1205 am 'Get This' news
12/05/07 Get This
- Portlanders have been enjoying their own private State of Emergency. While the rest of the State slowly sinks beneath the rising tide, here in the Emerald City, we have been saturated with nonstop media coverage of what is happening to rural communities. Good thing we’re running out of timber to clear-cut: It’s a primary reason why so much mountain came to small-town Oregon. Talk about karma…
- Flood Simple: Shipping got banjaxed by the storms. (This fact alone ought too make industrialists the world over rethink the global warming cost/benefit analysis. Yes, the Northwest Passage could open up: No, global warmers won’t be able to cash in year-round because of freakish weather patterns and superstorms like the one we just emerged from.)
- Ham On Wry: In the midst of the watery chaos, ham radio operators were the clear heroes and heroines. In many places, the hams were the only means of communication connecting people to rescue operations and disaster services – in fact, connecting said services with one another in many cases.
- A New York-based energy developer is set to cash in on the Gorge’s notorious winds. (Be a responsible energy consumer: Buy a bird a crash helmet. Buy yourself one as well!)
- Natural Resources Canada churned out a report on Climate Change but did not release it, to the confusion and consternation of the report’s authors. Their findings have already been found to a certain extent, by many of us who do not agree that the melting of the Arctic ice cap is going to be a Good Thing. (That’s like claiming that getting smacked by a gigantic meteor would be just grand because think of all the minerals in the goddamn thing…). Anyway….The report brings us the vaguely alarming news that the melting ice is going to cause global conflict over energy resources (Translation: The US is going to attack and invade Canada) as well as all the usual, increasingly familiar environmental horrors we currently find ourselves absorbing.
- The new Intelligence Estimate report thoroughly ‘outed’ the Cheney Road to War and has certainly served to undermine the case for Permanent War (Which, it turns out, is a poisonous “truth” that NPR has chosen to swallow. I heard the term used just last week.). But wait! There’s more! You also will receive: An isolated and deluded president still insisting that the sky is red and if it isn’t, he’ll make sure that it soon will be. And you also get a petulant Israel ready to go it alone with the tacit backing of the State Department. As the saying goes, ‘Peace is War!’
- But probably not until February. Bush is going to visit Israel in January. Either A, There will be an “incident.” Maybe, maybe not a “wall”, but definitely plenty of wailing. or B. Israeli will hit Syria/Iran the moment Air Force One touches down in the US.
- Money Makes The World Go Down: Bush still insists on limitless money for limitless war – this, despite the fact that he has now all the charisma of an angry child shunned by others for being stupid, brutish and cruel and mendacious…And usually children are drawn to those traits…(This, by the way, is being sold as USDA grade A Democratic backbone.)
- The House and the Senate are trying to reconcile two different versions of a bill to tighten Freedom of Information Act laws (Oh, hell…Go ahead and pass both versions! It won’t be the first time during the Bush administration…)
- Killer Bonus: That’s right. American defense “contractors” are going to get bonuses on the 20th – just in time for Christmas! (A nice new Bushmaster assault rifle with scope would look good under that artificial tree…And – my personal favorite - stocking-stuffer, brass knuckles!)
- Jose Padilla is going to have to sit in prison for yet another month (Although by this time he probably has little or no concept of time at all – or space for that matter…) awaiting sentencing because the judge had a “personal tragedy” (A family member died). I don’t know about you but, “intentionally inflicted psychological pain and suffering” also count as a “personal tragedy” as does the prospect of life in jail. The government may have actually done Padilla a merciful favor by driving him mad…
- More News That Really Isn’t: More black people go to prison for drug crimes than white people.
- Predator and Pray: There’s a Christian evangelical “rehabilitation” (Anyone see ‘Idiocracy’? “Don’t I get a car?”) called InnerChange that has violated every aspect of separation of Church and State, violated prisoners’ rights and pissed-off the reverend Barry Lynn of Americans United. InnerChange staff members at Newton Correctional Facility in Iowa harangued non-evangelical prisoners and prevented them from taking classes required for parole. That’s just for starters. All at tax-payer expense. It was a crime, but it’s over, thanks to Americans United. Thank you, Reverend Lynn!
- Public school districts in two Florida counties refused to let counter-recruiters on campus …Because? Because the anti-enlistment activists didn’t have any “options” for high school graduates. (See, this is what can happen when laws and morals get conflated: Lying is legal!)
- While the nation was getting an earful of Bush’s Deep Thoughts on the Middle East, and local citizens were getting some Deep Water in the Northwest, the Senate backed the US-Peru Free Trade Agreement. See what happens when you turn your back on them, even for a moment?
- Israel’s army has completed plans for a massive offensive in the Gaza Strip. All it needs now is “government” approval. Israel didn’t say which “government”, however…
- France has organized a donors conference to raise funds for Palestinians. (Prediction: By Friday, the Bush administration will have declared France a ‘terrorist organization.’)
- Al Arabiya aired a video of the Forgotten Five this week. These are the five British citizens who have been held since May (While the rest of the world did a little shopping, watched some TV and washed its hair…). The video calls for British forces to withdraw from the country or one of the hostages would be killed. This is the first video of the five men and they are currently the only British hostages being held in Iraq.
- That Was Then And This Is Now Dept: In Afghanistan, another suicide attacker hit a NATO convoy. The Taliban billed it as a ‘Welcome Robert Gates’ event. (Thing is, these suicide bombings are utterly out of character for Afghanistan. Until US and NATO troops entered the blood-socked scene, this simply “wasn’t done.”)
- In South Africa, tens of thousands of miners are on strike. The smart money says they will stay out for as long as it takes. South Africa can’t do without the mineral resources and from the miners’ point of view, nothing could possibly be worse than working in a South African mine. (What’s Management going do here, go in and do the job themselves?)
- Rockets Red Glare: International observers observed that Russia’s recent election was about as credible as Dick Cheney joining the Radio city Rockettes. (‘Dick with the Rockettes’ could be the tagline.)
- Not-So-Perfect Harmony: And a Canadian judge says that refugees are not safe in the United States – if they could get in, of course. In the post 9/11 international love fest when every country in the world wanted to be America’s New Best Friend, Canada and the US signed a ‘Harmonization Agreement’. The agreement provides that a refugee can ask for refuge in either Canada or America – now, it turns out, America is off the table as an option. (Guantanamo, however, is still open for business so Come On Down!)