From the BBC: Quake in Western China Buries Nearly 900 Students, and other stories

From the BBC:


'Hundreds buried' by China quake

Almost 900 students have been buried by collapsed buildings during an earthquake in south-western China, state media reports.

What a horrible start to the day, and to the week.

The BBC article quotes the following statistics for recent quakes in China:


  • March, 2008: 7.2 quake in Xinjiang - damage limited
  • February 2003: 6.8 quake in Xinjiang - at least 94 dead, 200 hurt
  • January 1998: 6.2 quake in rural Hebei - at least 47 dead, 2,000 hurt
  • April 1997: 6.6 quake hits Xinjiang - 9 dead, 60 hurt
  • January 1997: 6.4 quake in Xinjiang - 50 dead, 40 hurt


In other news, US planes carrying aid land in Burma after days spent negotiating with the government, and a US researcher finds a way to kill stowaway plants and animals from marine ballast tanks:


US researchers say they have developed an effective way to kill unwanted plants and animals that hitch a ride in the ballast waters of cargo tankers.

Tests showed that a continuous microwave system was able to remove all marine life within the water tanks.

The UN lists "invasive species" dispersed by ballast water discharges as one of the four main threats to the world's marine ecosystems.

That's all I've got for now -- busy, busy day ahead -- but I'm sure there's a lot more.

Have at it. :)

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House G.O.P. Adopts Change Theme

Hoping to get things moving in a positive direction, House Republicans will on Wednesday begin rolling out their own policy agenda, trying to showcase their differences with Democrats on issues such as health care, the economy, energy and national security.

In a memo to be sent to Republican members today, the leadership hints at a new slogan building on the change message that has already been shown to have political resonance with a public unhappy with the nation’s direction.

It looks like Republicans will counter the Democratic push for change from the years of the Bush administration with their own pledge to deliver, drum roll please, “the change you deserve.” The first element of the party agenda developed over the past few months by the leadership and select party members will focus on family issues.

“Through our “Change You Deserve” message and through our “American Families Agenda,” House Republicans will continue our efforts to speak directly to an American public looking for leaders who will offer real solutions for the challenges they confront every day,” said the memo prepared for lawmakers.

I couldn't resist putting up a comment in this nyt blog. I keep wondering if the word STUPID is written across American foreheads! Let's all give the GOP what they deserve!!!!!

Earthquake coverage on CCTV-1

James fallows is in China, and filed this entry this morning. Interesting read on the variations in coverage between foreign and in-country outlets.

Reports I'm seeing on a few blog cites are saying ~thousands~ feared dead.

It was a big one.

NPR's All Things Considered Hosts Melissa Block and Robert Siegel were in China doing a series to air next week when the Earthquake hit, they were some 60miles away from the epacenter of the quake.

This is the mainsite story page High Toll Feared as Earthquake Jars China that started todays broadcast.

There are a few other reports, at the site page above, but also live coverage as the quake hit and than what they saw.

Melissa Block was in the process of recording an interview when Monday's earthquake hit. She then fled the building and reported on the scene in the city's streets.
Later, she headed to the scene of a collapsed middle school where children had been pulled from the rubble.
Listen: Melissa Block at a shattered school

Listen: Robert Siegel at a crowded hospital

They also had a diary started about the initial reports quickly changed now to their own personal experiances about the quake, Chengdu Diary

Tell the world: My America Doesn't Torture!

"The wise man points to the stars and the fool sees only the finger - and discusses it 24/7 on cable."