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1207 am 'Get This' news

Summary of the KBOO am news for Thursday, December 7th, 2006.
12/07/06 Get This
sui generis


1. We're not In Kansas Anymore... : Northwest members of Congress are pleased with the results of the Iraq Study Group's report. Not so pleased with the results of the Bush administration's war.
2. Searchers found the body of James Kim yesterday. After a week trapped in the car with his wife and kids, he had gone to get help. He was found a short distance from the spot the car had become stranded.
3. Measure 44 passed by a wide margin in November, so get out there and get your prescription drugs. Carpe Xanax!
4. Con Brio!: The Portland Development Commission is backing briskly away from requiring developers on public/private projects to pay prevailing wages to construction workers.
5. Republican Charles Grassley managed with slither into the EPA's panties once again Farmers would be off the hook (But whenever were they not?) for costly air pollution clean-up under an obscure provision slipped into a tax bill by The Talented Mr. Grassley. The tax bill may be the last "act" of Congress.
6. Nearly one in three requests for public documents in Multnomah County are "falling through the cracks". County employees gleefully bounced callers around the phone court and sometimes asked they why they wanted the information and what female callers were wearing at the moment... .
7. Bill Sizemore won a legal victory yesterday when a State Appeals Court said he isn't personally responsible for the $2.5 million dollar racketeering judgment that teachers unions won against him. Bill 'Size Doesn't Matter' more, declared the dubious win, a "blow" to the unions. Unions to Sizemore: We'll be back with a little "blow" of our own...
8. Mister Bush, Tear This Dam Down: The Army Corps of Engineers wants to know what you think about the plan to dismantle two dams on the Olympic Peninsula's Elwah River. Orca advocates are hoping that strong salmon runs can be restored.
9. As the world already knew, even if the invasion were remotely legal or even slightly justifiable or if Iraq had ever before posed a threat to the United States, the Bush administration has done a piss-poor job of waging the sodding thing. It is hard to imagine a greater assortment of brutal acts of aggression and pure stupidity unleashed - with money to burn - on a civilian population. It is even more astounding to note that it took a "Study Group" to put this to Americans in terms they could understand. A body in a box just doesn't say "failure" like an announcement on CNN... ..
10. What's more, the Iraq Study Group says that the violence in Iraq has been "underreported" (Possibly because quite a bit of it has taken the lives of the reporters). In other words, it isn't all about handing out soccer balls to kids and keeping the lights on a couple hours a day, as you have been led to believe. In fact, It's Much Worse Than You Thought.
11. Case in point: Robert Gates was confirmed as the new Secretary of Defense. This way it'll be easier for him to coo ordinate the guns n' drugs trade in order to fund right-wing paramilitary forces in the region...
12. In the final hours of Republican Rule, The Senate has come up with an "all-purpose" bill covering everything from normalized trade with Vietnam and tax breaks for the wealthy to off-shore oil drilling. The House, while preparing its own tax and trade agenda gave conservatives their last chance for a while to vote on an abortion bill. It was defeated.
13. The incoming House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank says he plans to take a long, hard look at why some Americans are not doing so well even with the rising fortunes of the American economy.
14. The White House recently opened a new front in its - more successful than that Iraq brouhaha - war on information. The administration has closed the main library of the EPA's DC office. The library was open to the public and made available detailed information vital to doing the hard work in the name of an environment under constant assault from corporate privateers. Maybe they'll put in a Starbucks instead..
15. Time's a Wastin': With just a handful of days left to do business, the House passed a resolution yesterday denouncing the town of St.Denis, France, a suburb near Paris, for naming a street after Mumia Abu Jamal. Your tax dollars at work. (But if the GOP had maintained its death grip on power, John Bolton would be pestering the UN to levy sanctions against France and possibly Philadelphia... )
16. Six Marines are going to be charged in the killing of 24 civilians in the Iraqi town of Haditha. (Each one of them had a birth, a childhood, favorite toys, best friends, parents, memories of school and family trips, a favorite pair of shoes, a hobby, a career, a few bad habits, a favorite café, birthdays and perhaps photo albums. When each died, a whole world was snuffed out. This must not be forgotten as the tide of blood rises higher every day. Are we drunk on ichor?
17. The Writing On The Whitewalls: General Motors is going to stop making Tahoes and Yukons. (Ironic, isn't it that GM named these monsters after places that are going to die soon largely because of the world's consumption of fossil fuels... .)
18. Flatulence caused an American Airlines to land, disembark all 99 passengers and crew, inspect the baggage and refuse to allow the culprit back on board. (What were they thinking at DHS: "Okay, pal, we're flying this plane into a building or else I'm going to blow the biggest fart you've ever... .")
19. Israeli leader Ehud Olmert says he sees no linkage between the bloody chaos in Iraq, the protests in Lebanon, the on-going violence against the Palestinians. No. Nope. None whatsoever... It's just kindly ol' Unca Ehud. (Wouldn't surprise me at all if an Israeli spy "found" a "nuclear device" in Iran... and soon, too!)
20. Lebanon's pro-West leader Fouad Saniora says he's willing to talk with Hezbollah.
21. Egypt has managed to broker the release of the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit who was captured by Hezbollah back in June.
22. The number of American soldiers killed in Iraq is pushing 3,000.
23. The head of Canada's National Police has resigned in disgrace over the Maher Arar affair. Guiliano Zachardelli gave 'conflicting' (In the sense that some of it was true but most of it wasn't) testimony about the handling of Arar's case.
24. In a last ditch effort to preserve the last large stretch of untouched rainforest on Earth (and also perhaps after coming to the realization that No Forest = No Air... .), the governor of Brazil's Para State has placed under protection an area of the Amazon Basin the size of Illinois.
25. There are protests in Peru over the manifestly flamboyant corruption of provincial leaders.
26. And Speaking of Corrupt Leadership: DRC President Joseph Kabila is "hailing a new era."
27. The UN is backing a peace force for Somalia (Somehow, I don't think a "peace force" is going to have much impact on the wacked-out warlords roaming the streets of Moghadishu.
28. Good News! There's Life on Mars, just like David Bowie said there would be...