March 3, 2010 archive
Mar 03 2010
Mar 03 2010
Here’s the latest GOP “stall tactic” in a very long parade of stall tactics:
Global-Warming Scientists ‘Need to Go Back to Square One,’ Rep. Barton Says
By Karen Schuberg, March 03, 2010
“Science is verifiable, science is something that can be replicated,” Barton, the ranking Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, told CNSNews.com.
“This whole theory of global warming is just that: It’s a theory. It’s based on models. Models are based on variables, and conditions that the modelers that develop the models put into them. And the models don’t replicate what’s happened,” Barton said. “So (scientists) need to go back to square one, look at the empirical data, look at alternative theories, and see if they can find a theory that actually fits the facts.”
Sounds much more like Fudging the Science, to me …
Mar 03 2010
Afternoon Edition is an Open Thread
|From Yahoo News Top Stories|
1 Suicide blasts kill 33 ahead of Iraq polls
by Ali al-Tuwaijri, AFP
Wed Mar 3, 11:02 am ET
|BAQUBA, Iraq (AFP) – Three suicide attacks, including one by a bomber who rode in an ambulance to hospital before blowing himself up, killed 33 people in central Iraq on Wednesday, just days before nationwide elections.
The blasts in Baquba, the deadliest to hit the country in nearly a month, also wounded 55 people and spurred security forces to clamp an immediate curfew on the city, 60 kilometres (40 miles) north of Baghdad.
At least 10 policemen were among the 33 dead, a security official said.
Mar 03 2010
President Obama has proposed a whopping $54 billion in loan guarantees for the construction of new nuclear power plants.
What does that mean? If the costly new nuclear plants aren't finished, then taxpayers cover the huge financial loss.
If they are built, then we're stuck with power plants that generate overpriced electricity and create deadly radioactive waste that will remain toxic for thousands of years.
Either way, the nuclear industry wins, and we lose.
Nuclear power creates deadly radioactive waste, from the mining process onwards. It's got a scary history: think Chernobyl and Three Mile Island.
Just recently, a nuclear plant in Vermont was ordered shut down after radioactive tritium, which is linked to cancer, leaked from the plant into local water supplies.
Nuclear power is so financially risky that even Wall Street won't bet on it. It's a public health and financial disaster waiting to happen.
Instead, our government should promote energy efficiency and a decentralized power system based on safe, clean, renewable energy.
Mar 03 2010
Let’s begin with an essay by Chris Hedges wherein he shines a spotlight on just how pathetic the liberal left really are.
Ralph Nader Was Right About Barack Obama
By Chris Hedges (Courtesy of Truthdig)
We owe Ralph Nader and Cynthia McKinney an apology. They were right about Barack Obama. They were right about the corporate state. They had the courage of their convictions and they stood fast despite wholesale defections and ridicule by liberals and progressives.
Obama lies as cravenly, if not as crudely, as George W. Bush. He promised us that the transfer of $12.8 trillion in taxpayer money to Wall Street would open up credit and lending to the average consumer. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), however, admitted last week that banks have reduced lending at the sharpest pace since 1942. As a senator, Obama promised he would filibuster amendments to the FISA Reform Act that retroactively made legal the wiretapping and monitoring of millions of American citizens without warrant; instead he supported passage of the loathsome legislation. He told us he would withdraw American troops from Iraq, close the detention facility at Guantánamo, end torture, restore civil liberties such as habeas corpus and create new jobs. None of this has happened.
Mar 03 2010
Interference Seen in Blackwater Inquiry
By JAMES RISEN, The New York Times
Published: March 2, 2010
WASHINGTON – An official at the United States Embassy in Iraq has told federal prosecutors that he believes that State Department officials sought to block any serious investigation of the 2007 shooting episode in which Blackwater Worldwide security guards were accused of murdering 17 Iraqi civilians, according to court testimony made public on Tuesday.
In December, a federal judge dismissed the criminal charges against five former Blackwater guards in the Nisour Square shooting, and criticized the Justice Department’s handling of the case, chiding prosecutors for trying to use statements from defendants who had been offered immunity and testimony from witnesses tainted by news media leaks.
The documents made public on Tuesday show that before the December dismissal, prosecutors and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents working on the Nisour Square case took the stand in October to argue that they had plenty of untainted evidence. In a closed-door hearing, they also contended that they had evidence that, in the immediate aftermath of the shootings, there had been a concerted effort to make the case go away, both by Blackwater and by at least some embassy officials.
In fact, prosecutors were told that the embassy had never conducted any significant investigation of any of the numerous shooting episodes in Iraq involving Blackwater before the Nisour Square case, according to the documents.
The dismissal of the criminal case against the guards for Blackwater in the Nisour Square shooting prompted bitter protests by Iraqis against the United States, and it led the Iraqi government to threaten to bring a lawsuit of its own in the case.
The Justice Department has now appealed the dismissal. Blackwater has settled one series of civil lawsuits brought by victims of the Nisour Square shooting, but another lawsuit brought by another group of victims is still pending.
Mar 03 2010
Wednesday Morning Science Supplement is an Open Thread
|From Yahoo News Science|
1 Whale opponents huddle in Florida
by Shaun Tandon, AFP
Tue Mar 2, 9:06 pm ET
|WASHINGTON (AFP) – Key players on whaling huddled behind closed doors in Florida in an uncertain bid to find common ground on an issue that has bitterly divided Australia and Japan.
Negotiators opened talks at a resort hotel in Saint Pete Beach, near Saint Petersburg on Florida’s Gulf coast, participants said. Media were not allowed into the talks in the hopes of encouraging a more open dialogue.
The delegates will review through Thursday a proposal by Cristian Maquieira, chairman of the 88-nation International Whaling Commission (IWC), that aims to work toward a grand compromise bringing aboard all sides on the debate.
Mar 03 2010
My hypothesis is that some men have no stigma attached to failure due to pure solid stupidity.
If true, it follows that if hot plasma stupidity could be contained, cooled and compressed through the states of matter to form a perfectly arranged crystalline structure at absolute zero, solid diamond stupid should look like this:
America is the greatest engine of innovation that has ever existed, and it can’t be duplicated anytime soon, because it is the product of a multitude of factors: extreme freedom of thought, an emphasis on independent thinking, a steady immigration of new minds, a risk-taking culture with no stigma attached to trying and failing, a noncorrupt bureaucracy, and financial markets and a venture capital system that are unrivaled at taking new ideas and turning them into global products.
– Tom Friedman, The Secret From Our Sauce, March 7, 2004
How solid is that?
Mar 03 2010
Ah-ho My Relations,
Each year with the changing of the season I post this rememberance of Wounded Knee 73. I wrote it a few years ago when some of our brave people had walked to Yellowstone to stop the slaughter of our Buffalo relations. When I did I was surprised at the response from people who were too young to remember WK’73 and I was pleased that some old WK vets wrote to me afterwards. So each year on this date I post the short story again and invite you-all to send it around or use as you will.
As you do I ask you to remember that our reasons for going to Wounded Knee still exist and that means the need for struggle and resistance also still exist. Our land and sacred sites are threatened as never before even our sacred Mother herself is faced with unnatural warming caused by extreme greed.
In some areas of conflict between our people and those we signed treaties with, it is best to negotiate or “work within the system” but, because our struggle is one of survival, there are also times when a warrior must stand fast even at the risk of one’s life. I believed that in 1973 when I was thirty and I believe it today in my sixties. But to me Wounded Knee 73 was really not about the fight , it was about the strong statement that our traditional way of living in this world is not about to disappear and our people are not a “vanishing race” as wasicu education would have you believe. As time has passed and I see so many of our young people taking part in a traditional way of living and believing I know our fight was worth it and those we lost for our movement died worthy deaths.
Carter Camp 2010