So Vladimir Putin's thinking must be running something like this:
"I'm president of the largest country in the world. Historically my country is near-impossible to attack, as confirmed by Risk players everywhere. Our country holds key positions in certain U.N. groups, so that the world needs to listen to us. We don't need to answer to the EU, nor are we considered part of Asia. Our longest rivals, the U.S., are bogged down in a military quagmire, which everyone has confirmed is becoming a regional civil war. They may be there for years, and their strength will only be increasingly sapped.
'Meanwhile North Korea is starting to fold to the pressure of the U.N. and U.S., and there's been no reports of suspicious activity in Iran for awhile, the UN has just reached agreements for inspections. The most volatile region in the world is Africa, with three known regions of slaughter in Somalia, the Sudan, and Nigeria. South America? Flouting leaders who are anti-American.
'The time to assert Russian power has never been better."
And so today it is announced that Putin decided to suspend the pact of the 1990 Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty. This means the rest of the parties, Europe, has '150 days' after notification and that Russia will no longer allow 'inspections or exchange data on its deployments'. NATO: displeased.
The CFE has been cited as the single piece of policy that was most beneficial to wrapping up the Cold War. Now Russia has decided that those weapons discussed under the treaty should be unmonitored and, likely, increased: battle tanks, combat aircraft, heavy artillery.
Of course the main player in this will be the U.S. The U.K. has also had difficulties with Russia recently, especially publicized was the death of Litvinenko by radiation poisoning by the KGB. If there is a catalyst, however, it will be seen as the missile base that the U.S. has decided to place near the Russian border. Does anyone think that was a good idea? Probably even Bush is regretting that one, since he's tried to patch things up through talks with Putin already earlier this month.
Since this one seems to be about news of impending doom, a little more cheery stuff on that subject, eh? Might as well get all the bad stuff out of the way, after all.
So in California concerns for global warming are rising. There's many reasons to be concerned in the Golden State, of course, but in particular the wine industry is now beginning to fret. Vineyard operations aren't easy to control in the first place, a lot of the time you do all you can to cultivate the best crop you can, and then sit back for weather to take over.
Weather in California, like everywhere is getting worse. After the citrus industry was hit by a crippling freeze now the vineyards in No Cal are rightfully getting anxious about their vines' reactions to heat. The wine industry pulls in about $45 billion annually, no sum to be sneezed at. And agriculture, whether tropicals shipped to the other 49 states or seasonals sold on the roadside stands, is still a huge backbone of the state's economy.
Luckily we have Schwarzenagger. Schwarzenagger, Schwarzenagger, he's our man! If he can't fix it, no one can!