The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Tropical storm Epsilon

The National Hurricane Center just a few minutes ago released this report:

...TROPICAL STORM EPSILON...THE 26TH NAMED STORM OF THE 2005
   ATLANTIC SEASON...FORMS OVER THE CENTRAL ATLANTIC OCEAN...
 
AT 11 AM AST...1500Z...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM EPSILON WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 31.6 NORTH... LONGITUDE 50.4 WEST OR ABOUT
845 MILES...1360 KM...EAST OF BERMUDA AND ABOUT 1395 MILES...2245
KM... WEST OF THE AZORES ISLANDS.

For those of you keeping score at home, this means we've seen 7 more named storms than the previous record (19, in 1995), and 5 more than the record for all tropical storms and hurricanes in a season (21, in 1933), since we started keeping track in 1851.

Now, the NHC admits the evidence doesn't fully support a link between global warming and storm frequency, but the hypothesis supporting the connection continues to gain evidence. Evidence like, for example, the most intense tropical storm season on record, including the only known tropical cyclone ever to reach Europe (Vince, October 11th).

Aren't you glad the best President we have right decided to make us the only Industrial country to refuse the Kyoto Protocol?

Anne cancelled our J. Crew card

Anne writes:

I told the credit card woman that it was because I was boycotting J. Crew because they sell fur. She actually had the nerve to say, "I can assure you that the fur that we sell comes from reputable breeders and not from animal destruction."
I think that was off-script, huh? I just said, "I think by definition it comes from animal destruction."
I encourage everyone who is getting J. Crew's catalogs to call (800) 562-0258 and ask to be taken off their lists--and be sure to tell them why.

I didn't even know we had a J. Crew card...

California Coastal Commission

The owners of this property in Carmel, Calif., wanted to build a starter castle. The California Coastal Commission generally doesn't allow new building in coastal communities, especially ugly starter castles. So the dude decided to "remodel" his existing home:

Apparently, this fits the definition of "remodeling" in Monterey County, believe it or not. The CCC, however, required him to take 4 m (12.5 ft) off the top of his proposed refit, so it will wind up being only 3 stories tall.

Gotta draw the line somewhere, I guess.

Obama has a sensible suggestion

I'm glad someone agrees with me. :)

From today's Chicago Tribune:

"The president could take the politics out of Iraq once and for all if he would simply go on television and say to the American people: 'Yes, we made mistakes. Yes, there are things that I would have done differently. But now that I'm here, I'm going to work with both Republicans and Democrats to find the most responsible way out,'" [Illinois U.S. Senator Barack] Obama said. "Imagine if he did that, how it would transform the politics of our country."

—Guest blogger Anne

Two sides, one coin

First, Andy Borowitz has a hi-larious report today:

In a ploy designed to put House Democrats on the spot, Republicans in the House of Representatives today insisted upon a floor vote on a new resolution banning the drowning of kittens. While few in the House expected the kitten-drowning resolution to pass, the House GOP leadership hoped that by calling for the floor vote they might force Democrats into an embarrassing position that they would have to explain to their constituents back home during the Thanksgiving recess.

Second, more seriously, Paul Krugman (reg.req.) says it's time to leave Iraq:

The fact is that we're not going to stay in Iraq until we achieve victory, whatever that means in this context. At most, we'll stay until the American military can take no more.
Mr. Bush never asked the nation for the sacrifices - higher taxes, a bigger military and, possibly, a revived draft - that might have made a long-term commitment to Iraq possible. Instead, the war has been fought on borrowed money and borrowed time. And time is running out.

Why not a privacy amendment?

Dan Savage's Op-Ed today (reg.req.) asks a reasonable question:

If the Republicans can propose a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, why can't the Democrats propose a right to privacy amendment? Making this implicit right explicit would forever end the debate about whether there is a right to privacy. And the debate over the bill would force Republicans who opposed it to explain why they don't think Americans deserve a right to privacy - which would alienate not only moderates, but also those libertarian, small-government conservatives who survive only in isolated pockets on the Eastern Seaboard and the American West.

Thanks to Angela Riccetti for this one.