1. Getting Away With Murder: A Multnomah County Grand Jury found "no criminal wrongdoing by police or anyone else in the September 17th death of James Chasse. This despite the fact that Chasse was brought to the hospital with most of his ribs crushed and assorted internal organs damaged. Witnesses reported that the officers involved in the fatal beating appeared to be uncomfortable with what they were doing.
2. Seven out of nine Oregon newspapers are endorsing Ron Saxton over incumbent Ted Kulongoski. Polls show most voters favor Kulongoski. (Last spring the race was fixed at the GOP's annual Dorchester Love Fest. The media - even The Girl Who Can't Say No Oregonian - were barred from the event.
3. Howard Dean is in town today to stump for Kulongoski. (Don't much like the Guv? Think again and imagine what Oregon will look like after a year or so of Saxton... Now get behind Kulongoski and push... )
4. It Isn't Easy Being Dixon: Green Party candidate for Senate in Washington State, Aaron Dixon was arrested for trespassing outside a TV station in Seattle. Dixon wanted to be included in a televised debate that included Maria 'Kill Kill' Cantwell, Republican Mike McGavick.
5. You Say That Like It's a Good Thing: The Oregonian ran a little comparison between Colorado's spend limits law, TABOR and Oregon's version Measure 48. The paper concluded that the effects - should the measure pass - will be similar for the State,... .only more so.
6. In Seattle, tickets to an appearance by Barak Obama sold out in two hours.
7. Idaho is gearing up to ban same-sex marriage.
8. Got Fear? Bush gleefully signed a bill authorizing secret military tribunals, torture and abuse of prisoners all in the name of keeping Americans "safe." (Information obtained by means of torture is invariably bogus, but that doesn't matter because the trials are secret so who would notice? )
9. Social Security checks: Get 'em while you can! Since 1975 the amount pensioners get is supposed to be adjusted every year in accordance with cost of living changes. So here we are with the Dow about to break 12 hundred and these people are going to get $33 dollars a month more next year. One the same page, people who work on Wall Street (Brokers, mainly. We're not talking janitors; They are still in line to get those Soc Sec checks... .) are making on average $300 thousand dollars a year, not taking into account - no pun intended - benefits, stock options and retirement plans. Yes, America really is the Land of Opportunists...
10. All of which makes it even more of an outrage that a federal judge in Houston "erased" Ken Lay's conviction for fraud and conspiracy. In so doing, the court made it impossible for the government to seize nearly $44 million dollars from his estate that might in small part have compensated Lay's victims. (Cheer up: They still can look forward to an extra $33 dollars a month next year... .)
11. Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid is going to have to amend his Ethics reports not that he too has been caught with his hand in the bag.
12. Regulate This!!!: The former Commissioner of the FDA, Lester Crawford has got some explaining to do. Crawford actually has some pleading guilty to do. He failed to disclose that he owned a good slice of shares inn some of the companies his agency was supposed to be regulating.
13. On the Broomstick Again: Condoleeza Rice is off to Asia with a message for America's "allies" (Translation: Nations with whom Uncle Sam is in serious debt so they have to pretend to be friendly to the old pervert... .) Here's what Rice had to say to Japan, South Korea, China and Taiwan: The US is ready to use the "full range" - Boy Howdy - of its military might to defend them. The idea is to prevent other Asian nations from getting the idea that they also need to get nuked-up. (Though enterprising individuals can probably find whatever they need at a Chinese Wal-Mart... )
14. Full Range Chicken: A North Korean defectors says that the only way to stop the North from using its own "full range" on us is to "oust" Kim Jong Il (You know, when the State Department threatened to cut off Kim's supply of caviar and Dom Perignon, I didn't think that would work either... )
15. Step Aside, April: October turns out to be the cruelest month. Ten US soldiers have been killed in the last couple of days, bringing the body count for this month to 67 - or something like that. If you believe the "official" numbers, I have some real estate on Mars I know you'd just love...
16. Meanwhile, Iraqis are left wondering why the American military forces did nothing to stop the massacre in Balad last weekend.
17. Wake Up and Smell the Sulfur: Guatemala has a slight lead in thee contest for the non-permanent seat on the UN security Council. Were it not for congenital meddling in Latin American affairs on the part of the United States, Venezuela would be the clear winner. You didn't see the President of Guatemala shaking hands around the world for this past year? In fact, do you even know who the President of Guatemala is? (Hint: It's Oscar Berger). There is no doubt in my mind that Oscar wants the seat to go to Venezuela as much as Venezuela does; but - alas - it's too late for that: Berger already sold his soul to The Devil. If he caves on the deal, there goes all that US aid... ..
18. The UN wants you to know that Asian pollution is about to blow up in all our faces, long before North Korea gets around to any hijinks.
19. My Goodness My Guinness: UN officials say that around the world this week some 24 million people 'stood up against poverty.' (And those who didn't in all probability were too week from hunger ... ) It's an official record, however, and it goes in the Book.