current affairs

Published on January 11 2008

The Associated Press: FBI Wiretaps Dropped Due to Unpaid Bills
WASHINGTON (AP) — Telephone companies cut off FBI wiretaps used to eavesdrop on suspected criminals because of the bureau's repeated failures to pay phone bills on time, according to a Justice Department audit released Thursday. More than half of 990 bills to pay for telecommunication surveillance in five unidentified FBI field offices were not paid on time, the report shows. In one office alone, unpaid costs for wiretaps from one phone company totaled $66,000.

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Published on January 11 2008

I love that attitude. A good match for the man's altitude. Edmund Hillary, first atop Everest, dies
Hillarys life was marked by grand achievements, high adventure, discovery, excitement — and by his personal humility. Humble to the point that he only admitted being the first man atop Everest long after the death of climbing companion Tenzing Norgay. He had pride in his feats. Returning to base camp as the man who took the first step onto the top of the worlds highest peak, he declared: "We knocked the bastard off."

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Published on December 31 2007

Before I toddle off to bring in the NewYear driving a humongous stationary piece of machinery (and, incidentally, to enjoy a Prime Rib potluck dinner at said place of employment!), I want to wish everyone the happiest of New Years. What a year of change it's been.... May 2008 be even better than 2007!! Crabby hopes it will be, too.....

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Published on December 17 2007

...and it's great. :-D
I don’t really have the time to do this correctly, but just as something to do over a milk and cookie before bed: American, have you considered the possibility you might be a f**king idiot?

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Published on December 5 2007

Gore help me. I'm gonna need waaaaay more carbon offsets. The Associated Press: Ecologists Study Efficiency of Divorce
WASHINGTON AP — Divorce can be bad for the environment. In countries around the world divorce rates have been rising, and each time a family dissolves the result is two new households. "A married household actually uses resources more efficiently than a divorced household," said Jianguo Liu, an ecologist at Michigan State University whose analysis of the environmental impact of divorce appears in this weeks online edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Published on December 2 2007

FBIs Gun Ban Listing Swells - washingtonpost.com
Justice officials said the FBIs "Mental Defective File" has ballooned from 175,000 names in June to nearly 400,000, primarily because of additions from California.
(P.S. I used to live there, so it's okay for me to giggle at this.)

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Published on November 15 2007

And take a guess at the title of the Chapter? "Playground Politics for Grownups". Or how about "Put on Your Big Boy Pants, Hugo"? Now I wish I hadn't written the term paper on Containment. Chavez-watching just makes the writing so easy. FOXNews.com - Chavez Demands Spanish King Juan Carlos Apologize for Verbal Slap, Hints Investments Could Be at Risk
CARACAS, Venezuela — President Hugo Chavez is not about to turn the other cheek after a catching a verbal slap from Spanish King Juan Carlos last weekend. The fiery leftist leader of Venezuela all but openly warned Spain that his country doesnt need Spanish investment, and that he expects the king to offer an immediate apology. "The king lost it," Chavez said at a political rally late Tuesday night. "He should say, ... I, the king, confess, I was beside myself, I made a mistake. " The international incident took place last Saturday at a political summit in Chile, during which time the king interrupted a Chavez name-calling rant by leaning across the conference table and yelling, "Why dont you just shut up?" Chavez again spoke about the incident during a news conference Wednesday, repeating his demand for an apology, while offering a veiled threat of retribution. "He disrespected me, and he was laid bare before the world in his arrogance and also his impotence," Chavez told reporters. "We dont want this to become a political crisis."
Impotence? Sigh.... On Page Two of the "I Can Has President?" manual, it clearly states:
"The best way to cause a political crisis is to go for the 'nads."
On Page Three, we read:
"Hugo. Why don't you just shut up?"

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Published on November 4 2007

Hollywood horror show: Writers to strike - CNN.com
LOS ANGELES, California CNN -- Show-business writers will go on strike early Monday after their negotiating team recommended a walkout over royalties that could immediately pinch late-night TV shows. Timely programs like "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" could be among the first affected. The Writers Guild of America board voted unanimously to strike as of 12:01 a.m. Monday 3:01 a.m. ET, officials said.
I haven't been reading very much about this--I didn't even know there was the possibility of a strike until I heard it on the radio last night at work. The newsreader stated that the worst part of a strike is that we could all be watching reruns before the end of the year. (Oh, the horror) I kinda think this won't affect me very much, however. I turned on the tube when I got home this morning, just to see what was happening in the world-- and couldn't figure out at first why the TV was tuned in to ESPN. Then it hit me. I haven't turned the box on since last week's Monday Night Football. I am obviously not holding up my share of the appreciation and advancement of American Culture. L-)

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Published on October 26 2007

I'd always thought of Christopher Hitchens as a great writer, because he pi$$ed me off just as often as he made me nod in agreement. (Okay, so I have a weird definition of "great"). With this piece for Vanity Fair, Hitchens tells us about a great loss he had a small part in inspiring.... and it's...yes... "great".

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Published on October 12 2007

Al Gore, UN Panel share Nobel for Peace - Yahoo News
OSLO, Norway - Former Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.s climate change panel won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for spreading awareness of man-made climate change and laying the foundations for counteracting it. Gore, whose film on global warming, "An Inconvenient Truth," won an Academy Award earlier this year, had been widely tipped to win Fridays prize, which expanded the Norwegian committees interpretation of peacemaking and disarmament efforts that have traditionally been the awards foundations.
I feel a chorus of "Kumbaya" coming on. What the h*** is the Nobel Committee thinking? What flavor Kool-Aid was being served during their deliberations? We have things like this and this going on, and they award a *Peace Prize* to .....I'm just shaking my head here.... Does Gore fit into this group, even in the slightest? • 2006: Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank, the Bangladeshi bank he founded. • 2005: Mohamed ElBaradei, Egypt, and the International Atomic Energy Agency. • 2004: Wangari Maathai, Kenya. • 2003: Shirin Ebadi, Iran. • 2002: Jimmy Carter, United States. • 2001: U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan. • 2000: Kim Dae-jung, South Korea. • 1999: Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders). • 1998: David Trimble and John Hume, Northern Ireland. • 1997: Jody Williams and the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, United States. • 1996: Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo and Jose Ramos-Horta, East Timor. • 1995: Joseph Rotblat, Britain, and the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs. • 1994: Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat; Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres, Israel. • 1993: Nelson Mandela and F.W. de Klerk, South Africa. • 1992: Rigoberta Menchu, Guatemala. • 1991: Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar (also known as Burma). • 1990: Mikhail Gorbachev, Soviet Union. • 1989: The Dalai Lama, Tibet. • 1988: The U.N. Peacekeeping Forces. • 1987: Oscar Arias Sanchez, Costa Rica. • 1986: Elie Wiesel, United States. • 1985: International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, United States. • 1984: Desmond Mpilo Tutu, South Africa. • 1983: Lech Walesa, Poland. • 1982: Alva Myrdal, Sweden; Alfonso Garcia Robles, Mexico. • 1981: Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, or UNHCR. • 1980: Adolfo Perez Esquivel, Argentina. • 1979: Mother Teresa, India. • 1978: Anwar Sadat, Egypt; Menachem Begin, Israel. • 1977: Amnesty International, Britain. • 1976: Betty Williams and Mairead Corrigan, Northern Ireland. • 1975: Andrei Sakharov, Soviet Union. Bet Hillary is a little grumpy this morning, heheheheh.

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