This one was only 18

Every US death in this war was a person with a life, all too often too short, that was sacrificed on the altar of George W Bush's cupidity, greed and lies. And because George W Bush is
a coward for whom not admitting a mistake is more important than a soldiers life, there will be more deaths. Some will be people like Army Spc. Christopher D. Kube.

He was 18.

He was a newlywed.

He was killed on July 14, eight months after he arrived in Iraq on a deployment that made him nervous from the start, as one fellow soldier remembered. Back at his home station, Fort Carson, Colorado, he drew attention for being so young, so short, so slight and so cheerful.

Dear Phil Berger:

"Do we really believe government spending creates prosperity?" Senate Minority Leader Phil Berger asked.

After coming up on the short end of the NC Senate budget negotiations, this quote of yours is flying around the interTubes like news of a Britney Spears wax job. I read it a dozen times this morning, and I feel compelled respond from the heart.

From where I sit in the peanut gallery, you and the likes of Dallas Woodhouse at NC AFP are WAY too trigger-happy in the prosperity department. You think having a picture of Ronnie Raygun on a website stands for something worthwhile. You think prosperity itself trumps every other possible motivation human beings can have, and so you push the greed agenda like there's no tomorrow. And in doing so, you actually increase the odds that there may in fact be no tomorrow in which you and yours can enjoy all that prosperity you're working for.

I'm not saying prosperity is bad. Of course not. I've worked my ass off for 30 years in pursuit of the good life, and I've been luckier than I deserve. But I know plenty of others who have worked just as much and are still stuck between a rock and a hard place. They live from hand to mouth, and the slightest wobble throws them under the bus. They get the flu and miss a few days of work and BOOM, they're screwed with high-interest debt and crappy credit ratings. They get a flat tire or a blown head gasket and BOOM, they're screwed again. They'd trade in their cars for decent mass transit in a heartbeat. They don't have the money to send their kids to college, and so the cycle continues.

Does Mother Nature Hold The Key To Harnessing The Sun's Energy?

My nephew is about to enter his Senior year at the University of Florida, where he is (somehow) managing a double-major in Mechanical Engineering and Aeronautical Engineering (apparently it skips around in my family).

For the last few years I've been trying to nudge him into nanotechnology, partially because I believe it will have applications in all areas of science, but also because of the potential for more effective Solar technology as well as energy efficiency. He says he's been thinking about it, which in nephew-speak means, "I wish you'd quit bugging me about this, Uncle Steve." ;)

Somebody call a Waaaaahmbulance for Jay Morrison

Jay Morrison, the man who instigated the anti-transit tax movement in Charlotte has a bit of a past according to the Charlotte Observer. This morning we in Charlotte were greeted with the news that Morrison was a party in 17 lawsuits he filed against his creditors and if the Observer is giving the full story, these are some stinky lawsuits.

Steve Harrison and Victoria Cherrie of the CharO tell it this way:

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