Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
Sense of the Senate
If the Senate finally passes a resolution disapproving the troop surge in Iraq, the measure will take its place alongside such other sense of the Senate resolutions as the one urging that ba seball great "Shoeless" Joe Jackson be "appropriately honored," the one, "encouraging the active engagement of Americans in world affairs," another urging a commemorative stamp for the National 4-H Club's Centennial, yet another urging establishment of a "National Words Can Heal Day." Finally there was the one declaring that the University of Tennessee volunteers are "The new dynasty in collegiate women's basketball." All of these passed unanimously, by the way.
Beef & Global Warming
Switching from beef to tofu burgers may do more to stop global warming than ditching your SUV for a bicycle. According to a recent report from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, America's meat eaters are a major cause of global warming. American meat eaters are responsible for 1.5 more tons of carbon dioxide than vegetarians every year.
Between 1970 and 2002, the annual per capita meat consumption in developing countries has risen from 24 pounds to 64 pounds. Animal rights activists and advocates of vegetarianism are salivating over the implications of the report. According to Noah Mohr of EarthSave International: "Arguably the best way to reduce global warming in our lifetimes is to reduce or eliminate our consumption of animal products."
But University of Chicago researcher Gordon Eshel points out that you don't need to become a strict vegan, just cut down that burger intake from two to one and you've quote, "already made a substantial difference."
A new study indicates that despite all the attention global warming gets, most Americans believe solving the problem is a low priority. Anthony Leiserowitz, a professor of environmental studies at the University of Oregon writes: "Most Americans believe global warming is real but a moderate and distant risk. While they strongly support policies like investing in renewable energy, higher fuel economy standards and international treaties, they strongly oppose carbon taxes on energy sources that put carbon dioxide into the atmosphere."
The professor's conclusions might come as a relief to Cardinal George Pell of Sydney. In a recent op-ed in The Sunday Telegraph, the Catholic cardinal warns of global warming hysteria, saying, "we have been subjected to a lot of nonsense about climate disasters, as some zealots have been presenting extreme scenarios to frighten us." The cardinal finishes his newspaper sermon by reminding readers, "the science is certainly more complicated than the propaganda."
Spying on Lovers
The Islamic government of Malaysia has initiated an unusual program to snoop on unmarried lovers. The state plans to recruit spies from the public to be on the lookout for un-Islamic behavior such as kissing and holding hands.
Government official Datuk Rosol Wahid explains where they will find these volunteer love-snitches: "Some of these 'spies' could be waitresses or even janitors at hotels acting as auxiliary undercover agents for our religious department."
Rosol admits their task will be a difficult one, since most of the cases involve consensual sex. The religious police were criticized last October for mistakenly raiding the apartment of a Christian American couple on the suspicion that they were unmarried Muslims in "close proximity."
—FOX News Channel's Martin Hill contributed to this report.