World View: U.S. Military to Air Drop Toxic Mice on Snakes in Guam

This morning's key headlines from
  • Italy's election portends trouble throughout Europe
  • John Kerry says that Americans have the right to be stupid
  • U.S. military to air drop toxic mice on snakes in Guam

Italy's election portends trouble throughout Europe

In Italy's parliamentary elections over the week, angry Italian voters send a clear and unmistakable message to Europe's leaders: That Italians are tired of efforts to raise taxes cut pensions and curb budget deficits, and are tired of taking orders from Germany. 

Voters firmly rejected the austerity measures of Mario Monti. Center-left leader Pier Luigi Bersani got the largest vote, but just a sliver higher than the vote given to Silvio Berlusconi, who promised to end the austerity taxes and refund the taxes already collected, and Beppe Grillo, a standup comedian who wants to reject all austerity demands from Europe. T

he rise of Berlusconi from the dead is particularly disturbing to European leaders, since they blame Berlusconi for causing the financial crisis in Italy in the first place. Monti has called Berlusconi Italy’s "Pied Piper," leading Italians to their doom. 

Italy's rebellion against austerity bodes ill for other European countries that have to go further than Italy, particularly Spain and Greece. The worst may be that since the vote was roughly even split among Bersani (about 31%), Berlusconi(30%) and Grillo (25%), leaving Monti with just 10%, it seems likely that Italy's government will be in ungovernable chaos, and a new election will be required soon. Spiegel and Bloomberg

John Kerry says that Americans have the right to be stupid

John Kerry, the new Secretary of State, is the cockroach who testified to the Senate in 1971 that American soldiers regularly raped people, tortured people, cut off their ears and mutilated people, and were doing these things on a day to day basis. (See "John Kerry and Seymour Hersh trash the armed forces.".) 

In 2006, he vehemently reaffirmed his claim that American soldiers are nothing but rapists and terrorists, and he said: "You know, education -- if you make the most of it, you study hard and you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don't, you get stuck in Iraq."

It's not surprising that Kerry thinks that America soldiers are stupid, in addition to being rapists and terrorists, but now, in a trip through Europe, he's implying that most Americans are stupid: "In America, you have a right to be stupid, if you want to be. And you have a right to be disconnected to somebody else if you want to be. And we tolerate that - we somehow make it through that."

I can only think that whatever room he's in, he's always the stupidest person in the room.

He's been making one gaffe after another in his Europe trip:

  • He refused to back Britain in the dispute over the Falkland Islands.
  • In a speech, he referred to the nonexistent nation of "Kyrzakhstan," apparently confused about Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan.

I've said many times that Hillary Clinton would have been a better president than Barack Obama because she actually knows what's going on in the world, while Obama does not. But replacing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with John Kerry brings Washington stupidity to new heights. Daily Mail (London)

U.S. military to air drop toxic mice on snakes in Guam

The U.S. military plans to air drop tens of thousands of dead mice laced with acetaminophen (Tylenol) onto foliage surrounding Andersen Air Force Base, in order to control the population of the brown tree snake. Acetaminophen is harmless to humans but toxic to the brown tree snake. 

The snakes are natives of Australia, and came to Guam on board military boats after WW II. The native bird population is defenseless against the snake and has wiped out almost all of Guam's native birds, making most of the species extinct. 

The dead mice will be fitted with tiny parachutes, so they'll catch on trees to make them more attractive to the snakes. The fear is that a similar infestation of brown tree snakes to Hawaii would cause over $2 billion in damage per year. 

 The new mouse drop follows a pilot experiment in 2010 that worked well. However, activists from PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) are expressing outrage that snakes will suffer, though hopefully the snakes at least won't get headaches. AP and CNN (9/2010) and Russia Today

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