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1018 am 'Get This' news

Summary of the KBOO am news for Thursday, October 18th, 2007.
1018 am 'Get This' news
1018 am 'Get This' news
10/18/07 Get This
sui generis

1. Oregon's politicos love to talk about "growth", "economic development" and "the future" without ever asking themselves what they mean when they drop those phrases. And god-forbid anyone else ask them. The short answer is that if we keep "growing" and "developing" at the rate we have in the past, the whole state is going to look like Gresham. The reason the country is beautiful is because you don't live there. If you lived there, you would do what you do best: Consume massive amounts of resources and create mountains of waste. Cities are equipped to deal with this: That's what they are all about and in many ways, cities are "greener" than the rural slums erupting like herpes sores around the perimeters of urban areas. Vote 'Yes!'; on Measure 49 - it isn't the greatest piece of legislation but it is a helluva lot better than the poisonous shitstew 37 forced down Oregonians' throats.
2. Edison Carder turned in a fascinating 'Our Backyard' this week. Where the program is usually devoted to Oregon's environment, this edition drew connections between Measure 50 (That's the one mandating higher cigarette taxes to pay for children's health.) and the environment. All well and good. But the gatekeeper standing between kids and doctors will still be the insurance industry (And they say doctors don't use leeches these days... ho, ho, ho. I beg to differ... ) If you're really serious about raising some money for healthcare and you really care about the environment, let's talk about a serious gas tax. The petroleum industry in this country is so heavily subsidized, we pay a fraction of the real cost of a gallon of gas - and don't even get me started on the taxes we pay to support a military whose sole purpose is to make the world safe for Americans to drive... Emissions cause far more disease than smoking ever could - it's just easier to give smokers a hard time than to take on the petroleum companies and the military-industrial complex.
3. Ninety percent of Oregon's teachers are "highly qualified" (So, kids, what's your excuse? Oh, that's right: You think you are entitled to good grades minus the hard work because Mummy and Daddy tell you that you are so clever and so special... )
4. The conservation group Wildlands CPR won a two-year battle to get information from the Forest Service concerning the damage caused by arseholes tearing around the countryside on ATVs and driving other off-road vehicle through sensitive habitat. The silver lining, of course, is that ATV deaths are way up, so there's hope...
5. In Eugene, toxic vapors have been seeping into peoples' houses near the rail yard. (So let's tax toxic vapors. The State would be rolling in money... )
6. Redd-Headed Stepchild: What a difference three days make... On Monday, Scott Redd, the top dog at Bush's National Counterterrorism Center told NBC that America was not necessarily safer from terror than it was before Iraq was invaded by hordes of slackjawed yokels with fifth-grade educations and machine guns. Today, Redd says he is "stepping down" to take care of some "urgent medical problems" (Staying in office might have caused him some really urgent "medical problems" of the sort that inconvenienced Paul Wellstone... )
7. Bush's Attorney General nominee, Michael Mukasey is so certain he's going to get the job, he did not feel obliged to tell the Senate panel how he personally feels about torture... or even what he thinks torture is. Like pornography - very much like pornography - no one in the administration really knows what it is, they just seem to be saying that they know it when they see it and they prefer not to look.
8. Blackwatergate: Most rational people think it would be a good idea to get Blackwater USA out of Iraq. Trouble is, no one has any good ideas as to how we accomplish this... after all, they are the most dangerous guys on the planet...
9. Meanwhile, Merc-in-Chief, Eric Prince says he won't allow Iraqi authorities to arrest his boys in Baghdad.
10. A Cold Day In Hell: The 9th Circuit Court is reconsidering its decision to stop a ski resort in Arizona (???) which is located on a mountain sacred to at least 13 Native American nations from dumping sewage on the slopes to make imitation snow. In March, the Court ruled in favor of the indigenous people. Come October, the three-judge panel must have taken a sip of Kool-Aid, accepted the unmarked envelope, and started waxing their shit-skis...
11. Women's health in America leaves much to be desired.
12. Democrats in Florida are already singing the election blues. The report says that this time around the troubles are of their own making. Past Florida election sorrows might have been avoided if the Dems had not mysteriously vaporized in the bonfire of GOP vanities.
13. Texas Governor Rick Perry held his nose and endorsed Rudy Giuliani. (Sip of Kool-Aid, and the envelope... This won't hurt a bit... )
14. There was an enormous chemical explosion in Port Arthur, Texas this morning.
15. Lynn Cheney says her vicious freak of a husband is distantly related to Barack Obama. Obama's office waxed philosophical, "Well, there's a black sheep in every family," it said in a statement.
16. In France, transportation and utility workers are on strike to preserve their pensions and Nicolas Sarkozy's wife is leaving him. She apparently was a key strategist and the author of much of his campaign platform. And you can stand on that platform all day without seeing a train go by at the moment...
17. Benazir Bhutto is back in town - that town being Karachi. This is going to be good: If religious zealots try to snuff her there will be riots that could bring down Musharraf's military dictatorship. And if no one pops her, she's going to want to run Pakistan in some sort of coalition with Musharraf, which will possibly have the same effect.
18. In Somalia, intelligence officers have seized the United Nation's World Food Program local director. (Smart move, guys: Now food distribute has been halted entirely.)
19. Ehud Olmert is on his way to Moscow (Conveniently avoiding further corruption probes) where he'll meet with the SpyMaster himself, Vladimir the Imputin.
20. Police in Rio de Janeiro raided two crowded favelas yesterday, rounding up and/or killing alleged "drug gang members" as well as a number of innocent bystanders. This is a fairly common occurrence - so much so that Human Right Watch has noted that the police themselves are extremely corrupt and are probably simply protecting their turf.
21. And deep in the Amazon, members of Greenpeace have at last been allowed to leave the - also highly corrupt - logging town where local logging thugs were holding them hostage.