Yesterday in Kennebunkport, Maine, President Bush managed to tip over a Segway while attempting to ride it -- despite the fact that the recently invented motorized scooters are equipped with tilt sensors and five high-tech gyroscopes, which are supposed to prevent them from tipping over. So how did Bush manage to nearly fall flat on his face? After seeing photos of the gaffe today, I tried to find out by speaking to a number of Segway enthusiasts.
On Tuesday voters in Columbia, Mo., rejected a decriminalization measure on marijuana by roughly 60 percent to 40 percent. The fact that the statute failed was hardly surprising; voters in other states defeated similar measures last year. What was unusual was the appearance of a high-ranking White House official in Columbia before the vote on the initiative, which would have allowed patients using medical marijuana to carry up to 35 grams of the drug with no penalty and make others caught carrying the same amount pay a municipal fine.
JERUSALEM -- On Monday last week in a cramped Jerusalem convenience store, politics was the topic of the morning. And I didn't have to stay long to realize that things were over for Amram Mitzna, the Labor Party's candidate for prime minister in tomorrow's elections. "Mitzna? Hu pashut loser," laughed a scraggly looking man making sandwiches, employing an English word I had not heard used before by working-class Israelis.
JERUSALEM -- As checkpoint experiences go, the one at Beit Hanina in East Jerusalem is an easy one. Relatively speaking, anyway. For 45 minutes one recent morning, I breathed the gas fumes as the line of vehicles inched forward. Aside from an Arab selling coffee in plastic cups to the drivers, there was little action. The school children in uniforms in the car behind me fidgeted; their parents looked exhausted. I watched some Israeli soldiers take the keys from a few drivers of the omnipresent white van-taxis. (One soldier kept calling a particular driver a "liar" in Hebrew, but I couldn't make out what the driver was or was not lying about.) Muddy taxis streamed in, dropping off workers who travel daily to Tel Aviv for coveted jobs with Israeli employers.
Where is the Environmental Protection Agency's 2002 Report on Light-Duty
Automotive Technology and Fuel Economy Trends when we need it most? True, it's not the sexiest of reports, and when it reliably appears each September, it invariably gets lost amid the snowdrifts of paper created by
Washington's daily bound-binding output. But with a war -- which will no doubt have an effect on oil supply -- looming in Iraq, the report should have taken on added significance this year. And the fact that it hasn't appeared at all may be a story in and of itself.