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The Republican candidates for the presidency debated at the Ronald Reagan Library in California. Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas said that the day Roe v. Wade was repealed would be “a glorious day of human liberty and freedom” and that the current tax system “ought to be taken behind a barn and killed with a dull ax”; Senator John McCain of Arizona claimed that he would “follow [Osama bin Laden] to the gates of hell”; TexasCongressman Ron Paul said that not going to war in Iraq would have been “conservative,” because “itâ??s a Republican, itâ??s a pro-American, it follows the Founding Fathers. And besides, it follows the Constitution.” CaliforniaCongressman Duncan Hunter took responsibility for the border fence in San Diego. “Itâ??s a double fence,” he said. “Itâ??s not that little straggly fence you see on CNN with everybody getting over it.” “No one on this stage,” said former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, “probably knows Hillary Clinton better than I do,” to which former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani replied: “Oh my!” Collectively, the candidates invoked Reagan’s name nearly 20 times.NY TimesIt was announced that Reagan’sdiaries would be published. “Getting shot,” he wrote in 1981, “hurts.”BBCnews.comHillary Clinton said at a fund-raiser that her campaign would be similar to Harriet Tubman going back to free more slaves,NY Daily Newsand Congressman John Shimkus (R., Ill.) said that pulling out of Iraq would be like the Cardinals leaving the field in the 15th inning to let the Cubs win.Chicago TribuneFormer Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who is a Mormon, declared that his favorite books were Battlefield Earth and the Bible.New York TimesIsraelis were demanding that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert resign due to his handling of the 2006 war with Hezbollah;ReutersBritish Prime Minister Tony Blair announced that he will announce his resignation next week;BBCnews.comand Nicolas Sarkozy, the conservative son of a Hungarian immigrant, was elected president of France.BBCnews.com
Iran’stelecommunications ministry proclaimed that it will begin filtering immoral messages sent by cell phones,Reuters via eweek.comand police in Tehran forbade barbers from giving men Western style haircuts or plucking their eyebrows.ReutersThe U.N. Refugee Agency reported that more than 36,000 Afghans had been deported from Iran since late April.BBCnews.comThe U.S. Army tightened its rules concerning blogging by soldiers,Reuters via CNN.comand Senator Patrick Leahy (D., Vt.) issued a subpoena to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales for emails from Karl Rove regarding the U.S. attorney firings.CNN.comPresident Bush vetoed an Iraq spending bill that included a timetable for troop withdrawal and threatened to use his third veto on a bill that would expand the legal definition of hate crime to include violence based on gender or sexuality.BBCnews.comAP via MSNBC.comOfficials from more than 50 countries gathered in Egypt and issued a five-year “International Compact” aimed at stabilizing Iraq.The Daily Star EgyptThe Iraqi interior ministry claimed that the head of Al Qaeda in Iraq had been killed,BBCnews.comand Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr called on Iraqis to paint “magnificent tableaux” on barrier walls that “depict the ugliness and terrorist nature of the occupier, and the sedition, car bombings, blood and the like he has brought upon Iraqis.”NYTimes.comThe U.S. State Department announced that 40 percent more people died from terror attacks in 2006 than in the year before,BBCnews.comand American officials denied reports of a plan to require entry visas for British citizens of Pakistani origin.Guardian UnlimitedTwenty thousand Pakistanis rallied in Islamabad to protest the suspension of Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry by President Gen. Pervez Musharraf. “The dictatorial system of government and the concept of concentration of power is now ended,” Chaudhry said. “All these are bitter lessons of history.”AP via SignonSanDiego.com
Sony apologized and admitted that it might have been “inappropriate” to promote a new videogame based on Greek mythology by holding a launch party in London featuring topless serving girls and guests eating offal from the stomach of a decapitated goat.thisislondon.co.ukTommy Lee was reportedly buying the manmade island of “Greece” in Dubai’s “The World” project for his ex-wife Pamela Anderson, who has accused him in the past of domestic abuse and giving her hepatitis C. Mirror.co.ukBritons were enjoying a new reality television series called “Fat Teens Can’t Hunt” in which ten overweight teenagers were sent to Australia’s outback to live and eat with Aboriginal communities.ReutersAn Irish teenager, who has been told by doctors that her baby will not survive more than a few days after birth, appeared in the High Court in Dublin to apply for the right to travel to Britain for an abortion.BBCnews.comScottish scientists were developing a pill that will simultaneously boost women’s sex drive and decrease their weight. When the pill was given to monkeys, said the scientists, females displayed their feelings via “rump presentation and tail wagging” and males through tongue-flicking and eyebrow-raising.BBCnews.comA 68-year-old grandmother in England was the runner-up for “txt laureate” for writing a love poem to her husband. “O hart tht sorz,” she wrote, “My luv adorz, He mAks me liv, He mAks me giv, Myslf 2 him, As my luv porz.”The RegisterGuests at a wedding in Patna, India, decided that the groom had arrived too drunk and had the bride marry his brother instead,Reutersand a farmer in eastern India beheaded one of his workers with a sword for failing to milk his cows.ReutersFour thousand Filipina mothers in Manila tried to break the world record for simultaneous breastfeeding.BBCnews.com
More from Chantal Clarke:
On a Friday evening in January, a thousand people at the annual California Native Plant Society conference in San Jose settled down to a banquet and a keynote speech delivered by an environmental historian named Jared Farmer. His chosen topic was the eucalyptus tree and its role in Californiaâs ecology and history. The address did not go well. Eucalyptus is not a native plant but a Victorian import from Australia. In the eyes of those gathered at the San Jose DoubleTree, it qualified as âinvasive,â âexotic,â âalienâ â all dirty words to this crowd, who were therefore convinced that the tree was dangerously combustible, unfriendly to birds, and excessively greedy in competing for water with honest native species.
In his speech, Farmer dutifully highlighted these ugly attributes, but also quoted a few more positive remarks made by others over the years. This was a reckless move. A reference to the tree as âindigenously Californianâ elicited an abusive roar, as did an observation that without the aromatic import, the state would be like a âhome without its mother.â Thereafter, the mild-mannered speaker was continually interrupted by boos, groans, and exasperated gasps. Only when he mentioned the longhorn beetle, a species imported (illegally) from Australia during the 1990s with the specific aim of killing the eucalyptus, did he earn a resounding cheer.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A tourism company in Australia announced a service that will allow users to take the âworldâs biggest selfies,â and a Texas man accidentally killed himself while trying to pose for a selfie with a handgun.
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âShelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.â