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People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it. Welcome to From On High.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Scraping The Bottom Of The Barrel

You know the folks at the Roanoke Times are hard-pressed to find something good to write about our part-time governor when they come up with silly crap like this:
Keeping it honest

One way Virginia's governor can make government effective -- or not -- is through his power of appointment. In this, Gov. Mark Warner has excelled. Ever the technocrat, he showed his penchant for expertise over ideology this week when he named 13 scientists to an advisory committee that will oversee the state's crime lab.


To their credit, lawmakers voted this year to make Virginia only the second state to create a scientific review panel to give stringent professional oversight for work crucial to the fair administration of justice. Warner's appointments assure honest scrutiny. (link)
Governor Warner appoints scientists to a scientific committee and the editorial staff does a group hug and declares his effort to be praiseworthy. Wait until they find out he also appointed ...

... accountants to the Board of Accountancy and ...

... attorneys to the Attorney General's Office and ...

... women to the Council on the Status of Women (and you wondered where that massive tax increase went) and ...

... educators to the Department of Education and ...

... voters to the State Board of Elections and ...

... old people to the Department for the Aging and ...

... weird effete types to the Virginia Commission for the Arts ...

and ...

Pinheads and The Bigger Picture

I've avoided up to now any mention of that pitiable wretch camped out in front of the Bush ranch in Crawford, Texas who lost her son to a terrorist bomb in Iraq. She has proven herself to be a simpleton and really doesn't deserve my time. Her son deserves better, but I'm still waiting for some journalist to take time out from his Cindy Sheehan anal exam to tell us about his life; his attitudes; his heroism. He, after all, is without question an American hero cursed by having a mother who routinely spits on his grave as she continues to denounce the actions of the United States military in Iraq - his actions in Iraq. Selfless, grand, envy-of-the-civilized-world actions. American actions.*

If I were to criticize the handling of the war, it would only be in making the point that George W Bush hasn't done an effective job of getting Americans to understand that our involvment in Iraq is but a battle - one of many ongoing - in our global war on terror. The President will frequently discuss that part of the war being fought in Iraq and will routinely address the progress of the war on radical Islam, but he doesn't effectively link the two - as he must if he wants to maintain support here at home.

James Taranto knows this too. And makes the point in this entry in Best of the Web (requires subscription):

According to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, "the moral authority of parents who bury children killed in Iraq is absolute." So we now have it on absolute moral authority that America is a cancer, that Iraqis were better off under Saddam Hussein, and that Israel must be destroyed? The question is somewhat facetious, of course; Dowd is not known for thinking through the implications of the things she writes.

Yet thousands of American parents have lost children in Iraq, and thousands more in, among other places, Afghanistan, Germany, Iran, Israel, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, New York, Pennsylvania, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Tanzania, Virginia and Yemen, either fighting Islamist terrorism or as a result of the failure to fight Islamist terrorism with sufficient determination. Although these thousands of parents doubtless have a wide range of opinions on the Iraq war and other subjects, we'd venture to say that not many--especially among those whose children were in the military--agree with Cindy Sheehan. (link)

Unfortunately, many more young Americans are going to die before this war is brought to a successful end. Many more. In battles that will be fought across the globe. With Islamic extremists who are intent on killing off the entire western world.

Cindy Sheehan is to be pitied in part because her son gave his life willingly for a cause his own mother cannot comprehend. She somehow has it in her frail mind that if American forces exit Iraq - retreat - peace would once again reign in all the land.

So foolish. So naive. So wrong.

* The most profound explanation of our intentions when we send American soldiers into foreign conflicts was provided by former Secretary of State Colin Powell:

"When all those conflicts were over, what did we do? Did we stay and conquer? Did we say, 'Okay, we defeated Germany. Now Germany belongs to us? We defeated Japan, so Japan belongs to us'? No. What did we do? We built them up. We gave them democratic systems which they have embraced totally to their soul. And did we ask for any land? No. The only land we ever asked for was enough land to bury our dead. And that is the kind of nation we are.

Kaine And The Secret Decoder Ring

Behan over at Commonwealth Conservative has an amusing post and accompanying link regarding a gubernatorial contender and state budget reform here.

I had to chuckle. You'd do well to read the whole thing.

Mark Twain once wrote:
Wit is the sudden marriage of ideas which before their union were not perceived to have any relation.

Micro-Brew At Its Best

Mr. Minor over at SW Virginia Law Blog, my favorite online read for breaking legal news, makes mention here of Microfestivus 2005, featuring "micro and craft" brewed beers going on today over in Roanoke. I'll not be able to attend (my sister and her husband are here visiting; he's a Lutheran minister and this is my chance to get right with the Lord) but the festival sounds like it will be great fun.

If you don't find beer there to your taste, may I suggest you try the offerings brewed by my brother-in-law over here.

Not that I ever touch the stuff.

Divorce, American Style

I wonder if the pro-abortion crowd realizes yet that they are being thrown over the side of the boat by liberals who want to win elections.

When the ultra-leftist New York Times has two op/ed columns the same day denouncing a NARAL tactic that, in the past, was always their standard M.O. and accepted practice, you know the times they are a'changin'.

First there's this editorial:
A Bad Ad

Under pressure, Naral Pro-Choice America has withdrawn a cheesy 30-second TV spot unfairly linking Judge John Roberts Jr. with abortion clinic violence. But the episode's sour taste lingers, and it can only make it harder to get senators to pay proper attention during the Supreme Court confirmation process to legitimate concerns about Judge Roberts's approach to issues of personal privacy and reproductive freedom.

In withdrawing the ad, Naral's president, Nancy Keenan, said that the controversy sparked by the ad had "become a distraction" from the group's effort to educate the public. Lamentably, her statement stopped short of apologizing to Judge Roberts, and to Americans of all ideological stripes who are hoping for a confirmation process at once vigorous and informed. If Naral wants to regain credibility, it should start there. (
link)
Then there's this column from John Tierney:
Pro-Choice but Anti-Naral
By
JOHN TIERNEY

My position on abortion has been, as politicians put it, evolving. I was once pro-choice and a contributor to Naral. Now I'm pro-choice but anti-Naral.

The group has a genius for alienating potential allies ... (
link)
I'm going to try to avoid asking Mr. Tierney how it is he thinks his position has evolved when all he's done is turn against a pressure group; I'm sure he has a valid explanation.

The more significant point is his line, "The group has a genius for alienating potential allies ..."

Potential allies.

What is going on here is a not-so-subtle shift of the left away from the traditional - and strident - "abortion is to be championed" position to one deemed more appropriate for winning elections.

NARAL and Planned Parenthood should be very very afraid.