Monday, March 31, 2008

In the News: Mar-31

Truce Calms Iraq, Weakens Prime Minister - 31 Mar 2008 at 4:00pm - BAGHDAD (AP) -- Rockets fell on the Green Zone and random machine gun fire rang out Monday in the southern city of Basra as Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr sought to rein in his gunmen after a week of battles that claimed about 400 lives.

Bush prods Congress before Europe trip - 31 Mar 2008 at 8:28am - WASHINGTON -- On his way out of the country, President Bush stopped long enough Monday to tell Congress what to do what while he was away: pass legislation he wants on matters of trade, housing and terrorist surveillance.
He's right: the Senate really should get off their lazy butts and pass the House version of the FISA bill.

Thought for the day:
Freedom of the press is limited to those who own one. -A. J. Liebling (1904 - 1963)

Friday, March 28, 2008

In the News: Mar-29

New Central Command chief an Army man - 28 Mar 2008 at 1:57pm - MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- One of the Army's most Iraq-savvy generals took charge Friday of arguably the most important command in the U.S. military, the one with responsibility for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In a ceremony attended by top Pentagon officials, Lt. Gen. Martin Dempsey assumed temporary command of U.S. Central Command, replacing Navy Adm. William J. Fallon, who relinquished his post after just one year in the assignment. President Bush has not yet nominated a permanent replacement.

Case dropped against Haditha defendant - 28 Mar 2008 at 1:40pm - CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. -- The Marine Corps is dropping all charges against a lance corporal who was accused of involuntary manslaughter in a squad's killing of 24 Iraqis in Haditha in 2005.

U.S. forces drawn deeper into Iraq crackdown - 28 Mar 2008 at 9:32am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - U.S. forces were drawn deeper into Iraq's four day-old crackdown on Shi'ite militants on Friday, launching air strikes in Basra for the first time and battling militants in Baghdad.

Shiite fighters in Iraq bombed as PM offers cash for guns - 28 Mar 2008 at 2:53pm - BASRA (AFP) - US-led coalition jets bombed Shiite militia positions in the southern city of Basra as prime minister Nuri al-Maliki on Friday offered cash to local residents to give up their arms.

Thought for the day:
An economist is an expert who will know tomorrow why the things he predicted yesterday didn't happen today. -Laurence J. Peter (1919 - 1988)

Thursday, March 27, 2008

In the News: Mar-27

US diplomats warned about Baghdad - 27 Mar 2008 at 3:18pm - WASHINGTON -- The State Department is instructing all personnel at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad not to leave reinforced structures due to incoming insurgent fire that has killed two American government workers this week.
The fact that it's getting worse means it's getting better, right?

EPA cautious global warming. - 27 Mar 2008 at 3:15pm - WASHINGTON (AP - The Environmental Protection Agency is making clear it will not be rushed into a decision on whether to regulate emissions linked to global warming, as directed by the Supreme Court.

Bush scolds Congress about Iraq - 27 Mar 2008 at 11:28am - DAYTON, Ohio -- President Bush on Thursday defended the slow pace of progress in Iraq, asserting "it is not foot-dragging" as Iraqi politicians try to reach agreement on political, security and economic goals.
So it's simple ineptitude? Or a mal-formed strategy?

Iraq PM vows to continue crackdown on Shiite militiamen - 27 Mar 2008 at 9:48am - BASRA (AFP) - Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki vowed on Thursday to enforce a crackdown on Shiite gunmen despite protests and mounting casualties, as Iraqi troops battled militias in the cities of Basra and Kut.
So, if Iraqi troops are able to take on such missions without assistance from the U.S., what is the purpose of the continued U.S. occupation? There was something about standing up and standing down -- was it "lean to the left, lean to the right, stand up, stand down, fight, fight, fight"?

Abbas gets ticket to White House - 27 Mar 2008 at 9:37am - WASHINGTON -- President Bush has invited Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas to the White House in an effort to give a kick to Mideast peace talks, the White House said Thursday.
Imagine if Bill Clinton had done anything like this.

Thought for the day:
The wages of sin are death, but by the time taxes are taken out, it's just sort of a tired feeling. -Paula Poundstone

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

In the News: Mar-26

Many killed by U.S. strike in Iraq's Hilla: sources - 26 Mar 2008 at 3:07pm - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Many people were killed and wounded by a U.S. air strike called in support of Iraqi forces in the town of Hilla south of Baghdad, Iraqi security sources said.

WTC cleanup workers' cases can proceed - 26 Mar 2008 at 2:00pm - NEW YORK -- Lawsuits can proceed on behalf of thousands of workers who say they were not properly protected as they cleaned up the World Trade Center site after the 2001 terrorist attacks, a federal appeals court said Wednesday.

Bush consults advisers on Iraq - 26 Mar 2008 at 1:19pm - WASHINGTON -- Wrapping up a series of consultations on Iraq, President Bush met at the Pentagon on Wednesday with the military's top leaders to hear their views on prospects for further troop reductions.
And, presumably, those advisors who favor further troop reductions will be resigning presently.

France may send more troops to Afghanistan: Sarkozy - 26 Mar 2008 at 1:17pm - LONDON (Reuters) - France will send more troops to Afghanistan to help fight the Taliban and al Qaeda if certain conditions are met by NATO, President Nicolas Sarkozy said on Wednesday.

U.S. acknowledges navy warning shot killed Egyptian - 26 Mar 2008 at 12:01pm - CAIRO (Reuters) - The United States said on Wednesday a warning shot fired from a U.S. naval vessel appeared to have killed an Egyptian on Monday, after earlier denying reports of such a death.

Thought for the day:
Imagine what it would be like if TV actually were good. It would be the end of everything we know. -Marvin Minsky

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

In the News: Mar-25

Officials mum on what bullet fired on U.S. Airways flight hit - 25 Mar 2008 at 2:22pm - US Airways has grounded the pilot whose gun discharged accidentally during a flight from Denver to Charlotte over the weekend — the first time a weapon has been discharged aboard a plane in the five years since crew members have been allowed to carry guns.

Government benefit programs in trouble - 25 Mar 2008 at 2:23pm - WASHINGTON -- Trustees for the government's two biggest benefit programs warned Tuesday that Social Security and Medicare are facing "enormous challenges" with the threat to Medicare's solvency far more severe.

Western Antarctic Ice Chunk Collapses - 25 Mar 2008 at 1:38pm - WASHINGTON (AP) -- A chunk of Antarctic ice nine times the size of Manhattan has suddenly collapsed, putting an even larger glacial area at risk.

Sadr militia battle troops in three Iraqi cities - 25 Mar 2008 at 1:15pm - BAGHDAD (AFP) - Moqtada al-Sadr's militiamen Tuesday battled troops in three Iraqi cities on Tuesday, including the capital, as the hardline Shiite cleric threatened a countrywide campaign of civil revolt.

Thought for the day:
When I was a boy I was told that anybody could become President. Now I'm beginning to believe it. -Clarence Darrow (1857 - 1938)

Monday, March 24, 2008

Informed Comment: The Iraq War was a Conspiracy

Informed Comment: Unger: The Iraq War was a Conspiracy ....In other words, we went to war not because of intelligence failures, ...but because of intelligence successes--successful black propaganda operations, successful disinformation operations--that were deliberately designed to mislead the American people....

In the News: Mar-24

Telecom lobbyists tied to McCain - 24 Mar 2008 at 1:48pm - Dozens of lobbyists have ties to Sen. John McCain's presidential campaign particularly from one industry he helps oversee.

US Air pilot's gun discharges during flight - 24 Mar 2008 at 1:38pm - A gun carried by a US Airways pilot accidentally discharged during a flight from Denver to Charlotte on Saturday, according to airline and federal officials.

Bush committed to Iraq success - 24 Mar 2008 at 10:11am - WASHINGTON -- The White House said Monday it was "a sober moment" as the U.S. death toll in Iraq climbed to 4,000. President Bush received a lengthy update on the war and aides said he was likely to embrace recommendations for a pause in troop withdrawals beyond those already scheduled.
Just wondering: how do you "pause" something that hasn't yet been scheduled?

U.S. toll in Iraq hits 4,000 as four soldiers killed - 24 Mar 2008 at 9:38am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The death toll of U.S. soldiers in Iraq reached 4,000 on Monday, days after the fifth anniversary of a war that President George W. Bush says the United States is on track to win.
How is he measuring this on-trackness? And have we had a recent update regarding the definition of "victory"?

Thought for the day:
A diplomat must always think twice before he says nothing. -Irish Proverb

Thursday, March 20, 2008

In the News: Mar-20

Canada's top court agrees to hear Khadr's unfair treatment claim - 20 Mar 2008 at 3:00pm - The Supreme Court of Canada will hear arguments from Omar Khadr's lawyers about the legality of his detention and upcoming military trial at a U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Democrats want contract fraud documents - 20 Mar 2008 at 3:01pm - WASHINGTON -- House Democrats are demanding documents about a multibillion-dollar overseas contracting loophole to track down how - and why - the Bush administration slipped it into plans to protect taxpayer money.

Libby loses law license - 20 Mar 2008 at 11:34am - WASHINGTON -- Former top White House aide I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby has been barred from practicing law in the nation's capital following his perjury conviction in the case of a CIA operative's leaked identity.

Thought for the day:
The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable. -John Kenneth Galbraith (1908 - 2006)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

In the News: Mar-19

Meghan McCain, unplugged - 19 Mar 2008 at 12:23pm - Likening herself to her dad, Meghan says: “I’m almost incapable of bullshit. He’s the same way.”
Is it just me, or does that sound like total bullshit?

Bush picks new homeland security adviser - 19 Mar 2008 at 3:12pm - WASHINGTON -- President Bush on Wednesday named a veteran prosecutor, Ken Wainstein, as his homeland security adviser.

Iraqi Provincial Elections Law Approved - 19 Mar 2008 at 1:42pm - BAGHDAD (AP) -- Iraq's presidential council withdrew its objection to a provincial elections law on Wednesday, giving a major boost to U.S.-backed efforts to promote national reconciliation on the fifth anniversary of the war.

Fannie, Freddie cleared to pump $200 billion into market - 19 Mar 2008 at 10:41am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The regulator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac on Wednesday eased capital requirements for the two biggest housing finance agencies, allowing them to pump up to $200 billion into the distressed U.S. mortgage market.

U.S. Spy Boss: Iraq WMD Intel Failure Just 'A Bad Hair Day' - March 19, 2008 07:54:21 AM - The failure of U.S. intelligence in assessing Iraq's weapons of mass destruction was like "a yearbook photo on your worst hair day ever," according to one of the country's top spy bosses, Thomas Fingar, deputy director of National Intelligence. Fingar made the comment in defending the overall quality of U.S. intelligence during an appearance at the Council of Foreign Relations in New York, five years to the week after the 2003 start of the Iraq war. At another point, Fingar called the U.S. assessment of whether Iraq had nuclear weapons "the single worst product" he had seen in his 38 years serving in various U.S. intelligence agencies.

Sequoia Threatens Over Voting Machine Evaluation - March 18, 2008 03:31:00 PM - enodo writes "Voting machine manufacturer Sequoia has sent well-known Princeton professor Ed Felten and his colleague Andrew Appel a letter threatening to sue if New Jersey sends them a machine to evaluate. It's not clear from the letter Sequoia sent whether they intend to sue the professors or the state — presumably that ambiguity was deliberate on Sequoia's part. Put another clipping in your scrapbook of cases of companies invoking 'intellectual property rights' for bogus reasons." Sequoia seems to be claiming that no one can make a "report" regarding their "software" without their permission.

Thought for the day:
Hegel was right when he said that we learn from history that man can never learn anything from history. -George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Delta to offer buyouts to some 30,000 - 18 Mar 2008 at 1:02pm - Delta will offer voluntary severance payouts to roughly 30,000 employees and cut domestic capacity this year as part of an overhaul of its business plan to deal with soaring fuel prices.
More evidence of the "success" of Cheney's Iraq "endeavor"?

McCain: Don't Pull Troops From Iraq - 18 Mar 2008 at 10:30am - AMMAN, Jordan (AP) -- Sen. John McCain, the Republican presidential nominee-in-waiting, said Tuesday that any hasty pullout from Iraq would be a mistake that would favor Iran and al-Qaida.
"Hasty", presumably, meaning "at any time in the next thousand years".

Cheney says U.S. will complete mission in Iraq - 18 Mar 2008 at 9:18am - BALAD AIR BASE, Iraq (Reuters) - The United States intends to complete its mission in Iraq and will not allow the country to become a staging ground for terrorist attacks on Americans, U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney said on Tuesday. "All Americans can be certain that we intend to complete the mission so that another generation of Americans does not have to come back here and do it again," Cheney told about 3,000 U.S. troops at Balad Air Base 70 km (45 miles) north of Baghdad.
Disarm Saddam again?

Thought for the day:
There is no moral precept that does not have something inconvenient about it. -Denis Diderot (1713 - 1784)

Monday, March 17, 2008

In the News: Mar-17

Red Cross, Amnesty paint grim picture of post-invasion Iraq - 17 Mar 2008 at 6:36am - GENEVA (AFP) - Five years after the US-led invasion, Iraq faces a major humanitarian crisis, with law and order and economic recovery a distant prospect, international aid and human rights groups said Monday.

Iraq invasion was "successful endeavor": Cheney - 17 Mar 2008 at 12:15pm - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney on Monday declared the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq a "successful endeavor" in a visit to Iraq that was overshadowed by a suicide bombing that killed at least 25 people.
Funny guy.

FBI watchlist data unreliable - 17 Mar 2008 at 11:36am - WASHINGTON -- A new Justice Department audit shows that for nearly three years the FBI gave outdated, incomplete and error-riddled data about terror suspects to be added to the government's watchlist.

McCain, Cheney: US in Iraq Long-Term - 17 Mar 2008 at 10:44am - BAGHDAD (AP) -- Vice President Dick Cheney and Sen. John McCain vowed in meetings with Iraq's prime minister Monday that the U.S. would maintain a long-term military presence in Iraq until al-Qaida is defeated there.
Can al Qaida ever be defeated in Iraq, by the U.S., or by anyone?

An overview of the NSA's domestic spying program - March 16, 2008 08:50:00 PM - A recent report gives a great overview of the NSA's domestic spying program. Much of the info in the article has been known for a while, but the few new details are worth looking at in order to appreciate the scope and nature of the NSA's spying program.

Thought for the day:
When you go into court you are putting your fate into the hands of twelve people who weren't smart enough to get out of jury duty. -Norm Crosby

Friday, March 14, 2008

In the News: Mar-14

McCain says al Qaeda might try to tip U.S. election - 14 Mar 2008 at 1:11pm - SPRINGFIELD, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate John McCain said on Friday he fears that al Qaeda or another extremist group might attempt spectacular attacks in Iraq to try to tilt the U.S. election against him.
So be sure, if al Qaida should attempt a spectacular attack in Iraq just ahead of the election, to vote for John McCain -- to demonstrate that your vote wasn't determined by al Qaida. That'll show them. Or something.

House passes new surveillance bill - 14 Mar 2008 at 2:42pm - WASHINGTON -- The House on Friday narrowly approved a Democratic bill that would set rules for the government's eavesdropping on phone calls and e-mails inside the United States.

Military mental health policies examined - 14 Mar 2008 at 1:47pm - WASHINGTON -- Chris Scheuerman believes the military he served for 20 years failed his Army son Jason, who shot himself to death in his Iraq barracks almost three years ago.

White House played role in smog rule - 14 Mar 2008 at 9:48am - WASHINGTON -- The Environmental Protection Agency agreed to weaken an important part of its new smog requirements after being told at the last minute that President Bush preferred a less stringent approach, according to government documents.

Thought for the day:
I've always said that in politics, your enemies can't hurt you, but your friends will kill you. -Ann Richards

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Now Is the Time?

Paulson: Time to toughen rules on mortgage brokers - 13 Mar 2008 at 12:10pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Financial regulators pledged on Thursday to toughen rules for mortgage brokers, lenders and credit agencies in a bid to ease a credit crunch and to try to restore investor confidence in markets.
What was wrong with seven years ago?

Senate rejects extending some tax cuts - 13 Mar 2008 at 11:53am - The Senate has rejected an extension of President Bush's tax cuts for middle- and higher-income taxpayers, investors and people inheriting businesses and big estates.

Audit: More FBI privacy abuses in 2006 - 13 Mar 2008 at 11:16am - WASHINGTON -- The Justice Department's inspector general reported Thursday that the FBI continued to improperly obtain personal information about Americans for terrorism investigations during 2006. He reserved judgment on whether corrective actions under way will work.

Bush says would veto House eavesdropping bill - 13 Mar 2008 at 10:32am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush, locked in a battle with Congress over eavesdropping legislation, said on Thursday the House of Representatives version of the bill was "unwise" and he would veto it.

Pentagon Report Fails to Link Saddam, Al-Qaida - 13 Mar 2008 at 9:41am - A Pentagon report concludes Saddam Hussein's regime carried out terrorist operations and provided sanctuary and aid to terrorist groups. But confiscated Iraqi documents show no direct link between the former Iraqi dictator and al-Qaida.

Thought for the day:
The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it. -Flannery O'Connor (1925 - 1964)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

In the News: Mar-12

US official: Kosovo not a precedent - 12 Mar 2008 at 2:48pm - WASHINGTON -- Challenged by Congress, a State Department official said Wednesday that U.S. support for Kosovo's independence was an exception to the general rule of discouraging secession.

Afghan war trend worse than Iraq: U.S. trainer - 12 Mar 2008 at 12:14pm - STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - The tide of the war in Afghanistan is running against the United States and its allies, in contrast to an improving trend in Iraq, a U.S. military official and counter-insurgency expert said on Wednesday.

FBI asked to probe e-mail controversy - 12 Mar 2008 at 11:43am - WASHINGTON -- An ethics advocacy group has asked the FBI to investigate the White House e-mail controversy, saying electronic messages about the Valerie Plame affair may have been destroyed.

Thought for the day:
Politicians should read science fiction, not westerns and detective stories. -Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - )

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Bush warns that gains in Iraq fragile and reversible - 11 Mar 2008 at 2:58pm - NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Reuters) - President George W. Bush warned on Tuesday that security gains in Iraq were "fragile" and "reversible" as he appealed to skeptical Americans for patience nearly five years after the U.S.-led invasion.
Fragile and reversible, yes; but isn't that just one of the reasons the invasion wasn't advisable in the first place?

U.N. torture envoy says U.S. deny access to Iraq jails - 11 Mar 2008 at 3:09pm - GENEVA (Reuters) - The U.N. investigator on torture said on Tuesday the United States had denied his request to visit U.S.-run jails in Iraq and insisted a visit could help clear its legacy of the prison abuse scandal in Abu Ghraib.

Auditors: Iraq faces budget surplus - 11 Mar 2008 at 2:12pm - WASHINGTON -- Iraq isn't spending much of its own money, despite soaring oil revenues that are pushing the country toward a massive budget surplus, auditors told Congress on Tuesday.

Oil prices break fresh record high near 110 dollars - 11 Mar 2008 at 8:50am - LONDON (AFP) - Oil prices struck a record high of 109.72 dollars per barrel on Tuesday after the dollar hit a fresh all-time low against the euro and amid persistent energy supply concerns.

Iraqis still ask if U.S. invasion was worth it - 11 Mar 2008 at 8:59am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Five years after U.S. and British forces swept into Iraq and toppled Saddam Hussein, many Iraqis are asking if the violence and upheaval that turned their lives upside down was worth it.

Bomb Hits Bus in Iraq, Killing 16 - 11 Mar 2008 at 8:43am - The U.S. military said Tuesday that three American soldiers were killed the day before by a roadside bomb north of Baghdad, bringing to eight the number of troops who died that day. In southern Iraq, meanwhile, a roadside bomb hit a bus that was...

Oaths of allegiance for U.K. students? - 11 Mar 2008 at 9:23am - British students should take an oath of allegiance and participate in citizenship ceremonies as a way to boost national pride, a government-commissioned review said Tuesday.

Thought for the day:
War does not determine who is right - only who is left. -Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970)

Thursday, March 06, 2008

It Would Tell Me That They're Trying Harder

Commander Warns of al-Qaida Threat to US - 6 Mar 2008 at 10:19pm - WASHINGTON (AP) -- Al-Qaida terrorists may be plotting more urgently to attack the United States to maintain their credibility and ability to recruit followers, the U.S. military commander in charge of domestic defense said Thursday. Air Force Gen. Gene Renuart, chief of the U.S. Northern Command, told reporters he has not seen any direct threats tied to the U.S. presidential elections. But he said it would be imprudent to think that such threats are not there. "We need only to look at Spain and see that they're certainly willing to try to do something that is significant that could affect an election process," Renuart said. "I think it would be imprudent of us to let down our guard believing that if there's no credible threat that you know of today, there won't be something tomorrow."
Has someone suggested that he let his guard down? What is he talking about?

"If an organization like that is to maintain credibility and continue to grow more of its extremists, it has to show tangible results," Renuart said. "So I think there may be a certain sense of urgency among that organization to have an effect. So it would tell me that they're trying harder."
So there's no actual threat -- only a theory? Why the press conference?

Court order sought in e-mail controversy - 6 Mar 2008 at 10:22pm - WASHINGTON -- A private group told a federal court Thursday the Bush administration made apparently false and misleading statements in court about the White House e-mail controversy.

Army: Psychiatrists needed on warfronts - 6 Mar 2008 at 10:18pm - WASHINGTON -- U.S. troops on the battlefield found it harder to get the mental health care they needed last year, when violence rose in Afghanistan and new tactics pushed soldiers in Iraq farther from their operating bases.

In the News: Mar-06

9/11 attacks harm First Amendment - 6 Mar 2008 at 1:26pm - WASHINGTON -- The shadow of the Sept. 11 terror attacks is eclipsing press freedom and other constitutional safeguards in the United States, Associated Press President and CEO Tom Curley said Thursday.

Whistleblower: Cellular carrier giving FBI unfettered access - March 06, 2008 10:30:00 AM - A security analyst has revealed that a major mobile telecommunications carrier has a secret backdoor which provides an undisclosed third party with unfettered access to the network, including the content of calls. Evidence suggests that the recipient of that data is the FBI.

U.S. forces kill 11, detain 14 in Iraqi raid - 6 Mar 2008 at 8:38am - U.S. and Iraqi forces killed nine suspected insurgents and detained eight others in a raid targeting al-Qaeda in northern Iraq, ...

U.S. military says 2,000 troops leaving Iraq - 6 Mar 2008 at 8:40am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Some 2,000 U.S. soldiers are being withdrawn from Baghdad as part of a planned reduction of U.S. forces in Iraq, the U.S. military said on Thursday.

Thought for the day:
The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best - and therefore never scrutinize or question. -Stephen Jay Gould (1941 - 2002)

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

In the News: Mar-05

Jobs needed or Iraq troop pullout at risk: U.S. general - 5 Mar 2008 at 1:14pm - TIKRIT, Iraq (Reuters) - The United States may be forced to halt planned troop withdrawals from Iraq unless Iraqi authorities move faster to create jobs and improve basic services, a top U.S. general said on Wednesday.

More F.B.I. Privacy Breaches Reported - 5 Mar 2008 at 1:15pm - The F.B.I. improperly used national security letters in 2006 to obtain personal data on Americans during terror and spy investigations, Director Robert Mueller said Wednesday.

Iraqi: Turkish helicopters bomb areas in Iraq - 5 Mar 2008 at 9:13am - Turkish warplanes attacked Kurdish separatist rebels in northern Iraq less than a week after the end of a large-scale ground ...

Thought for the day:
There can be no real individual freedom in the presence of economic insecurity. -Chester Bowles (1901 - 1986)

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

In the News: Mar-04

OPEC set to snub Bush plea for higher output - 4 Mar 2008 at 1:34pm - VIENNA (AFP) - OPEC on Tuesday looked set to ignore US President George W. Bush's demand that the cartel increase oil output at its meeting here, with hardline members even calling for a cut in production.
Heckuvajob, Mr. "I-have-influence-with-the-oil-industry".

Top Commander: Iraq Assessment Needed - 4 Mar 2008 at 10:59am - WASHINGTON (AP) -- The top U.S. military commander in the Middle East said Tuesday that officials will probably need some time this summer to reassess the situation in Iraq before drawing down more troops.
Is that because things are going so well? Or because they're going so badly? Or is it just always going to require more time?

Odierno: Iran supporting Iraq militias - 4 Mar 2008 at 10:29am - WASHINGTON -- The former No. 2 U.S. commander in Iraq says Iran is still training, funding and providing weapons to insurgents there.
Does he also discuss to whom the U.S. is providing training, funding, and weapons?

Bank of Canada opts for aggressive interest rate cut - 4 Mar 2008 at 9:50am - The Bank of Canada on Tuesday chopped its key overnight lending rate by half a percentage point to 3.5 per cent to prevent U.S. economic weakness from spilling over into Canada.

Critics: New screening methods target Muslims - 4 Mar 2008 at 7:52am - WASHINGTON — In the six and a half years since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, federal law-enforcement agencies have secretly established profiling techniques to screen immigrants based on their nationalities, protocols that critics charge encourage the unjustified targeting of Muslims.

Thought for the day:
The universe is not required to be in perfect harmony with human ambition. -Carl Sagan (1934 - 1996)

Monday, March 03, 2008

Known Unknowns?

U.S. launches missile strike in Somalia - 3 Mar 2008 at 8:58am - KISMAYU, Somalia (Reuters) - Two U.S. missiles hit a house in southern Somalia on Monday, according to local officials, in an attack Washington said was directed at "known terrorists".

EPA unions slam managers - 3 Mar 2008 at 2:33pm - WASHINGTON -- Unionized EPA workers are withdrawing from a cooperation agreement with the political appointees who supervise them over controversies including the agency's refusal to let California regulate greenhouse gas emissions from cars and trucks.

Warren Buffett says U.S. in recession - 3 Mar 2008 at 2:12pm - Billionaire Warren Buffett said Monday he believes the United States economy is in a recession, based on what he is seeing from the businesses owned by his holding company, Berkshire Hathaway.

Diebold Receives a Takeover Offer - 3 Mar 2008 at 2:02am - United Technologies made an unsolicited $3 billion bid for Diebold, one of the largest makers of automated teller machines and voting machines.

Ahmadinejad tells foreign powers to quit region - 3 Mar 2008 at 6:23am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad used a visit to Baghdad on Monday to tell the United States to pull out of Iraq, saying its presence there had brought only destruction and division.

Sweet is war to those who know it not. -Pindar (522 BC - 443 BC)