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In Memoriam: Octavia Butler

Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2006 2:48 AM

Science fiction has lost another luminary, writer Octavia Butler.

That's three (Phil "Uncle Owen" Brown, Andreas "G'Kar" Katsulas, and Octavia), matched with another three from television/film, Darrin "Night Stalker" McGavin, Don Knotts, and Dennis Weaver.

Something to lighten the mood, from Defective Yeti. (Thanks to Bruce Schneier.)

Speaking of that port deal, one of those pesky documents that always crops up to hit the Bush Administration in the face has, well, cropped up to hit the Bush Administration in the face.

A Coast Guard report from December questioned the merger and warned that it could not rule out terrorist exploitation of the company's assets.

And yet, a White House spokeswoman assured reporters that, "... at the end of the day, when the process was completed and the transaction was approved, homeland security questions were resolved."

So, somehow, when we've dragged our heels on implementing sensible and necessary security measures in our ports, it all gets wrapped up and shiny in under a month?

The Coast Guard has since spun issued a statement saying the excerpts do not properly reflect the full, classified analysis of the sale, and that, "... DPW's acquisition of P&O, in and of itself, does not pose a significant threat to U.S. assets in ports," in the continental United States.

The problem is that the ports are access points, not just targets. If a dangerous shipment gets through, it's no longer in the port ... it's inside our borders and ready for delivery.

Neither President Bush or Homeland Security have earned sufficient confidence for me to accept their assurances on this matter.

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