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2006 January 02 — Why Now?
On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
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The Seven Wonders of the World

As only one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Great Pyramid, still exists, the CBC reports on the efforts of the The New 7 Wonders Foundation to create a new list.

The Foundation, based in Switzerland, has a list of choices and wants people to vote for their favorites via the Internet or telephone. The voting will take place all year. Go and vote for your favorites.

January 2, 2006   Comments Off on The Seven Wonders of the World

In The Pocket of Big Pharma

The Australian opposition is upset that the current government is talking about removing an amendment to the US-Australian Free Trade Agreement that stabilizes drug prices for Australians.

Apparently the US is unhappy that the Australians specifically protected their pricing policies restricting the ability of pharmaceutical companies to dictate prices to patients.

January 2, 2006   Comments Off on In The Pocket of Big Pharma

It Was Legal?

Laura Rosen looked at the Newsweek article about the Shrubbery scrambling to get the Justice Department to sign off on his data mining in March of 2004.

Laura wonders if the leaks to the New York Times came from the Justice Department, rather than the intelligence community. I think her guess is good, as it is almost unknown for anything to be leaked by the people at NSA. NSA is a military staff function and the people who work there don’t hang around with the media or go to Washington parties. The people in the Justice Department have a lot of contact with the media, and this article points to Justice Department sources.

This also points to another problem with the White House talking points: this was apparently the first time the Justice Department had heard of the program. It started after 9/11/01, but no one talked to the Justice Department until March 2004. How can they claim that it was legal if they didn’t ask? This was done without a Justice Department opinion to back it up, and when asked, the Justice Department didn’t go along. This would be the point at which all of the Federal prosecutors got religion and prayed that this never came out, because it would flush all of their cases based on wiretaps down the toilet.

If they knew what they were doing was legal, what was the rush to cover their tracks in an election year? How could a Democratic administration find fault with a “legal” national security program?

I realize that a lot of people are frightened spitless by terrorists, but I live in a hurricane prone area. What are terrorists going to do to me that Mama Nature can’t? The Shrubbery isn’t going to get anything useful from this Poindexter punt and he is violating my right to be left alone.

[Edited for clarity]

January 2, 2006   Comments Off on It Was Legal?