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2009 May 19 — Why Now?
On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
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Fact Checking

While I think that the CIA claims about their briefing of Congress was made up out of whole cloth, people need to stop making unverified claims based on information from their “friends” in the CIA.

Tonight Keith Olbermann claimed that the CIA didn’t coin the term “enhanced interrogation techniques” until 2006. That is a bit odd, as a Google search turned up on the first page:

Dana Priest, Sunday, June 27, 2004, Washington Post, Page AO1: CIA Puts Harsh Tactics On Hold

The “enhanced interrogation techniques,” as the CIA calls them, include feigned drowning and refusal of pain medication for injuries. The tactics have been used to elicit intelligence from al Qaeda leaders such as Abu Zubaida and Khalid Sheik Mohammed.

The “good guys” in the media need to learn how to fact check, like bloggers do. Screw ups like this just help the “bad guys”.

Update: Apparently, based on Digby repeating the claim, it came from TPM Muckraker, and they are the ones who don’t fact check, which is not exactly a surprise to me after their performance in the Democratic primary.

May 19, 2009   2 Comments

It’s Always Something

While we have had too much rain, Central Florida has been in a drought and plagued with numerous wildfires, a couple of dozen 100 acre+ fires at any given time, closing roads, and taking some houses and businesses.

Well, the rains have come, and now there is Central Florida flooding.

It should put out a lot of the fires and will definitely help raise the levels in lakes, and the aquifer, but this will have to continue for a long time before the water shortage is made up.

May 19, 2009   6 Comments

Geek Stuff

The Hubble is back on its own with the service mission generally successful. There were a couple of things that don’t seemed to have been fixed by the new parts, but they are relatively minor.

Let the science and the great photographs resume.

Lots of buzz about what the ABC labeled a 47 million year-old primate skeleton.

What it is is an almost total fossil of a young female mammal that is probably in the line to lemurs and other primates. The problem is all of the people calling it a missing link, and implying things that haven’t been proven. Just because it is a very old fossil, and it obviously shares characteristics with modern primates, doesn’t mean that it is in the chain of creatures that led to humans. It could well belong to a branch that ended. Celebrate it for what it is, not for what some want it to be.

In addition to the almost complete skeleton, there is an impression of its soft tissue that provides a silhouette of what it looked like in life, and it was transitioning to its adult teeth, so there are two types of teeth available for study. It is a very rich source of research materials.

May 19, 2009   7 Comments

The Race Is On

Annette Taddeo [D Miami] is thinking seriously about the Chief Financial Officer’s position and Jeff Atwater [R North Palm Beach], the current Florida Senate President has announced for the job.

There is a cluster of Democrats looking at the Attorney General’s job, but no one has said anything about the Agricultural Commissioner’s job, which is not exactly surprising, as Democrats can only get elected in urban areas because of the redistricting.

To make things confusing, Will McBride [R Orlando] who lost to Cruella de Harris in the 2006 Republican Senate primary is thinking of running for Attorney General.

Alex Sink’s husband, Bill McBride [D Tampa], who ran for governor in 2002, will probably be helping on her campaign.

There is too much name recognition involved in this one, especially among Panhandle Republicans.

May 19, 2009   1 Comment