Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
Monday we told you that the European Union considers flatulence from cows and sheep to be a grave threat to the planet because of its contribution to global warming. Now the U.N.'s climate change panel says rice farming is a main cause of rising methane emissions.
A molecule of methane is 21-times more potent than a molecule of carbon dioxide as a heat trapping gas. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says that while carbon dioxide represents 70 percent of the warming potential in the atmosphere — methane is at 23 percent and rising.
But more than two billion people rely on rice as a dietary staple — and one of the authors of the U.N. report acknowledges that people in the developing world have to think about food production before they worry about climate mitigation.
Hug and Kiss
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been accused of indecency for a hug and a kiss on the hand of an elderly woman who was one of his schoolteachers. The hard-line Islamic newspaper Hezbollah ran a front-page story and wrote that the indecency would have grave consequences and broke Sharia law. The woman wore thick gloves and a headscarf and there was no skin contact. But Sharia law forbids a man to have any physical contact with a woman to whom he is not related.
This isn't the first time the Iranian president has been in hot water with hardliners. He was criticized heavily for his unsuccessful attempt to allow women to attend soccer matches.
The process of defining exactly what constitutes "fast food" can be many things — but here in Washington — it is most assuredly not fast. The District of Columbia government has been at it for eight months — and still has not come up with a suitable definition.
It seems some neighborhoods in D.C. want to freeze out fast food establishments — but need the city to come up with a definition first. And the government and private industry can't even agree on using the term "fast food" anymore. It seems that phrase is — as the kids say — "so yesterday."
A representative of the Metropolitan Washington Restaurant Association says the current lexicon is "quick-serve" — which apparently does not apply to city government.
The Gaia Napa Valley Hotel & Spa wants to become California's first certified "green" hotel — meaning it is friendly to the environment. Bloomberg reports the facility is equipped with waterless urinals, solar lighting and recycled paper.
It also is doing away with one staple of hotel rooms all across the world — the Gideon Bible. It seems that the effort to be green has led the hotel to move the Bible out of the nightstand drawer — replacing it on the bureau will be a copy of Al Gore's global warming book — "An Inconvenient Truth."
—FOX News Channel's Martin Hill contributed to this report.