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Sunday, December 03, 2006

Sunday RoundUp

Opening up Alaska's Bristol Bay and expanding drilling off Florida's coast — a goal of House Republicans before losing power to Democrats — would amount to "a last minute giveaway of public lands as an early Christmas present to the big oil companies."

Famed paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey is giving no quarter to powerful evangelical church leaders who are pressing Kenya's national museum to relegate to a back room its world-famous collection of hominid fossils showing the evolution of humans' early ancestors.

So, a Muslim is coming to the United States House of Representatives and he wants to be sworn into office with his hand on a Koran and not on a Holy Bible. Some conservatives have decided this may well be the end of American civilization. One columnist writes, "He should not be allowed to do so -- not because of any American hostility to the Koran, but because the act undermines American civilization." Some people's election loss grief counseling isn't going well.

President Bush and his top advisors fanned out across the troubled Middle East over the last week to showcase their diplomatic initiatives to restore strained relationships with traditional allies and forge new ones with leaders in Iraq. Instead, Bush's journey found friends both old and new near a state of panic. Mideast leaders expressed soaring concern over upheavals across the region that the United States helped ignite through its invasion of Iraq and push for democracy — and fear that the Bush administration may make things worse.

Banksy, the wryly subversive British street artist, has added a new famous name to his list of the lampooned: Michael Jackson. A new drawing by the Bristol native shows the ersatz King of Pop dressed as an old woman and kneeling with a candy cane in hand, opening the door of a woodland cottage in invitation for a young boy and girl waiting outside. The riff on Jackson in the predator's role from the Hansel and Gretel fairy tale is one of four works by Banksy on display at an exhibition space called Santa's Ghetto that opened Friday in central London, according to the Times of London.

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