Sunday, December 10, 2006

Sunday Article Round-Up

Due to time constraints last weeks' round up was a little meager. This week should do plenty to feed your hungry selves. As I try to do every week, I've rounded up some of the most important and fun stories that you should have read. I do the work and EWB in SD paid for it. Let's get started.

International News
The Iraqis near deal on oil wealth sharing while Iraqi leader criticises Iraq Study Group's report about the Iraq War. He isn't a big fan of troop withdrawals. Should America leave and the current Iraqi government tumble, he'd be the first to swing from the gallows.

The paradise of Fiji has a new government that no one wants as the Fijian coup is renounced by virtually every government in the world.

Business and Economics
I'm confronted with desperate poverty everyday on my walk to work, but it appears I'm not the only one. 12 Million Suburbanites Live in Poverty. Maybe you are too?

The Seminole Indian Tribe is buying the Hard Rock Cafe. This purchase is believed to be an American Indian tribe's first purchase of a major international corporation of its size

Weak dollar makes Opec cut likely. You see, these are inversely related in a downward spiral. Since all oil is priced in US dollars, when the dollar weakens, oil producers get less value for the cash. To make up the difference, they have to drop supply to drive up the price. As they drive up the price, the US economy weakens and brings the dollar down. Oil producers have to cut supply to drive up price to get the value they were getting previously and now we are in a death spiral. :-)

In other happy news, here are the Lump of Coal awards, Part 1 for Wall Street.

And in case you felt capitalism did a good job distributing wealth, note that the Richest 2% of the world own 50% of the wealth.

Domestic Politics
Early Saturday morning the 109th Congress ended. We bid a Farewell to 109th: They Took So Much -- But Boy, Did They Give. Here is a post-mortem on 12 years in power. A mixed-bag really.

I type while smiling! Rumsfeld Bids Farewell To Pentagon.

In the Foley scandal House Republican leaders were negligent in scandal, panel finds. Don't worry, no one will be held responsible. Zebras can't change their stripes after all. If you want, you can read the transcripts of the IM chats here.

The Senate Votes to Approve Sweeping Tax Package and the Obama-Hatch Tithing Bill. The bill will reverse a provision in the bankruptcy bill to allow religious tithing during a consumer's bankruptcy.

Because the Republican Congress couldn't pass 9 of the 11 appropriations bills, the Incoming Democrats face fiscal minefield. The WaPo hopes for a Do-Something Congress to work a 5-day week. The Republicans aren't happy. They liked their Tuesday to mid-Thursday schedule.

In a very bad omen for incoming Democrats, Louisiana Democrat wins House runoff, despite bribery scandal. But TalkingPointsMemo suggests an ingenious solution.

While considering last minute bills, the Republican Congress decided to keep me disenfranchised.

The Iraq Study Group Chairmen Urge Bush to Follow Recommendations, but Bush Appears Cool to Key Points Of Report on Iraq and Kevin Drum is benchmarking the benchmarks. It doesn't look pretty.

Sen Gordon Smith, a moderate Republican from Oregon who has been a supporter of the war in Iraq, said the U.S. military's "tactics have failed" and he "cannot support that anymore." He also said he is at, "the end of my rope when it comes to supporting a policy that has our soldiers patrolling the same streets in the same way, being blown up the same bombs, day after day...That is absurd," he said. "It may even be criminal."

Something that I hope get lots of publicity is the lawsuit by Iraqis and Afghans that claims Rumsfeld ordered torture. We need a public airing of our laundry.

In 2008 news, Sen. Brownback Forms Group to Explore White House Bid and Evan Bayh forms an exploratory committee. A Swelling field signals an expensive '08 run. I've mentioned it before, but the winner for 2008 may need to raise and spend $500,000,000. That's a lot of dough.

Governor Bill Richardson declares his presidential candidacy on FauxNews. Oh wait! No he didn't. Any announcement will be made in January.

In a last gasp measure, Democratic Congresswoman McKinney introduces a bill to impeach Bush. Every time a Democrat mentions the word impeach, they should be sent to Gitmo and waterboarded.

Technology and Space
Kinda cool, Water flowed recently on Mars.

The US plans permanent base on the moon, but NASA can't explain why. Who cares, spend money like we are printing more of it everyday.

7 great tips about how to live 'greener' and with a smaller carbon footprint from Slate.

Is this politics or technology? Iran blocks access to YouTube. They will stand for no dissent, in person or cyberly. Can't have Iranians watching a real life version of the Simpsons intro, now can we? That would certainly be how the Great Satan infiltrates the minds of our youth!

IM'ing divides adults and teens, so if you are over 25 and not IM'ing. Ask a kid what it is and how you can do it. No, you won't go to jail for that request.

Both 'new' and 'old' math fans are wondering if we are teaching Too much math? gurufrisbee, care to weigh in?

Supreme Court might bar race in school diversity plans, but here is a very solid progressive argument for color-blindness. Even a conservative should like it.

Taliban kill 2 teachers and 3 family members bringing to 20 the number of educators slain in attacks this year. I don't know what to do, but that is serious stuff!

For the tourist on your Christmas list, send them to Rome because St Paul's tomb unearthed there.

The International Herald Tribune has a review of The shaping of the Bible exhibit here in DC. It is a very cool exhibit.

Time Magazine has the scoop of the century! God's Inbox (PDF). First, notice God uses a Mac. Second, check out the icons on the desktop and the webpages he has open. Also, can you figure out which major world figures are praying the same thing, even though they want different results?

Evil-minded parishioners making life hell for clergy in the Church of England. Rather interesting look at the sinners that go to church.

What Would Jesus Play? Violent Christian video game set to be Christmas bestseller

60% of Indian men have penises 1.2 - 2 inches shorter than their international brethren. If that's the case, how come there are so many of them? Is it not the size, but what you do with it that matters?

Here are some Ads for post coup government in Fiji if you want to live in a tropical paradise and don't feel like denouncing the coup yourself.

Mariah or Mary Carey to own their own name? Apparently one is a washed up porn star and the other is a washed up pop star. I can't keep them straight.

'Truthiness' Is Named Word of the Year - (noun)
1 : "truth that comes from the gut, not books" (Stephen Colbert, Comedy Central's "The Colbert Report," October 2005)
2 : "the quality of preferring concepts or facts one wishes to be true, rather than concepts or facts known to be true" (American Dialect Society, January 2006)

Breakfast at Tiffany's dress sells for $800,000 and Laura Bush wore the same dress as 3 other women at the Kennedy Center Honors.

Previously written on Page 132
One year ago - MoLak-Jedi wrote a Monday Meditation for the ages, the joys of overcoming the diaper tyranny and lamented childhood prostitution. Mrs. Expat Teacher wrote a letter to the Guardian about Polly Toynbee, I argued that the presidential system is better than the parliamentary system, reviewed Francis Fukuyama's book, "State-Building: Governance and World Order in the 21st Century", and argued for Lieberman over Daily Kos.

Two years ago - I was blogging about the Bishop of London and post-modernism, concerned over Southern Baptists pulling their kids out of public schools, and calling for integrity at the top. Twice.

So what’s the biggest story of the week? What have I missed? What strikes you as funny, interesting or sad? Was this effort worth the hours I spent on it? Let me know in the comments. You'll have to carry a bigger load since gurufrisbee's school district's NetNanny blocks Page 132 and MoLak-Jedi's computer is dead. Help me out here. What's going on in the world that needs some attention?

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