1. Nurses in Medford! They have seized the initiative and started a call service patients can use to decide if they require a band aide or an ambulance.
2. There's benzene in the gas, much more here than elsewhere. The EPA figured that since the air is fairly clean here, it is okay to have lower standards and get that air dirtied up.
3. Oregon employers are stepping up efforts to check employee's legal status. (How about stepping up efforts to make sue their workers have health coverage?)
4. Saxton and Kulongoski are in a dead heat. (I've rarely seen the Guv move that fast... whewph1)
5. A strange and rare fish - a ribbonfish to be exact - washed up on the beach near seaside. Ribbonfish are found in very deep, very cold water, so what is this ribbonfish doing on the beach - apart from expiring, that is? Scientists are "puzzled". (Hey, scientists! Hypoxia? Disrupted up-welling cycles? 'I love the smell of benzene in the morning... it smells like... like Victory')
6. It's so hot in California that the air-con is going off all over the place, but if you can just tough it out for a little while longer, it will be the end of Arnold Schwarzenegger's political career.
7. Thousands of dairy cows are dying from the heat.
8. A lake near Tacoma is literally "suffocating" from pollutants. Every living thing in Lake Wapato is on it's way to the Big Lake in the sky.
9. Benzene in the gas and now diacetyl in the popcorn: Health experts and labor unions say that emergency and safety standards are needed to counter a widening outbreak of lung disease among workers exposed to diacetyl, a common ingredient in microwave popcorn.
10. The State of Washington has finally got Victoria BC to commit to stop dumping raw sewage in the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
11. Morning After Bill: The "parental consent" anti-abortion bill has passed in both Houses of Congress, though in slightly different forms. The House measure sets out a national parental notification law.
12. A judge in Missouri has stopped a number of executions by lethal injection because of serious questions regarding the humanity - or lack thereof - of the procedure. (So, let's see, it is okay to kill living breathing people but not tiny blobs of cells? And for Gawdsake, if you are in Las Vegas, don't feed the homeless... )
13. A federal judge threw out the ACLU's lawsuit aimed at blocking AT&T from handing customers' phone and e-mail records to the NSA. The idea is to protect us Merkins from the terrorists.
14. About 50 Israeli tanks moved back into Northern Gaza early this morning. Five Palestinians were killed in air strikes. A strange world we live in, where killing people with rockets fired from warplanes and helicopter gunships is just fine. But blowing yourself up is terrorism... I have a theory about suicide bombers: They don't actually use dynamite or C-4; the explosion is caused by the frustration and heartbreak of losing one's whole life and yet still finding oneself somehow still alive. But it's just a theory... )
15. China has joined the international condemnation of bloodthirsty Israeli aggression.
16. King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has promised millions of dollars in aid to both Lebanon and the Palestinian. King George of the United States has promised millions to Israel.
17. Tropical Storm Kaemi weakened somewhat today but it has killed a number of people all across Southeast Asia.
18. Location, location, location: American "experts" are just back from scoping out the Czech Republic for good sites to build its first anti-missile missile base in Europe. (Something with a view would be nice and maybe a water feature... )
19. Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has filed a criminal complaint against the federal Electoral Institute. (I like this because I've always though Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador would be a terrific name for a law firm... .)
20. Evo Morales says the Catholic Church should handle spiritual things and he'll do the rest, thank you very much.
21. Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory: Mine workers in Honduras don't like the looks of a law that allows foreigners to own as much as 34 percent of Honduran mines. Demonstrations there have shut down a number of major highways.
22. A UNICEF report found that more than 600 children die every day in war-ravaged Congo. Even more are displaced. Not even elections are going help. Get the economic 'colonialistas' out of resource-rich Africa, and the people would have a chance...
23. Donors have pledged some $750 million dollars to Haiti. (The dollars are expected to move in a Southerly direction, pause briefly over Haiti and then flow back north to Citibank, from whence they came. It's sort of like the Gulf Stream, only with money. And again, like the Gulf Stream, there are signs that it might be breaking down... .)
24. Somalia's Islamists have declined to participate in peace talks (Or at least it is presumed that's what they meant by driving through town in jeeps spraying the citizenry with automatic machine gun fire. Just a guess... .could be wrong... )