After approving the latest spending bill, Democrats vowed to continue fighting the president over funding for the war in Iraq.
Muqtada al-Sadr has resurfaced in Iraq after months of speculation that he had left and has ordered his forces to cease fighting other Iraqis.
In response to South Korea launching a new Aegis equipped destroyer, North Korea test fired some guided short-range missiles.
The USS Nimitz and the USS John C Stennis and their support ships have entered the Persian Gulf following the expiration of a UN deadline for Iran to cease uranium enrichment.
Relief for the most needy among us. This past week, Congressman Tim Ryan participated in the Food Stamp Challenge. The Challenge is to live on $3 a day for a week. That amount is what the average food stamp recipient receives.
NYPD surveillance prior to the 2004 GOP convention: a list. In NYC during the GOP convention and wonder whether the police were spying on you. Chances are, they were. Just disclosed documents detail who they where keeping an eye on.
Mental Health Problems Among Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans. Casualty statistics should be more than a body count. Consider the lives ruined by mental illness as a result of combat.
Inside the Digital Dump. Poor Chinese are poisoning themselves trying to strike it rich mining discard electronics for copper and gold.
New process generates hydrogen from aluminum alloy to run engines, fuel cells. If I read this right, we could be looking at using water to fuel hydrogen powered vehicles.
For 2008, Who Isn't a Flip-Flopper?. The Washington Post calls the '08 candidates onto the carpet for Flip-Flopping on both sides of the aisle.
Prewar intelligence foretold Iraq upheaval. Still believe Cheney when he says that we could not have foretold the situation that has developed in Iraq. Our own intelligence people did.
Big area of Antarctica melted in 2005. It was thought that melting in Antarctica was limited to the peninsula. Now scientists think it could be a lot worse.
For ’08 Resumes, Don’t Ask Them to Fill in Blanks Candidates on both sides are dodging questions about questionable episodes in their past. Can the American people get an attention span long enough to demand answers.
Senators Renew Call for Gonzales' Ouster. Two more Republicans have crossed over to asking him to step down.
Book Excerpt: The Assault on Reason. This is Al Gore's latest book and hopefully his platform to a Presidential bid.
Starting something new today. The news goes by faster than I can comment. So, to help apathy.net readers keep up, here are the stories I'm reading today:
Microsoft takes on the free world. Fortune magazine digs into Microsoft's plans to seek patent royalties from users of FOSS software like linux.
Iran warns U.S. over strike threat. Following Dick Cheney's remarks that the U.S. will stop Iran from building Nuclear weapons, Iran's president, Ahmadinejad, threatens retaliation for any American strikes and asks whether the U.S. has overstayed its welcome in the region.
Size matters, so does shape under new postal rates. New postal rates begin today in the U.S. The rates, available at the U.S. Post Office bring some confusion to mailing. No longer will first class mail only be rejected for weight, but also size. While normal sized first-class mail is going up a meager 2 cents, large letters go to 80 cents. A large letter is anything that exceeds any one of these dimensions: 11 1/2" long, 6 1/8" high, 1/4" thick.
Nothing in the news today really strikes my fancy as something to write about. Instead, let me share a link to one of the sites I visit regularly: News Hounds
It is an admittedly biased site focused on exposing the bias of Fox News Channel. Their slogan: We watch Fox so you don't have to.
The unfair and ridiculously unbalanced Fox coverage is held up for ridicule at least ten times a day. It's well worth a read.
Before the fall of the Taliban in 2001, all media in Afghanistan was under state control. Now, as the fighting with the Taliban resumes, efforts are under way in the Afghan parliament to reign in the media once again.
Amidst the wall-to-wall coverage of the Virginia Tech "massacre", president Bush put the Sudanese government on notice that if the United Nation's efforts to bring peace to the Darfur region didn't bring results soon, the United States would impose further sanctions on the Sudan government.
Bush is seeking the cooperation of the Sudanese government to allow U.N. Troops, including 3,000 attach helicopters, into the Darfur region to fight the militias responsible for the ethnic cleansing of non-arabs. He warned that failure to cooperate could lead to action by the U.N. Security Council.
Fearing that children are spending too much time playing online games, the Chinese government has given software vendors in China three months to place curbs on gaming by underage players.
For games that allow players to accumulate points, the games would be required to stop giving players points after three hours of play in a given day.
This policy assumes, of course, that these kids play only one game online.
This does remind me a bit of the policies built into World of Warcraft that encourage players to take a break from the game. In WOW, players who rest get a 100% to experience accumulation proportionate to the time spent not playing. I suspect that Blizzard Entertainment, makers of World of Warcraft, are more concerned about server load than the health of their players, but the policy does achieve the same goal.
One has to wonder if such 'nanny state' kind of policies where the state substitutes its judgment for the judgment of the parents are a good idea. Libertarians would argue that such regulation is unnecessary and would point at Blizzard's initiative as a sign that the market can handle the problem on its own.
In October 2006, a survey conducted by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health determined that the civilian death toll in Iraq since the invasion in 2003 was somewhere north of the 600,000 mark.
The survey was ridiculed from the right and flew in the face of White House estimates closer to 30,000. Even the timing of releasing the survey results one month before the mid-term elections was used to mark the survey as clearly partisan.
Well, recently obtained British government documents reveal that Roy Anderson, chief science advisor to the British Ministry of Defence "described the methods used in the study as 'robust' and 'close to best practice'".
Anderson was not alone in this conclusion. "Another official said it was 'a tried and tested way of measuring mortality in conflict zones'."
A survey conducted by Zogby International found that a whopping 85% of newspaper editors see a bright future ahead for their paper.
That kind of statistic flies in the face of conventional wisdom built up from watching rampant layoffs and loses through-out the industry.
Even more surprising is that 79% welcome the competition from new media in their market.
Perhaps the issue here is local news. Most newspapers I know get their international and national news through syndicates like Reuters and AP. Newspapers, and to a lesser extent local TV news, hold a monopoly on local news. I live in an area with nearly 1 million local residents and I couldn't give you the URL of a single online-only news source for this area.
Maybe editors aren't in denial. Maybe new media can't effectively compete in the local news arena.
On the other hand, like most media, the readers of news papers are the product that newspapers sell to advertisers. Classified ads are an important revenue stream for these papers as well. Can the papers maintain enough circulation to justify their rates? That's the ultimate question.
While the world has paid attention to the Civil War between government forces and UNITA for the greater part of three decades, the separatist movement in Cabinda has raged on.
Angola's economy is dependent on oil exports, more than 50% of which comes from the Cabinda province. Much of the oil production in Cabinda is run by ChevronTexaco and has been since Chevron financed the invasion of the independent province by the Angolan army in 1975.