Thanks -it didn't turn up in my search.
"Trash it" emptied all but the Time Machine stuff. I had to make space to run a repair program on my Time Machine disk. Removing the TM files removed the -8003 error.
I still didn't solve the hyperactive time machine problem though...
Clearly Snow Leopard has introduced a trash problem. Today was my second Apple Care call this month to resolve the "error code 8003" message. I resisted the proposed "solution" of re-installing the O.S. because of the time it would take and because I had/have no confidence that doing so would permanently address the problem.
So the Apple Care rep suggested I download and install Trash It, which worked. He also acknowledged that Apple needs to fix this.
FWIW, my first call was after I got an error msg trying to remove an old TM backup (and yes, I know, Apple recommends against that). Today's was after I tried to flush an app.