. Hollande’s predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy, rallied European leaders — first and foremost the UK’s David Cameron — to do something about it. President Obama turned up to give a speech, something that he is good at. More importantly, Obama supplied warplanes from the NATO base in Naples. The idea was to enable victory for the Libyan rebel forces by paralyzing Gaddafi’s own air force and bombing his land forces.

Victory was achieved. But the rebels were united only in their hatred of Gaddafi. So Libya has descended into a chaos that could have been prevented only by a massive long-term presence of European land forces, which Europe — after repeated cuts in army strength — does not have. Now it is the local franchise of the Islamic State, among others, that is hunting down enemies house by house.

The June 23 vote by the United Kingdom electorate to leave the European Union should be seen in the context of two other recent European events. Three days earlier, on June 20, the EU’s Foreign Ministers Council decided to solve the Palestinian problem by Christmas with its endorsement of French President François Hollande’s “peace initiative.” Three days after the vote, on June 26, the second election in Spain within a few months failed once again to produce a viable majority for any government. Worse still, the steadily rising popularity of nationalist parties in France, Germany, Austria and the Netherlands suggests that political paralysis in other EU countries is on the way.

In short, the ambitions of the ruling political cliques of Europe to solve the problems of the world are being undermined by their own neglected electorates, which are increasingly furious at the failure of those cliques to solve the problems of Europe itself. Four years ago, we wrote about Europe’s Imminent Revolution. Two years ago, about the attempt and failure of those cliques to turn the EU into a make-believe copy of the United States. Today, that revolution is creeping ahead month by month.

Before threatening Israel’s security and local supremacy, the EU foreign ministers could have recalled the results of their previous nonchalant meddling in the area. We were all rightly horrified by the threat of Muammar Gaddafi to hunt down his enemies “street by street, house by house,” as he began by shooting hundreds in his capital, in February 2011. Hollande’s predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy, rallied European leaders — first and foremost the UK’s David Cameron — to do something about it. President Obama turned up to give a speech, something that he is good at. More importantly, Obama supplied warplanes from the NATO base in Naples. The idea was to enable victory for the Libyan rebel forces by paralyzing Gaddafi’s own air force and bombing his land forces.

Victory was achieved. But the rebels were united only in their hatred of Gaddafi. So Libya has descended into a chaos that could have been prevented only by a massive long-term presence of European land forces, which Europe — after repeated cuts in army strength — does not have. Now it is the local franchise of the Islamic State, among others, that is hunting down enemies house by house.

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Meet the worst ants in the world

I battled the ants for about a year before I started noticing interesting patterns in their behavior.

My military tactics against the invaders were those of a typical San Francisco eco-nerd. I used non-toxic spray made with orange peels to repel them (it actually works pretty well) and placed low-toxin poison sugar bait traps close to cracks they used to enter the house. But these tiny, brown insects seemed unstoppable. They would swarm onto their targets seemingly out of nowhere. I’d put out my cats’ food and come back in 45 minutes to find a thick, wriggling line of ants moving between a crack in the wall and their kibble target. If I blocked their trail with poison, they’d pour out of a different crack next to the kitchen counter. Or at the base of the stairs. Or in my bathroom.

By necessity, I spent a lot of time watching these tireless insects overcoming every obstacle. And during all that reconnaissance, I started to see things that made me wonder who these ants really were.

As my neighbors watered the plants in our backyard, I watched ants boiling out of cracks in the brick patio, racing to escape the onrushing tides. Looking more closely, I discovered they were carrying tiny white bundles in their mandibles. I recognized eggs and larvae. The ants were rescuing their brood from a flood apocalypse caused by oblivious humans.

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Anti-Israel Double Standards Enable Assad’s Brutality

Syria’s civil war claimed 470,000 lives since it started in March 2011, the Syrian Centre for Policy Research announced in February. That’s an average of about 262 deaths per day and 7,860 per month. The carnage has continued unabated, so, applying the same death rate nearly 200 days after the February estimate, the death toll is over 520,000.

Such numbers are staggering, even by Middle East standards. However, the violence has become so routine that it only occasionally captures global attention, usually when a particularly poignant moment of human suffering is documented. The most recent example is Omran Daqneesh, a 5-year old Syrian boy who was filmed shell-shocked, bloody, and covered in dust after the airstrike bombing of his Aleppo apartment block.

The tragic image of Omran caused outrage around the world, as did the image of Aylan Kurdi, the drowned Syrian boy whose body washed up last September on a beach in Turkey. Yet Omran’s plight demonstrates that, nearly a year after the last child victim of Syrian horrors captured global sympathy, nothing has changed.

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