Venus Flytraps Need Protection From Poachers In North Carolina

Venus flytraps aren't generally thought of as plants worth stealing, and since they're seen as a novelty addition to a garden it doesn't seem like they'd be worth much money.

But the Venus Flytrap is an endangered species due to overcollection so there's real money to be made by poaching Flytraps, and therefore poaching has become a family tradition passed down for generations.

The Venus Flytrap is native to swampy areas in North and South Carolina, and the only place in the world where it grows wild is a 75 mile radius around Wilmington, where it has been protected by state legislation since 1956.

In fact, poaching has become such a big problem conservationists are afraid the Flytraps will be picked into extinction by poachers, who often sell the plants on the black market for about 25 cents each.

The poachers aren't above stealing this rare plant by the thousands from greenhouses and nurseries in the area too, and it's estimated there are only about 35,000 plants remaining in the wild.

Read Venus Flytraps Need Protection From Poachers In North Carolina here


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Five of the Top Stargazing Destinations in the World

Stargazing is good for the soul, but if you want to see the real glory of the cosmos above us, you need to get away from light pollution. And the clouds, of course. Just getting out of town is a good start, but if you want the view of a lifetime, you might think about planning your next vacation around the view of the stars at night. One place to see amazing stars capes is Chile.   

Chile may be known for being one of the driest places on earth, but it is also a destination known for great wine, great beaches and great skies. Described by many as an astronomers’ paradise, Chile is an ideal stargazing destination due to its lack of precipitation, clear skies and low-to-zero light pollution.  The near-perfect visibility gives stargazers crystal-clear views of Southern Hemisphere sky legends- including the Tarantula Nebula and the Fornax Cluster of galaxies. In fact, the northern part of the country experiences more than 200 cloudless nights each year!

When you’re there, don’t forget to visit renowned astronomical observation sites such as the Paranal Observatory- home to the Very Large Telescope (the largest in the world), and the Atacama Large Millimeter Array, the world’s most powerful radio telescope.

Read about other awesome stargazing locations at Money Inc.


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Guy Gets Revenge On His Cat For Waking Him Up In The Middle Of The Night

Cats act like they don't know the difference between day and night, but those little furry bastards definitely know the difference- and they know the middle of the night is the best time to get our attention.

So we get frustrated with them, wage a cold war and freeze them out until they do something cute and wind up right back on our good side.

But Nick T didn't pussyfoot around after his chatty tabby Italic had woken him up every night for a week straight- he meowed for vengeance.

(YouTube Link)

People were so concerned about Nick T's cat that he made a follow up video to show the world that his feline is fine. (barely NSFW due to language)

(YouTube Link)

So fine, in fact, that Nick T felt compelled to make another video to show how footloose and fancy free Italic is now that he knows the internet is on his side. They've unleashed a beast!

(YouTube Link)

-Via I Can Has Cheezburger?

Love cute animals? View more at Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly blog

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PJ McQuade's Pop Culture Christmas Cards for 2016

Artist PJ McQuade (previously at Neatorama) has unveiled his new pop culture Christmas cards! From Die Hard to Lord of the Rings, there's at least one that will tickle your fancy. More likely, you'll have trouble selecting among them.

These original artworks feature your favorite movie and TV characters in quirky holiday scenes. These are sure to stand out among all those generic cards displayed on the mantle. Continue reading to see more of them.

Continue reading

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Photos That Will Make You Think Twice About Using Public Transportation

(Image Link)

Public transit services help people get around town without a car, but everyone who regularly rides the bus, train or trolley agrees on one thing- riding on public transportation sucks.

(Image Link)

Between the constant delays, the filthy conditions, the crime, the stench, and the crowd of people you're forced to share the space with it's no wonder people would rather pay to take an Uber to work than ride the train.

(Image Link)

The train scene has gotten so bad that even superheroes are having a hard time surviving the trip, which isn't that surprising if you consider they have more experience fighting giant monsters than dirty naked dudes.

(Image Link)

That's why the granny in this shot bought herself a special subway assault rifle for the ride!

(Image Link)

See more WTF Photos Of That Will Make You Think Twice About Riding The Subway here


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Montreal Pileup

Winter is definitely here. A snowstorm in Montreal Monday left a super-slick surface on Côte du Beaver Hall, which is a steep street. Why hadn't they plowed or salted it yet? Because the snowplow is having trouble getting around, just like everyone else. This is what you call a "slippery slope."

(YouTube link)

I bet you were watching this video thinking of what could possibly be coming down the hill next. Digg has a second video that has live commentary in a colorful mixture of French and English.

Say it with me now: "A slippery slope on a super slick surface on a steep street."


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Fun Pictures of Kitties Loving Christmas

Cats and Christmas are a great combination -especially when it involves Christmas trees.

Naturally the trees make great climbing posts, but even when they aren't climbing the trees, kitties still seem to be pretty darn happy with the holidays.

Even fake, unclimbale trees are enough to put a smile on a feline's face. And if you're looking for something to put a smile on your face, look no further than this great Buzzfeed article filled will all kinds of cute kitties celebrating the holidays!

Love cute animals? View more at Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly blog

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Lil' Devil - Toon In For Some Fiery Fun!


Lil' Devil by poopsmoothie

Hot Stuff has always been seen as more of a comical character than the one who instills fear in the hearts of men, but after binge watching his favorite new superhero show he decided it was time to live up to his Little Devil nature. He figured if some blind guy could kick butt while pretending to be a devil he could kick twice as much butt and make his papa proud at the same time. So Hot Stuff headed to Harveyville and started looking for a scrap, but all he could find were cute cartoon characters with big heads and even bigger hearts! Man, no wonder there's never any crime in Harveyville....

Add some superheroic heat to your geeky wardrobe with this Lil' Devil t-shirt by Poopsmoothie, it's an exciting design that will blow your fellow fans' minds!

Visit Poopsmoothie's Facebook fan page, official website and Twitter, then head on over to his NeatoShop for more super cool designs:

My Lil' Ponysher Hockey Royalty Go! Penguin GO! Scrappin Bats

View more designs by poopsmoothie | More Funny T-shirts | New T-Shirts

Are you a professional illustrator or T-shirt designer? Let's chat! Sell your designs on the NeatoShop and get featured in front of tons of potential new fans on Neatorama!


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Smells in the Workplace

The following is an article from The Annals of Improbable Research, now in all-pdf form. Get a subscription now for only $25 a year!

(Image credit: Drew Fairweather at Toothpaste for Dinner)

Research about business and business-like odors
compiled by Grover Dunn, Improbable Research staff

Corporeal Porosity in Office Work
“Smell Organization: Bodies and Corporeal Porosity in Office Work,” Kathleen Riach and Samantha Warren, Human Relations, epub October 9, 2014. The authors, at Monash University, Australia, and the University of Essex, UK, explain:

Continue reading

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World's Oldest Bell Foundry to Close

The Whitechapel Bell Foundry in London made Big Ben, the Liberty Bell, and the Bells of St. Mary's. It has sent bells all over the world since the business opened in 1570. The foundry has been at the same Whitechapel location since 1783. But now owners Alan and Kathryn Hughes have announced that they will no longer take new orders, and the firm will close down next May.

It has been several centuries since the boom years of bell making, yet the foundry has found ways of adapting to modern times by making traditional doorbells, popular among people restoring Victorian properties.

The Downton effect has seen a third of its business exported overseas.

However, quality craftsmanship takes time. The average time from enquiry to order is 11 years, and the longest commission in the foundry’s history took 100 years to produce.

Order to installation takes another year, and a major project could cost as much as £250,000 to produce.

It's still possible that someone else will purchase the equipment and keep producing bells at another location. Read more about the oldest bell foundry in the world at the Telegraph. -Thanks, John Farrier!

(Image credit: ceridwen)


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English for Beginners

Get your hankies out, this is a sweet story about a Polish man learning to speak English. It's two steps forward and one step back, which gives us some funny moments, but he is determined to communicate in English. Contains a very little NSFW language.

(YouTube link)

This is an ad for Allegro. It took some digging to find out what they sell. It's a buying site, sort of a Polish eBay. -via reddit


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Confronting Freedom of Religion at the Local Level

The First Amendment to the Constitution begins: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…" and goes on about freedom of speech, the press, and assembly. How does that translate to state and smaller governments? The Kenai Peninsula Borough is an area, like a county, south of Anchorage, Alaska. the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly is its governing body. In June, one member of the Assembly proposed a new rule that would do away with a prayer before opening Assembly meetings, but it wasn't passed due to lack of interest. So they opened up the invocation to anyone who wanted to give it on a first-come, first-served basis. In August, Satanic Temple member Iris Fontana opened the meeting with a prayer that invoked Satan. At another meeting, an atheist spoke for the invocation. 

In October, the Assembly changed the process of selecting who gives the invocation.

As the new resolution spells out, those eligible to recite an invocation include religious associations "with an established presence in the Kenai Peninsula Borough that regularly meet for the primary purpose of sharing a religious perspective, or chaplains who may serve one or more of the fire departments, law enforcement agencies, hospitals, or other similar organizations in the borough."

In November, the rules were changed again to re-open the invocation to anyone who wanted to give it. That happened after they started thinking about possible lawsuits.

An ordinance that would have appropriated $75,000 in borough money to fight future court battles over the religious rule was withdrawn as a result of the Assembly approving the amendment. Decker said in the past that while the ACLU hopes not to sue, it wouldn't rule it out, "if that's what upholding the Constitution takes."

However, the reversion to the open rules has not yet taken effect, so the story is not over. The simplest thing would be to do away completely with an invocation before Assembly meetings. There's nothing wrong with a good "I call this meeting to order." -via a comment at Metafilter


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Some Of The Most Distracting Extras In Movie History

Movie extras mill about in the background of our favorite TV shows and movies, paid to act like regular folks doing regular stuff while the main actors deliver their performances.

But hiring regular folks to be movie extras can pose a problem if they're not coached on the concept of blending in, like the crazy "businessman" who tries to steal the spotlight in this clip from Ghostbusters.

(YouTube Link)

It can be just as hard to make a kid understand how their fidgeting, or in the case of North By Northwest preemptive ear plugging, may detract from a scene's sense of drama when they're visible behind the actors.

(YouTube Link)

Child extras can also get hurt if the actors aren't careful, which the "Candy Man" almost learned the hard way in this scene from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

Watch as the blonde girl in the bottom right corner of the screen narrowly dodges the counter, and a broken jaw, like a little ninja:

(YouTube Link)

See 12 of the Most Distracting Extras in Movie History here


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How To Make Real Eggnog

I gave one of my daughters her first taste of eggnog (store-bought) when she was maybe seven years old. She sipped it and said, "Oh Mom, that's disgusting. Why did you give me that?" I thought, "sez the kid who eats sardines in mustard sauce." That's eggnog for you; people either love it or hate it. Eggnog is a real American drink, from our colonial history when milk, eggs, and rum were  plentiful here compared to Europe. The real pull was that the original drink had more alcohol than milk or cream, which conveniently preserved the milk and eggs. We've refined our recipes considerably since then, and egg nog connoisseurs agree that homemade is better than store-bought. Uproxx has three different recipes for your holiday eggnog, including George Washington's popular recipe that produced the drink by the gallon.

We dish up more neat food posts at the Neatolicious blog

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Literal Bohemian Rhapsody

Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" has been turned into a hardboiled crime noir film. You already know the plot. You probably already know the entire script. But you'll want to watch anyway.  

(YouTube link)

This movie has no soundtrack because there's one playing in your head already. It ends before the songs does, but few viewers seem to have realized that so far.  -via Digg


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A Collection Of Silly Doctor Who Comics To Make Your Spirits Bright

(Via Michielynn)

For most Whovians the holiday season has been associated with Doctor Who ever since they watched their first Christmas special, and now we have a present from The Doctor to look forward to at the end of every year.

(Via polvoice)

But if you're tired of waiting for The Doctor to come back on the airwaves, or you're looking for a sure-fire way to keep your sci-fi lovin' spirits bright during the holidays, then look no further!

(Via big-ending)

These Doctor Who comics are warm and witty, strange and silly and full of references only fans of the show will know, and they won't bust your holiday budget because webcomics are free! Allons-Y!

(Via swing-21)

Read 10 Silly Doctor Who Comics To Warm Your Heart here

http://michielynn.deviantart.com/art/Doctor-Who-Companion-269483392

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13 Interesting Facts About The Ocean’s 11 Films

Ocean's 11 was a 1960 Rat Pack film that was popular, but not as big as the 2001 remake, which spawned two sequels with another related movie now in development. Whether you're already a fan or plan to watch them all someday, you'll want to check out some trivia about those three films.    

The cast had to accept a lower salary for the first movie in 2001.

As there were so many A-list stars featured in the first film, they all had to accept a lower pay check if they wanted to be involved. They all agreed eventually as they all wanted to be on the film together.

Brad Pitt ate 40 shrimp while filming for the scene where Rusty eats a shrimp cocktail.

It was actually Brad Pitt’s idea that his character should be eating all the time to show that the Ocean squad were pushed for time, meaning they had to grab food whenever they could.

Read the rest of the trivia list about Ocean's 11 and its sequels at Unreality.


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A Map Featuring Every Country's Tourism Slogan

Catchy slogans are the advertising world's bread and butter, and they're often able to sell a campaign to a client simply based on the clever catchphrase or slogan they create for the ads. But do slogans really work?

Maybe when you're walking down a store aisle trying to choose between two brands, but it's safe to say nobody's packing their bags and taking a trip somewhere based on the destination's tourism slogan.

And yet every country thinks it needs a tourism slogan nowadays, because people clearly won't visit The Bahamas until they hear "Life is grand" there, and people will only go to New Zealand if they know it's "100% pure"

British travel site FamilyBreakFinder put together this massive world map featuring every country's tourism slogan, in case you're curious about how countries advertise themselves to tourists:

From the straightforward (‘Travel in Slovakia – good idea’) to the dramatic (‘Colombia is magical realism’) these slogans are an insight into the ways tourism departments in countries across the world sell their countries to visitors. There are 9 exclamations used (Lithuania’s previous slogan used three with ‘See it! Feel it! Love it!’ but is now ‘Real is beautiful’) and the most popular word used is ‘Beautiful’ which appears six times.

See the full sized map here

-Via Laughing Squid


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The Slaughtered Lamb - The Safest Place To Be During A Full Moon


The Slaughtered Lamb by Nemons

If you should pay London a visit and decide to go backpacking outside the city you'd best be back in the safety and comfort of your hotel room before dark- or you may find yourself on the dinner menu. For the people who gather each night at The Slaughtered Lamb know a secret they're not keen on sharing with tourists, a deadly secret that has resulted in the death and dismemberment of many who've dared travel in the woods after dark. Some call it a werewolf, others see it as a malevolent spirit meant to make man pay for their offenses against nature, but the last American who paid The Slaughtered Lamb a visit knows what's out there, and he's no longer in any shape to discuss the incident...

Advertise your favorite fictional rural pub with this The Slaughtered Lamb t-shirt by Nemons, it's a bloody good way to show love for your favorite horror movie!

Visit Nemons's Facebook fan page and Twitter, then head on over to his NeatoShop for more terrifyingly cool designs:

Unseen University - Fighting Wizards Monsters Fink II Pan's Pale Ale The Lot

View more designs by Nemons | More Movie T-shirts | New T-Shirts

Are you a professional illustrator or T-shirt designer? Let's chat! Sell your designs on the NeatoShop and get featured in front of tons of potential new fans on Neatorama!


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The Girl and the Cloud

Bear with me here. I saw the new video at the Presurfer, and thought it was neat. But the next video that YouTube loaded for me was from 2014, and I realized that the new video is a sequel to this one, so watch the first video first.

(YouTube link)

Two years later, we get an update to the story, this time in animation.

(YouTube link)

Three Ireland commissioned both videos, and there's a children's book that tells the same story. Proceeds from the sale of the book go to Barnardos, a children's charity in Ireland. I don't see a way to order it online, however. -via the Presurfer


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Fun Facts About Robin Hood: Men in Tights

Can you believe that Robin Hood: Men in Tights is over twenty years old? If you agree that this is one of, if not the absolute, best Robin Hood movies ever created, you won't want to miss this collection of great trivia about the film. For example, did you know that Mel Brooks had already worked on a Robin Hood tv series back in the seventies? Or that Sean Connery was originally going to be King Richard and was going to play him in drag, but that he wanted too much money for the role?

Celebrate those tight -tight tights over at Mental Floss


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Can You Solve the Airplane Riddle?

Professor Fukanō is going to circumnavigate the globe in his airplane, but his tank doesn't hold enough fuel for the entire trip. He has support planes of the exact same model which can refuel him in the air, but none of the planes can land anywhere except the starting point airport. How can he get around the world without crashing from lack of fuel? There's some math involved. If you want to try this on your own, keep in mind that only Professor Fukanō's plane needs to go all the way around. Good luck.

(YouTube link)

I didn't even attempt to figure this out on my own, but the answer is rather simple when you start thinking in the right direction. It's that initial thinking in the right direction that's so daunting. Students of British military history have an edge, in that this kind of thing has been done before. Operation Black Buck during the 1982 Falklands War saw RAF bombers fly 12,600 kilometers, and had to refuel from support vehicles. The refueling scheme had to be explained in a diagram.  -via Viral Viral Videos


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Renovating A Nearly 200-Year-Old Home In Mississippi

There are very few homes left in America that are over 150 years old, so any time someone buys a really old home they face many decisions about renovation.

Is the house going to be able to be brought up to code? Could the home be considered historic and therefore worthy of preserving at all costs? Or is the whole thing just waiting to be torn down so the lot can be used for a new build?

These were the dilemmas faced by Maria and Mac Thomas when they bought a house in Fayette, Mississippi that was built in 1825, an historic plantation home known as Laurietta.

From the outside the house looked like a total tear down, but inside they found Laurietta was a solid structure, so they decided to go with a gut renovation instead of destruction.

Three years and lots of hard work later they were able to transform that dilapidated old house into a thing of beauty once again.

See Renovating A Historic Home In Mississippi here


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Microwave Memories

The following article is from the new book Uncle John’s Uncanny Bathroom Reader.

Do you remember when microwave ovens became standard fixtures in American homes of the 1970s? If you do, you may also recall how cookbooks of the era were filled with recipes for dishes that really had no business being cooked in a microwave. Return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear…

MAJOR APPLIANCE

Microwave oven technology has been around since 1947, but it took 20 years for manufacturers to figure out how to make microwaves small enough and cheap enough for the home kitchen. The earliest models, sold to restaurants and commercial kitchens, cost $5,000 ($52,000 in today’s dollars), weighed more than 700 pounds, and were as big as refrigerators. Many of the restaurants that bought microwaves used them to reheat already-cooked dishes that had gone cold.

By the mid-1960s, microwaves were small enough to sit on a kitchen counter and cost around $500 ($3,400 today). That was still a lot of money (a 1967 Ford Mustang cost just $2,400), and to entice consumers into buying them, manufacturers and appliance dealers promoted them with a lot of hype. They claimed that microwaves could do anything that conventional ovens could do, in only a fraction of the time, and with much greater convenience. An entire industry of microwave-related products—including cookbooks, cookware, and specially formulated mixes for pies, cakes, casseroles, and other foods sprung up to feed the public’s fascination with these new devices.

Continue reading

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Big Fluffy Clyde

(YouTube link)

This is Clyde, a fluffy blue point Himalayan cat. He's super friendly and super cuddly, as he canoodles with his boy. See more of Clyde at Instagram.  -via Tastefully Offensive

Love cute animals? View more at Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly blog

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My Life as a Background Ravenclaw

This comic from Emily McGovern at Emily's Cartoons sent me down an internet wormhole, but I learned a few things. Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is indeed in Scotland. And indeed, it makes no sense that students from Scotland would have to travel to London to catch a train to school. But as the wiki states, "The precise location of the school could never be uncovered because it was rendered Unplottable." Maybe the roundabout route for Scottish students is a way of keeping the location a secret, you think? That may be it. The Hogwarts Express train was inaugurated in the 1850s as a way to transport students to the school without drawing the attention of Muggles.

Could a parent in Scotland just drive their student to Hogwarts? No. According to the wiki, "the Ministry decreed that students would arrive to school on the train or not attend at all." Just like Muggle schools, there are rules that don't make sense. But a dedicated train doesn't conceal the fact that on September first, a large contingent of schoolchildren arrive at Hogsmeade Station in Scotland and are whisked away to the school. Apparently, the folks in Hogsmeade do not travel all that much. Check out McGovern's Tumblr site, where you'll find a substantial series called My Life as a Background Slytherin. -via Geeks Are Sexy


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That Mate Who's Too Into His Beer

Do you know anyone who's really into beer? I mean, not just to drink it, but into the craft beer thing, critiquing and comparing, and telling everyone around about it? A beer snob, if you will.

(YouTube link)

Yeah, that can be pretty darn annoying. Even stranger is that this video by Third Leg Studios is an ad targeted to exactly those people. That thing he used is for sale.  -via reddit


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Vintage Photos From The Heyday Of Beat Culture In New York

When people hear the word "Beatnik" they immediately think about berets, striped shirts, bongos, bad poetry and goatees, and the Beatnik subculture is still most commonly associated with the 1960s.

But the heyday for Beats like Jack Kerouac, Gregory Corso and Alan Ginsberg was actually the late 1940s through the 50s, because that's when they were busy inspiring a literary movement and subculture at the same time.

The original Beats who inspired the trendy Beatniks in the 60s could be seen hanging out in jazz clubs and coffee shops around Greenwich Village, New York, where they would read poems, dig the tunes or just get dixie fried.

So if you wanted to meet those real gone cats collectively known as the Beat Generation you had to hang at places like the Gaslight Cafe or the Seven Arts Cafe, where every night was a gas and the java flowed all night long.

See 35 Photographs That Capture The Beatniks' Heyday In New York City here


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Constitutional Plot Twists Hollywood Should Consider

Americans, and indeed the Supreme Court, have been arguing for two hundred years about the Founding Fathers' original intent when interpreting the U.S. Constitution. The truth is that the language of the Constitution is rather vague in some areas, and not easy to apply to modern scenarios that the writers never dreamed of, such as the use of the internet. They also probably never envisioned that the U.S. would grow to over 300 million people. The weird ways of the Constitution have already given us some "what ifs" in our TV shows, like Scandal, Veep, Designated Survivor, and House of Cards. But there are other scenarios and crises to explore. Someone should write a movie.

Suggested title: Reprisal

Suggested plot: After the military finds itself stymied while fighting a group of terrorists in international waters, Congress decides to authorize a privateer—essentially a government-approved pirate who can go after the bad guys for his own gain.

Dream casting: Nicolas Cage

The constitutional background: Article I, Section 8, Clause 11. The Constitution allows Congress to “grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal,” which are basically permission slips for private boats to fight pirates on behalf of the United States.

What scholars think: “I could imagine a show about some new pirate threat somewhere and the government deciding to fight them with these private boats, which of course would have charismatic and daredevil captains,” said Jay Wexler, a constitutional law scholar at Boston University.

Spoiler alert: Letters of Marque were more important before the U.S. had a standing navy. Then-Rep. Ron Paul floated the idea in 2009 when Somali pirates were a problem, but even if Congress went along it would probably decide pretty quickly to go back to using the military.

There are six other potential movies, each dealing with a Constitutional loophole laid out at TIME. -Thanks, John Farrier!


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The Ranger Club - Don't You Forget About Me


The Ranger Club by Prime Premne

They were five strangers who found themselves all dressed up with no place to go, stuck in Power Ranger school detention until Principal Zedd said they were free to go. Everything they'd fought for in their young lives had led up to this point, and even though they went from forming the Megazord to being mega-bored they learned a lot about each other that day in detention, which made them grow stronger as a group. Turns out it was a mighty good idea to use their morphin' abilities to cause mischief after all, and they would look back on that day over breakfast and smile, especially when they thought about the time the Pink Ranger knocked Principal Zedd out with a mega-powered fart!

Get suited up for adventure with this The Ranger Club t-shirt by Prime Premne, it's a great way to show the world you've been a member of the Mighty Morphin' fan club since back in the day!

Visit Prime Premne's Facebook fan page and Twitter, then head on over to his NeatoShop for more delightfully geeky designs:

The Little Grandpa Green Buns and Ham Nazgul Days Thieves Blasting Off Paint

View more designs by Prime Premne | More Funny T-shirts | New T-Shirts

Are you a professional illustrator or T-shirt designer? Let's chat! Sell your designs on the NeatoShop and get featured in front of tons of potential new fans on Neatorama!


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