Amazon: Last Man Standing

Amazon.com's (AMZN, news, msgs)
sales story has been one of tremendous success. It pioneered the online
retail experience, and in so doing saw sales soar to nearly $7 billion
in just 10 years of existence. Over the last four years, sales have
surged by 150%, a gain not shared by many in the retail community, at
least not by companies of Amazon's size. Take Federated Department Stores (FD, news, msgs), for example. Its net sales have dropped to $15.7 billion from $17.8 billion, or by 12%, over the last four years. - Robert Walberg

Russians Believe America Stole Their Lake

Officials in Nizhegorodskaya region, on the Volga river east of Moscow,
said water in the lake might have been sucked down into an underground
water-course or cave system, but some villagers had more sinister
explanations.

“I am thinking, well, America has finally got to us,” said one old woman, as she sat on the ground outside her house. - Moscow News

An Epidemic of Wealth

The ranks of Americans worth $1 million grew 21% in 2004; the $5 million club grew even faster. - CNN

It appears that America is being overrun with rich people. Surely our government can do something to stop this insanity. If only we had a Carter administration tax code in place to stop people from breaking the millionaire's glass ceiling.

No Bush Ban on Stem Cell Research

There never was a Bush ban on stem cell research. Actually the president increased federal spending on stem cell research, as he appears to enjoy doing for practically any purpose. So, why does everyone keep saying the president banned stem cell research, or that he blocked funding? It sounds much more dramatic to say Bush killed Superman than "Bush refused to back federal spending on new lines of embryonic stem cells."

Iran Won't Seek Nuclear Weapons

Iran has renewed its pledge not to seek nuclear weapons during talks in Geneva with European Union countries. - BBC

Doesn't that settle it? Iran has said again it has no intention to seek nuclear weapons. What's the difference between this case and pre-invasion Iraq?

Saddam Hussein said he wasn't producing WMD, and as it turns out it appears he really wasn't. Sure, his son went on national television (Saddam controlled) and called on martyrs to attack the US and its citizens. And, he had been known to contract assassination attempts on a US president. But everyone now knows he never posed a threat to the US or its allies. Logically, Iran doesn't either. Sure, they scream "Death to Israel, Death to the US," at every legislative session. And it is true that the government is controlled by religious zealots that openly aspire to wipe the earth clean of infidels and Jews. But, just because they have a nuclear program doesn't mean they intend to use it for mass murder. Why doesn't the world just leave them alone?

No Embryos Destroyed in Latest Stem Cell Experiment

Those apposed to destroying human embryos for science have been long asking people to look to the proven alternatives. There are many good sources of stem cells, and many don't involve the risks associated with cloning. Umbilical chords have been successfully used to treat blood cancer patients. Now, a marrow sourced stem cell is making news.

They are using adult stem cells extracted from patients' bone marrow to generate new tissue in damaged areas. - BBC

Silencing the Bloggers

It won't help anyone, big business or big media, to try thuggery to silence the bloggers. But, that won't stop them from trying.

Quite frankly, I think bloggers like the blogfather himself tend to be a tad too self-important. However, Mr. Reynolds made a good point three years ago (something he reminds us of on his article about dirty tricks against bloggers) when he said:

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