Bush Floats Trial Balloon for Iraq Pullout?

AP reports that in comments made Monday during his brief stop in Iraq, George Bush floated the notion of reducing troops in Iraq.

“Gen. Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker tell me if the kind of success we’re now seeing continues, it will be possible to maintain the same level of security with fewer American forces.”

Bush further clarified his remark by suggesting that any reduction made on his watch will not be of the “cut and run” variety. Bush created new bumper sticker slogans in his speech, equating his pullout with “Strength and Success”, and his opponents’ with “Fear and Failure”.

“Those [force reduction] decisions will be based on a calm assessment by our military commanders on the conditions on the ground, not reaction by Washington politicians to poll results in the media,” said Bush. “In other words, when we begin to draw down troops from Iraq, it will be from a position of strength and success, not from the position of fear and failure.”

This rhetorical strategy is reminiscent of Nixon’s “peace with honor” pullout from Vietnam.

Baccy and quanta

From the book Euphorias and Eurekas: The Oxford Book of Scientific Anecdotes

Abraham Pais, friend, disciple, and biographer of Bohr, recalls the following encounter, which took place in Bohr´s office.

After we had entered, Bohr asked me to sit down and soon started to pace furiously round the oblong table in the centre of the room. He then asked me if I could put down a few sentences as they would emerge during his pacing. It should be explained that, at such sessions, Bohr never had a full sentence ready. He would often dwell on one word, coax it, implore it, to find the continuation. This could go on for many minutes. At that moment, the word was “Einstein”. There was, Bohr almost running around the table and repeating: “Einstein…Einstein…”. It would have been a curious sight for someone not familiar with Bohr. After a little while he walked to the window, gazed out, repeating every now and then: “Einstein…Einstein…” Continue reading

Climate Change definition and stuff

In order to approach a problem, we have to be able to recognize it and define it. Definition means to put limits and to know dimensions.

Here is what the IPCC tells us about Climate Change:

Climate change refers to a statistically significant variation in either the mean state of the climate or in its variability, persisting for an extended period (typically decades or longer). Climate change may be due to natural internal processes or external forcings, or to persistent anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere or in land use.

Note that the Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in its Article 1, defines “climate change” as:

“a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods”.

The UNFCCC thus makes a distinction between “climate change” attributable to human activities altering the atmospheric composition, and “climate variability” attributable to natural causes.

Now, in the link above we can all get familiarized with the different terms and technical words use in this definition.

He’s a uniter!

Looks like W wants to make things easier for Hillary.

Via Think Progress:

In Robert Draper’s book on the Bush presidency, “Dead Certain,” Bush says the goal of his Iraq strategy is to play it out until “October-November.” That is when he hopes the Iraq troop increase will finally show enough results to help him achieve the central goal of his remaining time in office: “To get us in a position where the presidential candidates will be comfortable about sustaining a presence,” and, he said later, “stay longer.”

Commenting at TPZoo

Some of you who have visited here earlier and left comments may discover a change the next time you go to make a comment. Before you comment, you will first need to register with WordPress (if you haven’t already done so).

You will need to provide WordPress with a username (which will be the name your comments appear under) and an e-mail address. Then you should be able to comment here as before.

Sorry if this has caused anyone undue trouble.

UPDATE: Shayne adds: “If you are here from TP you might recognize some of us as ‘friends’. Please let us know, if you feel like it of course, that we’re old friends.”

UPDATE II: Some of our new commenters have also expressed concern about their avatars not showing up on their comments. Please be advised that it can take a while (seems like maybe a day at the most) for your avatar to consistently appear alongside your comments. Someone told me this is probably due to the possibility that WordPress uses multiple servers, which are not all updated at the same time.

Labor Day Memories at the Zoo

(In order to start off a little thread about our Labor Memories, I offer this. And we at the Zoo would like to wish everyone a safe and memorable Labor Day)

My first job was as a weekend dishwasher in the Burton Center at Lynchburg College in 1980. I was 14 years old and I learned to punch a clock early in life. We worked in a dish room around an automated dishwashing system full of steam and mostly unpleasant people. I was one of several who weren’t college students earning their way to a better stature in life. I was a 14 year old townie in a Private College sea of the entitled. Continue reading

Europe views the World – Labor Day Edition

There are two main areas of interest that are covered by European newspapers this morning: Iraq – again – and Hurricane Felix.

The British are now pulling their troops out of Basra. This leads to tensions between Great Britain and the United States, even more so, because British military has harshly criticized the handling of post war Iraq by the Americans. There seem to be only a handful of soldiers left at Basra Airport to train Iraqi troops and watch out for themselves.

Hurricane Felix has developed into a category 5 cyclone within an unbelievably short time. The Hurricane is the second category 5 storm, since the peak of the hurricane season has started, And there are more areas of interest out there. This year’s Hurricane season has started slow, but it is gathering momentum. The claim that the average Hurricane is getting stronger, due to global climate change, may be proven right here. Felix threatens the Caribean. Nicaragua, Honduras and the Yucatan peninsula are in grave danger from this storm.

And here is my favourite story, it comes right out of your President’s mouth and I love the twist that it gets by UK’s Guardian.

In other news, the deplorable conditions, that the people in sweat-shops are required to work for, remind us that labelled clothing comes for a price. And the Times, as always more protective of the upper classes warns investors of harsh times ahead, and seems both fascinated and taken aback by Hillary Clinton.

And, finally, here’s to you Joel Emmanuel Hägglund!

I wish you all a very nice Labor Day!

Happy Labor Day

This year will mark 125 years since the first Labor Day parade was held. In New York City, on September 5, 1882, 10,000 workers marched from City Hall to Union Station. It was no paid holiday, but they did it to honor their fellow workers and to air some grievances with employers. Though more states held these parades over the coming years, it wasn’t until 1894 that Congress established Labor Day as a federal holiday. Unfortunately, it took blood being spilled to get them to do this. Continue reading