Sitting at the Stars Hollow News Desk is kind of draining most times. It’s not really the 2 hours a day, which you get used to, it’s that the news is almost uniformly bad.
However since yesterday a few items have come to my attention that are at least somewhat encouraging.
Firstly, the Japanese "scientific research" whale hunt has been suspended about a month early and with only about 10% of the projected catch of 1000. Japan is blaming Sea Shepherd for creating “unsafe conditions” for its crews, but in fact the decision is probably based at least as much on declining demand for whale meat (over 6000 tons, a record, is in cold storage and annual per capita consumption is a mere 4 sashimi style slices a year) and growing international opposition including a suit at the International Court of Justice in The Hague from Australia, a top Japanese trading partner, that is expected to be adjudicated in 2013. This is a pleasant surprise after last year’s effort to raise quotas at the International Whaling Commission.
There are also rumors that David Patreus is going to be rotated out of his position as commander of the ISAF. The down side of this is that he’ll probably fail upwards to Chairman of the JCS, the up side of this is that it will provide an opportunity for Obama to break with Patreus’ strategy of endless occupation and airstrikes.
Well, we can hope.
Finally, even though the controversial Patriot Act Extension passed, it will only be for 3 months. As dday puts it-
Ultimately, this probably only means that the Senate will spend a week of debate three months from now and then extend the whole thing past the Presidential election. But it’s so rare that civil libertarians see even a minor speed bump in the rush to deprive liberty, and even with the three-month extension, that’s what this represents.
My niece works at a T-Shirt kiosk in the Mall and this year for Christmas she got me one that says-
… like that does any good.