Saturday, September 29, 2007
Friday, September 28, 2007
So much for 'compassionate conservatism'. Pres. Bush threatens a veto of a children's health insurance bill. That wild liberal Orrin Hatch has vowed to vote to override the veto.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
-His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Monday, September 24, 2007
- Thomas Merton
from Passion For Peace
Friday, September 21, 2007
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Assuming you read at average speed, by the time you get to the bottom of this column, the war in Iraq will have cost the United States another $760,000. More than $4 million of U.S. taxpayers' money ebbed away in the 18 minutes it took George W. Bush to explain to his country and the world last week why the war he ordered would last well beyond his presidency.
During an eight-hour working day, U.S. tax dollars spent in the battle zones of Iraq total $112 million. These figures are extrapolated from a report by the Congressional Research Service (CSR), a bipartisan agency which provides research and analysis for the U.S. Congress. It put the war's average cost in 2007 at around $10 billion a month.
That translates into $333 million a day, $14 million an hour, $231,000 a minute and $3,850 a second. Even for the world's richest country, this is serious money.Read whole article here.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
The people in the military are starting to clue in. They suffer, and the general public does nothing.
All those "Support our Troops" magnets you see on the back of cars- empty verbiage.
Repeat deployments, extended tours add uncertainty to hardship of service
Their stories put a human face on stark statistics showing that the U.S. military — a small force by historical standards — is stretched thin after more than four years in Iraq and six in Afghanistan. Repeated deployments of active military members and reservists and diminishing "dwell times" between postings to the war zone have taxed soldiers and taken a growing toll on the home front.
"Families are truly exhausted," says Patricia Barron, who runs youth programs for the National Military Families Association. "They are starting to feel the stresses of separation more acutely."
Indeed, the whole approach to providing manpower for this conflict differs from that of the Vietnam War, from 1964-1975. Then, a much larger active military — 8.7 million troops — was bolstered by a draft that added 1.7 million more soldiers to the ranks, according to the Veterans of Foreign Wars. More than 640,000 of the draftees served in Vietnam, constituting about one-quarter of the total U.S. force there, the VFW said.
But the draft ended in 1973, and the active military now numbers about 1.4 million, according to the Department of Defense.
In order to sustain troop levels in what has become a much more prolonged conflict than originally anticipated, the military has relied on repeated deployments, and a far heavier use of "weekend warriors." More than 434,000 National Guard and Reserve members have been deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan, about one-quarter of them more than once, according to the Pentagon. In comparison, about 340,000 Guard and Reserve troops were deployed during the Vietnam conflict.The suicide rate among soldiers hit a 26-year high in 2006, according to a Pentagon report released in August
The report said the numbers suggest a correlation between suicide and the number of days served in Iraq or Afghanistan, though failed personal relationships and legal and financial problems also were identified as factors.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
from Passion For Peace
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Friday, September 14, 2007
Snow, 52, announced his retirement from the position two weeks ago and finishes his tenure today. Though he continues to battle a recurrence of colon cancer, Snow has maintained that his resignation was not health-related. He said he wanted to spend more time with his family and hinted that the press secretary's $168,000 salary was too low...
Doesn't it break your heart? Snow can't get by on $168,000. Of couse the average salary in the US is less than $50,000.
Mr. President, if you're reading, I can get by on $168,000. But, of course I'd stand at the mic and tell the truth. I suppose you may consider that a liability.
Suppose Fox News is willing to throw a million plus at some ordinary Joes to save them from the money "running out"?
Doubt it. More likely they'll oppose any government policy that may help the common man, and save their charity for the six figure folks like Snow.
I'm sure Snow will be back at the "fair and balanced" network in no time. Replenishing his coffers with what passes for journalism at Faux News.
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Gray, Mora and five other soldiers died Monday when their truck overturned near the Iraqi capital, U.S. officials said.
Gray and Mora were among seven soldiers, mostly sergeants, who wrote the op-ed piece that appeared in the Times on August 19. It called the prospects of U.S. success "far-fetched" and said the progress being reported was being "offset by failures elsewhere."
"Four years into our occupation, we have failed on every promise, while we have substituted Baath Party tyranny with a tyranny of Islamist, militia and criminal violence," they wrote. "When the primary preoccupation of average Iraqis is when and how they are likely to be killed, we can hardly feel smug as we hand out care packages."
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
The International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) security think-tank said global warming would hit crop yields and water availability everywhere, causing great human suffering and leading to regional strife.
Scientists say global average temperatures will rise by between 1.8 and 4.0 degrees Celsius this century due to burning fossil fuels for power and transport.
The IISS report said the effects would cause a host of problems including rising sea levels, forced migration, freak storms, droughts, floods, extinctions, wildfires, disease epidemics, crop failures and famines.
He said he would immediately begin to pull out troops engaged in combat operations at a pace of one or two brigades every month, to be completed by the end of 2008.
Obama said he would call for a new constitutional convention in Iraq, convened with the United Nations, which would not adjourn until Iraq's leaders reach a new agreement on political reconciliation.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
About 10 million people out of the 27 million population of Assam state have been affected by flooding after rains in the past few days. More than 2,000 villages have been completely submerged.
The second spell of flooding in less than a month has also spread across parts of Bangladesh, forcing around a million from their homes and leaving thousands stranded. About 850 people have died in floods there since late July.
About 3 million people in Assam are living in temporary shelters, government buildings and schools, officials said.
Around 1 million acres of farmland have been flooded.