Evening Reads: Non-Election News Round-Up

Tonight’s reads will focus on other news events around the world.

Time for the Northeast to get hit again, this time the storm has been named “Athena” by The Weather Channel.

Wintry storm brings new woe to hard-hit Northeast

authorities warned weary residents not to ignore this storm’s dangers.

“You have to prepare for the storm that’s coming in a few hours,” New Jersey Governor Chris Christie told residents. “I’m waiting for the locusts and pestilence next,” he joked, in a reference to Old Testament plagues.

The low-pressure weather system brought wind gusts up to 60 miles per hour and could drop 2 inches to 4 inches of snow on New York City, the National Weather Service said.

Ice pellets hit Long Island and the storm lifted wave heights to nearly 20 feet off Nantucket, Massachusetts, AccuWeather reported.

School districts in Connecticut sent students home early as a precaution and the New York Stock Exchange removed the giant U.S. flag from its facade to protect it from high winds.

A mix of rain and snow fell on parts of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts, causing airport delays.

Airlines canceled more than 1,700 flights, with Newark airport facing the most cancellations, according to tracking service FlightAware.com.

Many folks are still without power, and this new storm in hitting them hard.

“It’s coming up on 10 days with people being freezing in their homes,” said Peter DiPaola, town supervisor of Pelham, north of New York City.

“I lost all my winter clothing in the flood, so I am wearing three layers of things in order to stay somewhat warm and dry,” said Wayne Steinman, a resident of Staten Island, one of the parts of New York City hardest hit by Sandy. “Everything becomes overwhelming.”

Utilities warned that the storm would slow their efforts to restore power to homes and businesses.

“Up until today we have been making some good restoration progress. We’ve had some good restoration weather, but today is certainly an exception,” said John Miksad, senior vice president of electric operations at New York-area utility Consolidated Edison Inc. “We actually pulled back as a result of the weather today but we will be back out there first thing tomorrow morning.”

There was also a large earthquake today, Strong quake off Guatemala kills 39, felt in Mexico City

A strong earthquake off the coast of Guatemala shook buildings in the capital and killed at least 39 people on Wednesday, trapping others under rubble and triggering evacuations as far away as Mexico City.

The 7.4 magnitude quake hit at 10:35 a.m. local time (11:35 EDT). A local fire chief said at least some of the dead were buried under debris in a mountainous region near the Mexican border.

Landslides blocked roads in some areas, authorities said, and about 40 houses were severely damaged.

It was the strongest earthquake to hit Guatemala since a 7.5 magnitude quake in 1976 that claimed more than 20,000 lives.

President Otto Perez said that as many as 100 people were unaccounted for, based on reports from relatives.

“These are preliminary figures and we don’t have them confirmed,” Perez said in Guatemala City. “Our priority is to focus on lives, rescuing people and treating the wounded.”

Okay, now for the man-made disasters: Greece narrowly passes crucial austerity bill

Greece’s Parliament passed a crucial austerity bill early Thursday in vote so close that it left the coalition government reeling from dissent.

The bill, which will further slash pensions and salaries, passed 153-128 in the 300-member Parliament. It came hours after rioters rampaged outside Parliament during an 80,000-strong anti-austerity demonstration, clashing with police who responded with tear gas, stun grenades and water cannons.

Approval of the cuts and tax increases worth €13.5 billion ($17 billion) over two years was a big step for Greek efforts to secure the next installment of its international rescue loans and stave off imminent bankruptcy.

The country’s international creditors have demanded that the bill and the 2013 budget, due to be voted on Sunday, pass before they consider releasing an already delayed €31.5 billion installment from Greece’s €240 billion bailout. Without it, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras says Greece will run out of money on Nov. 16.

“Greece made a big decisive and optimistic step today. A step toward recovery,” Samaras said, adding that he was “very happy” with the result.

Greek parliament narrowly approves €13.5bn austerity package after mass protests – as it happened

A petrol bomb thrown by protesters explodes near riot police in front of parliament during clashes in Athens, Wednesday Nov. 7, 2012.

A petrol bomb thrown by protesters explodes near riot police in front of parliament during clashes in Athens, Wednesday Nov. 7, 2012. Photograph: Dimitri Messinis/AP
Over in Syria, here is the latest according to BBC News – David Cameron meets Syrian refugees as UK begins rebel talks

David Cameron says he is determined to give Syria a brighter future as he met refugees of the conflict at a camp on the Syrian-Jordanian border.

Britain is to begin talks with armed Syrian rebels in a bid to unite the opposition to President Bashar al-Assad, the UK prime minister said.

The discussions are due to take place in Jordan and Turkey.

Visiting the refugee camp on Wednesday, Mr Cameron said the suffering of refugees was “horrendous”.

Up to 500 people a day have been arriving at the Za’atri camp, Mr Cameron was told, some having walked 15 days in order to try and find shelter.

I want to end this post with a video, I don’t know if it is “real” or not, but it sure is funny…and I think we all need a laugh.

It starts at 1:09, and it involves a bank robbery…

Now that isn’t just luck, that is plain dumb.

This is an open thread!

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39 Comments on “Evening Reads: Non-Election News Round-Up”

  1. RalphB says:

    This is a 180 for Boehner since yesterday. It’s almost like an election happened or something.

    WAPO: Boehner opens door to ‘new revenue’ to curb debt

    Quickly pivoting the political conversation from President Obama’s reelection to Washington’s looming budget battles, House Speaker John A. Boehner on Wednesday offered a potential path to compromise, saying Republicans are “willing to accept new revenue” to tame the soaring national debt and avert an ugly battle over the approaching “fiscal cliff.”

    With Obama’s decisive electoral victory and Republicans’ hold on the House, with a slightly smaller majority, Boehner (R-Ohio) said Tuesday’s election amounted to a plea from voters for the parties to lay down their weapons of the past two years and “do what’s best for our country.”

    • ecocatwoman says:

      I heard more of what Boehner said on NPR this afternoon. The R’s are willing to consider additional revenue dependent upon where it comes from along with cuts dependent upon what is cut. It sounded to me as if he saying the same thing as before, just phrased in a less confrontational, more “civil” set of words.

      • ecocatwoman says:

        And in the Senate, here’s a link that indicates McConnell “congratulates” the president on his re-election: http://blogs.courier-journal.com/politics/2012/11/07/senate-minority-leader-mitch-mcconnell-congratulates-president-barack-obama-on-his-victory/

        Personally it sounds more like a challenge or a threat to me than a congratulatory message:

        “Now it’s time for the president to propose solutions that actually have a chance of passing the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and a closely-divided Senate, step up to the plate on the challenges of the moment, and deliver in a way that he did not in his first four years in office.

        “To the extent he wants to move to the political center, which is where the work gets done in a divided government, we’ll be there to meet him half way.

        “That begins by proposing a way for both parties to work together in avoiding the ‘fiscal cliff’ without harming a weak and fragile economy, and when that is behind us work with us to reform the tax code and our broken entitlement system. Republicans are eager to hear the president’s proposals on these and many other pressing issues going forward and to do the work the people sent us here to do.”

        Gee, and I thought McConnell was sent to the Senate to insure Pres Obama was a one term president. The work of the people? That certainly hasn’t been on this schmuck’s agenda for the past 4 years. Obstruction, obstruction & even more of the same has been his daily business.

      • They are all assholes, I just hope Obama stays strong in finding ways to get the job done, and not give in to them.

  2. ecocatwoman says:

    Must see TV just happened! Rachel Maddow is a Warrior Queen. She just did the most incredible opening segment evah. Check out her site & watch the video & then watch it again. She kicked Fox’s balls into their throats!

  3. Hey, this is funny, h/t truthdig

  4. dakinikat says:

    Since when do Snow Storms get names?

  5. ecocatwoman says:

    Hey guys, Florida is still hanging in there. No decision yet. Shall we take another trip to SCOTUS?

    • RalphB says:

      You know, Mason-Dixon was completely spectacularly wrong in their FL polling while PPP nailed it. Brad Coker at Mason-DIxon beclowned himself.

    • RalphB says:

      PPP says that Obama was about as close in Georgia as Romney was in Michigan and PA. :-)

  6. RalphB says:

    I love this scientific method.

    PublicPolicyPolling ‏@ppppolls
    BTW our likely voter screen is hang up if you’re not going to vote. Don’t need a PhD to come up with that but it seems to work

    • ecocatwoman says:

      Wow, I’m impressed. Actual rocket science in action. O’Donnell listed a ranking of the polls. Forgive my aged memory, but I think he said PPP was at the top for accuracy. There were a bunch scrunched together at #15.

      • RalphB says:

        PPP tied with itself in 2 categories for #1. Nat Silver is on the Daily Show tonight.

        • dakinikat says:

          Those are the folks I followed … and you thought my calm was just a result of my buddhist practice … I’m so glad the real math nerds are vindicated.

      • RalphB says:

        PPP did great. Even the PollTracker averages missed FL but PPP called it right. They missed NC by less than 0.5%. There may be some luck there but you gotta give them credit.

  7. Wow, there is a lot of emotional turmoil on Facebook. People left and right making statements. But one in particular I have to share, from a buddy of mine back in High School, a big GOP fan.

    Life is beautiful no matter what it throws at you. We are ALL in it together, Ds and Rs.

    And from another friend, who I grew up with from the time we were born:

    To all my Republican friends, relax, you still control the house.
    Thanks to Gridlock nothing changes.
    To all my Democrat friends, come down from your euphoria and see above.

    Yup, too true.

  8. One more funny before I go to sleep:

    Night all!

  9. ecocatwoman says:

    Damn, tonight is fun. First Rachel & now Jon. The actual liberal media is highlighting the self immolation of Faux News & their pet pundits.. I’m loving every minute of it. Icing on that cake we got last night with so many wonderful victories.

  10. NW Luna says:

    http://seattletimes.com/text/2019631536.html

    A magnitude 6.3 earthquake has struck off the west coast of Canada but no damages have been reported and no tsunami warning has been issued.

    Natural Resources Canada said the tremor occurred Wednesday night off Vancouver Island in the Pacific ocean, 85 miles (137 kilometers) southwest of Port Alice, British Columbia.

    The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the quake was not expected to generate a tsunami.

    There was an earthquake Oct 28 off the west coast of BC. Hope our area of the Pacific Ring of Fire isn’t getting ready to have a big one.

  11. RalphB says:

    Apparently the Romney people were folling themselves and/or their big supporters right to the end.

    Tiger Beat on the Potomac: Romneyworld reckoning begins

  12. RalphB says:

    Rmoney had a few web issues.

    balloon-juics: Putting the Dressage Horse Before the Cart