1. The electoral showdown between Republican House Speaker Karen Minnis and her Democratic challenger, Rob Brading, is going to light up the sky like a meteor over Yakima. This is the race to watch. The Deep East side of town is ablaze with campaign posters featuring the porky Ms. Minnis, whose dubious qualifications for public office are matched only by her abrasive, unprofessional tactics.
2. Measure 48 is coming to Oregon. This is the vicious little time bomb of a law that aims to reshape Oregon government over the coming decade, effectively damaging all aspects of public life beyond repair. It's a spending limits bill and it isn't worth a flea's fart.
3. Seven of the highest-paid executives of publicly traded companies in Oregon racked up double digit losses for their shareholders while raking in massive salaries and benefits.
4. Canned Fish, Anyone? Pacificorp is still trying to haul this one over the transom: The company wants to truck salmon around four dams on the Klamath River as part of its license renewal process.
5. No License to Kill: A pest control company employee sprayed a house where an elderly woman subsequently died. The company tried to weasel out of paying compensation to the family. And it turns out that the fellow who did the spraying did not have a license to apply the chemicals involved.
6. A rendering plant in central Oregon is set to close. Bodily fluids were leeching into the groundwater. (And of course, groundwater is important to developers building destination resorts on the thirsty land..
7. This past weekend in Salem people turned out to march in support of the NAACP's semi-annual Northwest conference. And to demand justice and a new trial for an Oregon student convicted of killing a fellow student in a fight.
8. Police shot and killed a homeless - and quite likely disturbed - man who brandished a toy gun at them. (As an aside, the man was living behind a WalMart. Now who are the American Monsters?)
9. The Supreme Court is open for business. And How... Judicial watchdog groups have pointed out the high court this time around under the direction of John Roberts, is far more interested in hearing cases having to do with money that the court under Rehnquist, ever was.
10. Not so the Idaho Supreme Court: Just to the east of the formerly progressive state of Oregon, an initiative proposal that would allow residents to grow, sell and use marijuana within Sun Valley's city limits can move forward - and move it will. Meanwhile back in Oregon the Sanctimonious multitudes won't let us smoke in bars... .
11. Foley's Follies: The Feds are investigating Mark Foley, the Republican Representative who resigned on Friday. Foley's GOP cronies have kept the Representatives predatory moves under wraps for about a year now. When not pestering Capitol Hill pages for sexual favors, Foley was the co-chairman of the Congressional Missing and exploited Children's Caucus.
12. Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose: Faced with a rising tide of opposition, counter balanced by a sharp drop in support, what does Bush do? He calls for fighting "America's Enemies" (At this point, that's most of the rest of the world. So far we haven't been attacked by extraterrestrials... ). Bush is amping up his rather offensive offensive because... well..it's election season and George's 'Fightin' Words' go over well with the ignorant, devious hicks and rubes that connived to put him in office - and keep him there.
13. Defense Secretary Rumsfeld is under renewed attack (Oh how I wish this were really true... ) for his management of the "war" (Oh how I wish this were true; No one, in fact, seems to be managing it... ) Yet The Don insists he has the President's full confidence. And I'm sure that, at least, is true.
14. Colin Powell's book is out and judging from the cha show response, it's a scorcher. The people who ought to read, it won't; and the people who already have a good idea of what it says, will read it. (Or at least tell their friends that they did... )
15. Both critics and supporters of Representative John Murtha turned out this weekend in Pennsylvania. Just not on the same day (Too bad; I'd love to see Murtha kick somebody's ass) He's being challenged in his reelection bid by Republican Diana Irey, who says she was inspired to run by Murtha's stance on the "war". Murtha's stance on the "war" was inspired by the fact that he spent 37 years in the Marines, retired as a Colonel, served in Vietnam, was awarded two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star as well as the Vietnam cross of Gallantry. Other than that, what would the guy know about war that the inspired Ms. Irey does not?
16. Thousands of credit-union customers are turning to payday loan sharks for small loans to be repaid with their next paychecks. (It's actually a microcosm of America's fiscal woes worldwide... )
17. Be Afraid! Be Very Afraid!: Stephen King - No. Not that one, but the effect is similar - Chief Economist at the largest merchant banking company in the world, Hong Kong & Shanghai Banking Corporation, says that America is living waaaaay beyond its meager means.
18. A Charleston, South Carolina City Council member says that parents who can't control their children should be sterilized "like pets."
19. Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is facing a nasty run-off with CIA-appointed opponent Geraldo (I kid you not) Alkmin.
20. Hugo Chavez reports that Bush told his "henchmen" to use any method to oust him. (Note to President Chavez: This is not news to us... )
21. Well, the Israeli's have finally withdrawn from Southern Lebanon. But eight Palestinians were killed and dozens injured during internecine fighting in the street of Gaza yesterday.