At literally the eleventh hour, a.m. Hawaii time, a 12-foot tsunami generated by the massive 8.8 magnitude Chilean earthquake is predicted to strike our seven inhabited isles. First landfall: the Big Island, where 61 people died in 1960 when a tsunami took out Hilo after a magnitude 9.6 Chilean tremblor. Last September, after the devastating Samoan quake, Hawaii harbors and beaches experienced a 2-foot surge that grounded a few boats after a tsunami warning was downgraded to an advisory. No one drowned, even though the surge washed over the breakwater at Waikiki, where small children and non-swimmers sport in normally shallow waters.
This time it’s a full-on warning, and residents of low-lying coastal zones are supposed to leave, except for tourists in high-rise hotels. For tourists, there is “vertical evacuation,” a term I’ve never heard before. It means that guests shouldn’t leave their hotels. Instead, they should go above the third floor, where, they are told, they will be safe.
“If coastal areas are evacuated, visitors in Waikiki would be moved to higher floors in their hotels, rather than moved out of the tourist district, which could cause gridlock,” reports the AP.
Meanwhile, island residents have been driving around like crazy since before dawn, topping off their gas tanks and shopping for 上海419休闲娱乐网
The Kerry-Lieberman (nee Kerry-Graham-Lieberman) bill is set to be introduced tomorrow. Given all the chaos that’s surrounded it for the last few weeks, it’s worth taking a step back and taking a broad look at the current political dynamic and the chances for a successful outcome. Here’s the one-sentence summary: chances for passage are quite slim, but not as slim as generally perceived, and ironically, the path to passage now involves the bill getting stronger, not weaker. Read on.
Will it pass?
This is what everyone keeps asking me. (And everyone keeps asking everyone else.) The smart money, of course, is on No. Generally, predicting the death of major legislation is a smart move when it comes to the U.S. Senate. And after Graham’s bailing and the oil spill, lots and lots of folks are completely convinced that the coalition’s fallen apart and the bill’s dead.
I don’t necessarily disagree that the odds are against passage. But I don’t think the chances are as bad as conventional wisdom now has it — i.e., I don’t think they’re zero. (Wo0t optimism!) Put another way: I think the chances are roughly as good as they’ve ever been in the Senate: low but non-trivial.
All of D.C. is currently engaged in the seemingly intractable project of psychoanalyzing Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). What’s he thinking? What does he want? Is he in or out?
The short answer is, nobody knows for certain. Graham’s exit from the process was probably overdetermined. He was taking tons of heat from his party; his buddy McCain needed cover on immigration; he didn’t think Obama was going to do what’s necessary to push the bill; as a supporter of offshore oil drilling, he thought the BP Gulf oil disaster destroyed his Republican Attractor Beam and scuttled the bill’s chances. There’s also what people in Congressional offices delicately refer to his “personal problem” back home in South Carolina, about which the less said the better.
Long story short, he’s not coming back as a sponsor or champion of the bill. However, most people I’ve talked to think he’ll vote for it if it comes to the floor.
Is there another Republican who will step forward as the public face of the bill, a champion that will stump for, and possibly lure, other Republican votes? Uh … no. There are, however, some Republicans who are expected to vote for the bill if it goes to the floor: Snowe, Collins (unless she totally digs in her heels on her pony bill), Scott Brown, and Lemieux are the top tier, with a few longer shots like Lugar and Voinovich.
Oil spill WTF
The BP Gulf oil disaster has completely scrambled the politics of this stuff. The White House is terrified — scared they’ll be stuck with responsibility; scared their response will be seen as inadequate; and scared (believe it or not) that they’ll be seen as overreacting, shutting down all drilling and raising gas prices. No one in Congress is quite sure where public opinion will come out. And of course the spill isn’t over yet — it could get much worse!
One certain effect is that coastal state drilling opponents, who might have had a little wiggle room to compromise before, now have none. Menendez, Lautenberg, and Bill Nelson absolutely will not vote for a bill with drilling.
The smart thing would be for the bill to sim阿拉爱上海同城对对碰
More than two months after the oil leak began, financial repercussions have reached oyster shuckers, waitstaff, tour boat operators and others struggling to keep their homes and their pets. It’s a terrible feeling of helplessness, watching the oil kill wildlife, and although not everyone can jump in with animal rescue there is a concrete way to help. Consider adopting a pet. Animal Rescue of New Orleans says that with Plaquemines Parish and St. Bernard Parish shelters beyond full because of the oil leak’s economic fallout, people are calling the helpline and begging them to take in pets they can no longer afford to feed.
Some simply leave the animals on the shelter’s doorstep. For every dog or cat that is adopted, there is room for another at the no-kill shelter. ARNO also has a Pet Retention Program that sends a case worker to homes where residents can’t afford food for their pets. The case worker checks on the animals and brings food every week. ARNO was founded after post-Hurricane Katrina to help house thousands of cats and dogs displaced in New Orleans. So上海同城桑拿