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Sunday, January 6, 2013
Volume 6, No. 2
HAPPY 2013 FROM THE SHORES OF THE SALISH SEA
Hi again from the shores of the Salish Sea. Well, I hope you had a good New Year. It was very quiet and reflective here. I enjoy a good party and especially entertaining at home but on some holidays ~ sometimes ~ I really prefer to be alone or with very, very special company, reflecting on the significance of the celebration quietly, somberly, soberly and privately.
I also believe that how one leaves the old year and enters the next are a good indication of how the next cycle around the sun will go. I left 2012 sober and arrived in that condition, well rested except for a very contagious cold that was also a factor in why I did not party hearty this season.
In looking beyond the shores of the SalishSea, I notice that Argentina wants the Falkland Islands back. And this time, it doesn’t look like she’s fooling around. Her president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, has written an open letter to British Prime Minister David Cameron “urging” his government to relinquish control. The outcome of this should be interesting. My money’s on the angry Argentine lady.
My home and native land seems to have come up with an interesting way to keep the manufacturers of semi-automatic weapons happy, even while banning them domestically. Yep, ship them off to another country and let them deal with the problems resulting. In this case, it’s Columbia, a place that needs more weapons of considerable destruction about as much as General George Armstrong Custer needed more of Chief Sitting Bull’s people. NOT one of your better ideas, guys.
Here’s an annual ritual which makes just about as much sense to me as voluntarily bailing out of a perfectly good airplane or jumping from a bridge into a deep canyon hoping the bungee cords don’t break. It’s also another behavior which convinces me that profound stupidness is nature’s way of trimming the herd, as it were.
I’m very relieved to hear that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is going to be okay. She’s one of my heroines, as it were, and I’ll be sorry to see her go, even though I think John Kerry will be an able replacement. Interviews I’ve read and watched suggest that Ms Clinton needs some time out of the spotlight. She loves this country as profoundly as anyone who has ever watched the fog roll in off the Potomac, though, and I’m certain her life of public service isn’t finished.
So, it’s been a fun year so far. I’m profoundly convinced the best is yet to come. Stay warm, stay dry and stay well, then, eh?
IN OTHER NEWS
What have we got to look forward to in the year ahead? The Atlantic Cities’ Urban Wonk, Kaid Benfield, gives us five stories to watch in 2013.
One of the supreme ironies of politics is that dog and pony shows occasionally backfire and actually accomplish something. This latest pachyderm and jackass dysfunctional bickering and brinksmanship on the banks of the Potomac may just have produced, according to some experts, the best tax code since 1979.
When I first read the headline “Senate Approves Denali Pipeline,” my eco stress alarm started screaming loud enough to be heard in the next county. The subhead, “Environmentalists supported bill” made me wonder for a second what planet I was on. As it turns out, this is one of those rare but marvelous examples of why it’s not a good idea to be a purist or a fanatic about most things. Or to stress out over a headline designed to get one’s attention in the first place.
WORLD NEWS SHORTS
India: The Unspeakable Truth About Rape In India, India Gang Rape Case: Murder Charges Filed Against 5 In New Delhi, Rape Incites Women to Fight Culture in India, In India’s ‘Rape Capital’ Delhi, Women Turn To Self-Defense, India Rape Case: Woman Jumps Off Moving Train To Escape Molesters In Bihar, Sushilkumar Shinde, India’s Home Minister, Calls For Rape Crackdown
International: 12 “Foreign” Stories from 2012 Worth Revisiting
Japan: New High for Tuna at Tokyo Fish Sale
Middle East: In Shift, Israel Lets Building Materials Into Gaza
US: FDA Offers Broad New Rules to Fight Food Contamination, 155,000 Jobs Added in December – Jobless Rate Is Steady at 7.8%, Pinnacles National Monument Shall Become a National Park, Yellowstone River Oil Spill: Delayed Response From Exxon Made Matters Worse
SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, NATURE AND EXPLORATION
It looks like our species’ search for humanity on other planets could take a while longer than even the most learned of scientists have thought. Apparently there are billions of planets out there which could support “sentient” life. My hunch is that “they” are going to find us before we found them. I sure hope they’re a lot kinder to us than the extra-continentals who discovered the Western Hemisphere. I’d hate to see that kind of poetic justice encompass the planet.
Well, befitting its role as benefactor of all life in the solar system, Old Sol apparently ushered in the New Year with some pyrotechnics of its own. One of America’s solar-watching satellites caught it all on film as a spectacular solar flare leaped from the sun’s surface.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is legendary for turning out stellar alumni. Here’s one who has created an American map based on the 2010 census with a dot for every person in the US.
THE GREEN AGENDA
A new study reveals that people at the low end of the obesity scale may live just as long and longer than some who are within their body mass index (BMI). For more on this one, please go here. To compute your BMI, please go here.
The health virtues of a tree-hugger mentality have been known and touted by the holistic and naturopathic communities for a long time. A recent study now confirms that this mindset and culture ~ in the Northwest, where there’s still lots of clean air and water ~ also produces a bumper crop of centenarians, people who live to be at least one hundred years old.
Since I’m not into promoting the abuse of alcohol, I’m a bit reluctant to recommend these seven foods to eat which can mitigate the impacts of over-imbibing.
ON THE CANCER FRONT
As the estimated 12 million cancer survivors in America and millions others around the world know, it’s not just about beating cancer. It’s also about life after that’s been done.
RESOURCES AND RELATED LINKS:
BEST OF THIS WEEK’S NET MEDIA
Washington State’s minimum wage went up on New Years Day to $9.19 an hour. That’s two dollars an hour higher than the federal equivalent.
Grey’s Anatomy costar Patrick Dempsey now owns Tully’s Coffee. He outbid Starbucks for it and said his company plans to keep the Tully’s name. He also said in a television interview that he’s a real fan of Seattle, has lobbied the film industry to do more shooting here, and will continue to do so. So, hello, Mr. Dempsey. Welcome to the ‘hood.
Komo 4 News (ABC)
King 5 News (NBC)
ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL
YOU GUYS THINK I MAKE THIS STUFF UP
And then there is this tricycle which has attached to it a “house” that one or two people could actually live in. Slap a solar or wind powered electric motor on this pup and you’ve got one of the “greenest” mobile homes on the planet.
A FINAL WORLD
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