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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, September 30, 2006

Axis Of Evil

How uncomfortable the Democrats and their allies in the mainstream media must feel when they hear their arguments being made by a man who was responsible for the deaths of thousands of innocent Americans on 9/11 and who has vowed to slaughter our children and grandchildren.

How uncomfortable ...
Al-Zawahri: Bush a Liar in War on Terror
By Bassem Assem Mroue, Associated Press Writer


CAIRO, Egypt (AP) -- Osama bin Laden's deputy described President Bush as a "deceitful liar" in a new video statement and called a U.N. resolution to send peacekeepers into Sudan's war-torn Darfur region a "Crusader plan," imploring the Muslims of Darfur to defend themselves.

"Can't you be honest at least once in your life, and admit that you are a deceitful liar who intentionally deceived your nation when you drove them to war in Iraq?" al-Qaida No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahri said. (
link)

Sound like anyone we know?

You Have The Money. Use It Wisely.

Governor Kaine and his Democratic pals in the legislature - and at the Washington Post - are now decrying the collapse of transportation budget talks in Richmond and the impending collapse of all our roads and bridges here in the commonwealth:

Va. Road Repairs Expected To Stall
Leaders Predict No Help Until 2008

Fiddlesticks.

From the Report Of The Joint Legislative Audit And Review Commission "Review of State Spending: December 2005 Update"

Over the past decade, Virginia's operating budget has increased by 80%, growing from $16.3 billion in FY 1996 to $29.3 billion in FY 2005.

In addition, state coffers have been overwhelmed by a $2 billion surplus.

You all have the money. You just need your priorities told to you.

And the brave Republicans in the House of Delegates are going to keep pounding that message until it sinks in.

We Got Us Another Tourism Center!

If we could grow jobs like we grow tourism centers, we'd be in high cotton around here. Chilhowie has the newest and prettiest:
Tourism center opens
Dan Kegley, Staff, Smyth County News


Final preparations continued at 3:30 Thursday afternoon but when the ribbon was cut about three hours later, the community was treated to a collection of professional exhibits of local history at the H.L. Bonham Regional Development and Tourism Center.

Awaiting identification of its precise role in tourism development since the Bonham heirs donated the house for tourism purposes to the Town of Chilhowie four years ago, the property and its operations will transfer this fall to the new county-wide tourism association from its parent organization, the Chamber of Commerce of Smyth County. (
link)

The precise role of the center and whether it conflicts with another regional tourism center just up the interstate in Wytheville and with a state tourism center just down the interstate in Bristol aren't known.

They Want Us To Lose

On that NIE:

Charleston Daily Mail: Win or lose?
Abandoning Iraqis now would simply hand jihadists a victory

The National Intelligence Estimate’s statement that Iraq has become a “cause celebre” for jihadists pleased those who question whether Iraq should be part of the war on terrorism.

The report also makes clear that leaving Iraq now would be a disaster. (link)

· "Iraq has become a “cause celebre” for jihadists."

· " ... leaving Iraq now would be a disaster."

Two reasons why the Democrats are cheering.

Terror Suspects and Their Rights

You'll not find terrorists covered in the Bill of Rights. I checked.

In fact, you may be surprised to hear that no non-Americans are protected in the first ten amendments to the Constitution that we hold dear. They protect US.

But to leftist one-worlders, there is to be no distinction:
The Charleston Gazette: Un-American

Before leaving for election recess, Republicans in Congress passed a bill sought by President Bush to limit the rights of terror suspects. (link)
"Limit the rights of terror suspects." Rights that are enumerated nowhere on this planet.

To illustrate, by the way, the point that the Democratic Party is now not just opposed to the war in Iraq but the War On Terror as a whole (this bill had nothing to do with Iraq; it only addressed the issue of interrogation methods of suspected terrorists), 33 of 45 Democrats in the Senate voted against the establishment of interrogation guidelines, preferring to stay on the sidelines and disparage all our efforts.

With friends like these ...

When News Stories Collide

As told by ABC News Friday and repeated here:

Civilian Says Va. Guardsmen Fled Convoy
By Michael Felberbaum, Associated Press

Richmond, Va. (AP) - A Virginia National Guard unit came under scrutiny after a video seemed to show troops abandoning a civilian truck convoy during an attack by Iraqi insurgents, resulting in the executions of three unarmed drivers.

The video, obtained by ABC News, shows a military personnel carrier racing away after insurgents open fire and disable four Halliburton trucks last September near Balad, Iraq. (
link)
The real story:

Convoy leader details Iraqi ambush
By Peter Bacque, Richmond Times-Dispatch Staff Writer

As many as 100 to 150 Iraqi insurgents attacked a supply convoy escorted by Virginia Army National Guard soldiers last year, the convoy commander estimates.

"It was a total, 100 percent complex ambush attack," said Staff Sgt. Marty Herron of Ivanhoe in Southwest Virginia.

Iraqi insurgents were coming from everywhere, Herron, 39, said yesterday.

Hand grenades, gunfire from AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades rained down on the convoy from rooftops, garages, bushes and culverts along the narrow, quarter-mile-long "kill zone," Herron said.

The fire was so heavy that the Virginia gunners were firing back with automatic weapons in both hands, he said.

Three American contractor drivers died and three others were wounded in the attack on Sept. 20, 2005, as was one of Herron's soldiers from the Guard's 1173rd Transportation Company.

"It was hell, really," said the veteran of Desert Storm, Somalia and Bosnia.

ABC News obtained a videotape showing Herron's Humvee racing away after insurgents opened fire and disabled four Halliburton trucks.

"They held off the insurgents the whole time ..." (
link)

ABC's response?
"Others can decide whether there was or wasn't appropriate action taken [by the Guard soldiers]. Clearly the contractor we interviewed did not feel that way."
So the ABC story should have been about a contractor's feelings rather than about alleged cowardice on the part of American soldiers fighting to protect a civilian contractor's life.

But no.

Shameful. Typical.

It's Bush's Fault

George Bush and Big Oil are behind this.

Oh, wait.
Experts Predict Lower Winter Gas Costs
By H. Josef Hebert, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Natural gas producers predicted Thursday that consumers will see lower prices this winter because there's plenty of natural gas already in storage and more is being produced. (
link)
We can thank Bill Clinton for this ...

OK. You Go First.

Did you watch the rerun of Steven Spielberg's Jaws on television yesterday? In it, there's a scene in which the mayor of Amity, after a couple of area residents have been viciously ripped apart and eaten by a shark, says that it is now okay to go back into the water because some yokel had found and killed one of the savage predators.

You know that storyline.

The experts are telling us that the spinach is safe to eat again ...

Spinach Called Safe
By Bloomberg News and William Yardley


Consumers can now resume buying and eating fresh spinach, the Food and Drug Administration said. The tainted spinach all came from Natural Selection Foods, a vegetable grower and processor in San Juan Bautista, Calif., said David Acheson, chief medical officer for the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition of the F.D.A. All brands that were affected by an outbreak of E. coli that killed one person and sickened 188 in the United States and Canada have been recalled ... (
link)

We all know what happened to Captain Quint.

Cue the Jaws theme music. BUMP bump BUMP bump BUMP bump ...

Friday, September 29, 2006

More On That Transportation Crisis

It would be a whole lot easier and far more effective for VDOT and our illustrious political elite here in the commonwealth to make the case that we need a whole lot more tax dollars for transportation if we weren't currently devoting transportation dollars to silly and wasteful projects like this:
Cedar Bluff gets grant for park/trail phase
Angie Arms, Richlands News-Press/Clinch Valley News

Cedar Bluff is one step closer to having a trail around a portion of the town by contributing their 20 percent of a matching grant from the Virginia Department of Transportation.


The town's contribution comes in the form of a property purchase that will be utilized in later phases of the overall project.

The property purchased is located on Old Kentucky Turnpike on the opposite side of Indian Creek from the Turnpike.

Phase I of the trail project received $50,000 in VDOT grant money last year with an additional $233,000 allotted this year... (
link)

So our highway funding is in such direful need of cash that we can blow a quarter of a million transportation dollars on a walking trail in Tazewell County.

When hell freezes over ...

I Have a Bone To Pick

I drove through this mess yesterday in North Carolina:
Hail piling up, trees falling down
TriCities.com Staff Reports


The sudden onset of severe stormy weather has led to some extremely hazardous conditions in the Tri-Cities area, especially for drivers.

One to one half inches of marble to golf ball-sized hail has reportedly fallen in ... (
link)
Look, we all want to shield our $40,000 automobiles from hail damage when we suddenly start to get pelted as we're driving down the interstate. And many of us try our best to squeeze under the overpass until the conflagration ends.

But when there is no longer a shoulder to pull off to, you don't have the right to stop in the middle of the highway - under the overpass - and block traffic just to prevent a ding or two in your Mercedez (license number LJD ___).

It's a good thing I'm not often heavily armed when I'm out conducting business ...

We're Not Your Normal Folk

We here in Bland County celebrate those things in life the rest of you have a tendency to overlook or disparage:

Hazardous waste dump day coming up
Bland County Messenger


Y'all are invited to come celebrate with us. Bring your own spent fuel rods and high-level radioactive plutonium by-products.

It Ends As It Began

The state of Virginia needs to devote more money to transportation. Republican delegates know it. Senate Democrats know it. Governor Kaine knows it.

The House of Delegates is not going to vote for another tax increase to pay for transportation expenditures. Senators knows it. The Governor knows it.

So we are where we all knew we would be:
Limited session hits the end of the road
The Republican-run General Assembly cut short the session on transportation two days early. Finger pointing has begun.
By Michael Sluss, The Roanoke Times


RICHMOND -- Virginia lawmakers abandoned a last-ditch effort to craft a statewide transportation funding package Thursday, with the Senate and House of Delegates hopelessly divided over how to generate money for long-term road and transit needs.

The failure to find common ground leaves little new money in the budget for transportation. And it left legislators and Gov. Tim Kaine pointing fingers as a long and unproductive fight over the issue sputtered to a close. (
link)
The article goes on to provide the usual whining from Governor Kaine and his supporters about impending doom and the end of the world as we know it. And about those sunsabitchas in the House.

What isn't mentioned is the fact that the state is awash in money right now (a surplus estimated to be as high as $2 billion) as a result of former Governor Mark Warner's massive tax increase of just a few years ago and that this same bunch of reprobates that bemoans the lack of funds to address transportation needs managed to increase spending on everything else by 20% in the last session of the legislature alone, money that, if they truly considered our transportation needs to be that dire, could have been devoted to meeting our transportation needs.

But no.

So the special session is ending in failure. Who'da guessed.

You Wanted Him. You Got Him.

The Republican Party campaigned heavily for Senator Lincoln Chafee's re-election in the recent Rhode Island primary. The party campaigned even harder against his Republican opponent, which surprised and disgusted more than a few party faithful.

So what did the gurus at GOP-Central get for their efforts? A senator who sides with the Democrats. Again. Somebody explain this:
Bolton's post left in limbo
By David R. Sands, The Washington Times


The deadlocked Senate Foreign Relations Committee will not take up the confirmation vote for combative U.N. Ambassador John R. Bolton before Congress adjourns this weekend for the fall elections, committee officials confirmed yesterday.

Committee Chairman Richard G. Lugar, Indiana Republican, told the Associated Press yesterday that Sen. Lincoln Chafee, Rhode Island Republican, remains a holdout on the nomination. The liberal Mr. Chafee, who faces a tough re-election fight in November, has said he would not vote on Mr. Bolton until the administration addressed his concerns about general policy in the Middle East. (
link)
Better a Democrat than this ...

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Quote Of The Day

It is unfair to condemn Clinton with 20/20 hindsight, but history is unfair. Like James Buchanan and the Civil War or Herbert Hoover and the Depression, Clinton will take the blame for inaction while a crisis mounted. True, George W. Bush didn't do much better during his first eight months in office, but he had the remainder of his terms to make up for it. As someone who is obsessed with his own legacy, Clinton knows all this deep down, which is why he snapped in that interview. In a way you have to feel sorry for the guy.

James Taranto, Best of the Web Today, September 27, 2006

Treasure!

I've always known there to be treasures hidden in the library. Every library. This is evidence:

Frost poem found at U.Va.
Grad student discovers handwritten work hidden in uncataloged papers
By Carlos Santos, Richmond Times-Dispatch Staff Writer


CHARLOTTESVILLE -- A U.Va. graduate student, poking through a box of uncataloged material at the school's library, has found an unpublished poem by Robert Frost.

The poem, "War Thoughts at Home," was handwritten by Frost in a copy of "North of Boston," his second collection of poetry. The poem is signed by Frost and dated January 1918.

Robert Stilling, an English graduate student at the University of Virginia, recently unearthed the 35-line poem. It is a tribute to Edward Thomas, an Englishman who was killed in France in 1917 during World War I. Thomas, a good friend of the poet, was carrying a volume of Frost's poetry when he died at the front.

The poem tells of a woman who looks out the window of an old house to see blue jays in a rage, fighting their own war:

She thinks of a winter camp

Where soldiers for France are made.

She draws down the window shade

And it glows with an early lamp.

Now, the rediscovered work will be published in the fall issue of the Virginia Quarterly Review, which will be available next week. (link)

Exciting stuff.

Those Crazy Statistics

When you have everyone employable employed, you have zero unemployment. When you have zero employable, you have zero unemployment.

Martinsville and Henry County are on their way to to zero unemployment.

That's good. And bad.

Changes in jobs numbers are minor but meaningful
Ray Reed, The Roanoke Times

There were some notable changes in Western Virginia, including Martinsville's drop from 12.2 percent a year ago to 7.7 percent this August.

Martinsville's improved figures can be attributed to two factors, Mezger said.

Some new companies have brought jobs into the area.

Also, the labor force for Martinsville and Henry County is down 900 people since August of last year, to 30,384. That means people either found jobs outside the area, or they may have moved ... (
link)

If these 900 workers each had a wife/husband and two children, the area's population declined by 3,600 people in just one year.

Improved figures? Only to those not out looking for a U-Haul right now.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Are You All Getting This?

What's the most pressing issue of the day here in Virginia? It appears that we need to know whether Jim Webb uttered the word nigger at any point in time in his life.

For the love of God.
Webb 'never directed slur at anyone'
But Senate candidate can't say he has never used the racial epithet

By Kiran Krishnamurthy, Richmond Times-Dispatch

FREDERICKSBURG -- Democrat Jim Webb was unable to categorically say yesterday that he has never used the n-word, though the U.S. Senate challenger said he has never directed a racial slur at anyone. (
link)
So what does Webb plan to do about illegal immigration? With each passing day, it becomes ever more obvious, we'll never find out.

How shameful.

Delegates Throw Down The Gauntlet

Did anyone really expect the struggle between those politicians here in the commonwealth who see their primary responsibility as being to sustain the government and our courageous Republican delegates who are looking out for the already overburdened taxpayers to come down to something different in the special session of the legislature?

If you did, you were wrong. The delegates hold firm:
House tries again with no-tax-increase roads plan
By Michael Sluss, The Roanoke Times


RICHMOND — A key House of Delegates committee today once again ruled out tax increases to boost transportation funding, setting the stage for another clash with the Senate during a four-day General Assembly session that begins Wednesday.

The House Finance Committee rejected a Senate-sponsored plan to increase the gasoline tax and other levies to pump new dollars into the state’s road and transit programs. The panel also rejected a hotly debated proposal to increase taxes for transportation upgrades in the congested regions of Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads. (
link)
A number of analysts saw an opportunity for compromise on that second point, and there may yet be one. But the delegates at this point have turned toward their counterparts in the senate and are shouting, "What part of NO do you not understand?"

I love these guys.

The Sago Mine Tragedy Continues

News comes this morning that sorrow and overwhelming feelings of loss were too great for two of the miners who were involved in the Sago disaster:
Two Sago Mine workers commit suicide
By Vicki Smith, Associated Press Writer


MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) -- Two miners whose jobs included watching for safety hazards inside the Sago Mine before the deadly explosion last January committed suicide in the past month.

Neither man had been blamed for the disaster that killed 12 of their comrades, and neither one's family has definitively linked the suicides to the accident. But those who knew the men say there is little doubt the tragedy haunted them.

John Nelson Boni, whose job that day was to maintain water pumps, shot himself Saturday at his home in Volga, State Police said.

William Lee "Flea" Chisolm, the 47-year-old dispatcher responsible for monitoring carbon monoxide alarms and communicating with crews underground that morning, shot himself at his Belington home Aug. 29, authorities said Tuesday. (
link)
So sad.

Surrender!

The Democrats' strategy for capitulation to the terrorists is emerging:

CHARLIE'S PLAN TO STAB THE TROOPS
New York Post editorial

September 27, 2006 -- Should the Democrats seize control of Congress in November, the first order of business will be to stab American troops now fighting the War on Terror squarely in the back.


How do we know this?

Why, Charlie Rangel told us so.

The Manhattan Democrat is in line to take over as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, which drafts the government's general spending outlines - and says he'd use that position to cut off funding for the war.

"You've got to be able to pay for the war, don't you?" Rangel told the The Hill, a newspaper that covers Congress.

What a terrific message to be sending Osama & Co.

It's an engraved invitation to kill as many Americans as possible between now and Nov. 7, in hopes that Charlie Rangel and the rest of the anti-war nogoodniks carry the day at the polls.

What about the tens of thousands of soldiers and Marines now in harm's way? Rangel's leaving them twisting slowly in the wind: Why take risks in the War on Terror today, if Charlie and his friends intend to sabotage the effort tomorrow? (
link)

We are now beyond the point of trying to score political points. Lives are at stake. Lives - thousands of them - have been lost. These cowards are prepared to abandon the field to the Islamist terrorists and the bodies of our brave soldiers to the buzzards.

We went down this road in '75. The Democrats - in morbid glee - took us there.

Not this time. Never again.

Hillary: Ever The Loyal Bride

Hillary Clinton proves herself to be as fanciful as her husband is when it comes to imagining "what might have been." The boy Clinton said on Sunday that he did everything he possibly could to rid the world of terrorists (even though the number he took out in his eight years as Commander-in-Chief could be counted on one hand). Yesterday Hillary, ever the loyal bride, came to his defense:

Clinton Defends Husband’s Tack, Adding That All Democrats Should Take a Hint
By Raymond Hernandez, The New York Times


WASHINGTON, Sept. 26 — The war of words between the Bush administration and the Clintons intensified on Tuesday as Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton suggested that her husband would have reacted differently as president if he had heard the same warnings about Osama bin Laden’s plans that President Bush had access to before 9/11.

In unusually blunt terms, Senator Clinton questioned the current administration’s response to an intelligence briefing President Bush received about a month before the 9/11 attacks. It mentioned that Al Qaeda was intent on striking the United States using hijacked planes.

“I’m certain that if my husband and his national security team had been shown a classified report entitled ‘Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States,’ he would have taken it more seriously than history suggests it was taken by our current
president and his national security team,” she said during an appearance on Capitol Hill. (
link)

So Clinton would have taken the threat more seriously ...

I'm reminded of the story Monica Lewinsky told in which she was "servicing Wild Willy" one day while he was on the phone in the Oval Office, talking to a congressman about sending American troops into harm's way.

He took his job seriously all right.

Hillary and Bill: A match made in heaven.

Or, As The Post Puts It ...

Bill Clinton is scrambling to change history. But that history has already been written. As the New York Post lays it out in an editorial this morning:

Of course, it is true that Bill Clinton never got such a briefing.

Instead, he got:

* The 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia, which killed 19 U.S. airmen.

* The bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa, which killed 224, including 12 Americans, and wounded 5,000.

* The 2000 attack on USS Cole, which killed 17 sailors.

And so on.

All those demonstrated that al Qaeda meant to kill Americans - as many as possible.

And those attacks, of course, all followed the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center.

As the 9/11 Commission report details: Despite irrefutable evidence of the threat from Islamic terrorists, "there was no National Intelligence Estimate on terrorism [undertaken] between 1995 and 9/11.
There was no comprehensive review of what the intelligence community knew [about al Qaeda] and what it did not know and what that meant."


Indeed, the report concludes, Clinton's flaccid response may have led bin Laden to make the "inference that such attacks, at least on the level of the Cole, were risk-free."

In contrast, Bush - almost immediately upon taking office - "began developing a new strategy with the stated goal of eliminating the al Qaeda threat [to America] within three to five years."

Indeed, even before that August 2001 briefing, Bush ordered the deployment of armed unmanned aircraft "to kill [Osama] bin Laden or his lieutenants."

It's interesting reading.

Both Clintons should try it. (
link)

My guess is, the use of the word flaccid was no accident. Seems appropriate to the age. In so many ways ...

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

On Noam Chomsky And Hate

The world is full of people who wish to think ill of America. And most of them would like to be Americans.

Success breeds resentment, and resentment that has no safety valve becomes a desire to destroy. The proof of that was offered on 9/11 and by just about every utterance that has emerged from the Islamists since. But Americans don't want to believe it. They trust others to take the kind of pleasure in American success that they, in turn, take in the success of others. But this pleasure in others' success, which is the great virtue of America, is not to be witnessed in those who denounce her. They hate America not for her faults, but for her virtues, which cast a humiliating light on those who cannot adapt to the modern world or take advantage of its achievements.

Prof. Chomsky is an intelligent man. Not everything he says by way of criticizing his country is wrong. However, he is not valued for his truths but for his rage, which stokes the rage of his admirers. He feeds the self-righteousness of America's enemies, who feed the self-righteousness of Prof. Chomsky. And in the ensuing blaze everything is sacrificed, including the constructive criticism that America so much needs, and that America--unlike its enemies, Prof. Chomsky included--is prepared to listen to.

Roger Scruton, "Who Is Noam Chomsky?" The Wall Street Journal, September 26, 2006 (link)

You Don't Want Those Jobs? Send 'Em Here

Montgomery County is full up on good-paying jobs. Or so it would appear:

Board against freight facility

By Paul Dellinger, The Roanoke Times

CHRISTIANSBURG -- The Montgomery County Board of Supervisors went on record Monday night as being opposed to the location of an intermodal freight facility in Elliston.

[Supervisor Gary] Creed said he opposes the project because of its possibly detrimental effects on tourism and the natural beauty of eastern Montgomery County. He also cited safety concerns, because the intermodal facility would drastically increase truck traffic. [John] Muffo said placement of an intermodal facility in that area does not fit the county's comprehensive land-use plan and that if NS had approached the board to ask about placing the facility there, the answer would probably have been no. Perkins said she had opposed the facility from the start. (
link)

"... detrimental effects on tourism."

"... the county's comprehensive land-use plan."

You'd think there was actually something going on in eastern Montgomery County. In fact it is, for the most part, devoid of anything as far as the eye can see (except for Elliston with its quaint tourist-attracting abandoned buildings dotting the landscape). I guess that's the supervisors' comprehensive land-disuse plan.

If y'all don't want those jobs because they'll bring commerce into the area, please send them over our way. We haven't lost our collective minds. Yet.

More Vile Distractions

Will Jim Webb, if elected, vote to raise your taxes? I get the distinct impression we'll never know:
Allen denies use of racial epithet at UVa
By Michael Sluss, The Roanoke Times


RICHMOND -- U.S. Sen. George Allen on Monday adamantly denied an online magazine report in which a former University of Virginia football teammate alleged that Allen, as a college student, often used an inflammatory racial epithet to refer to black people. (
link)
We sink lower and lower ...

A Hokie Tradition Alive And Well

2 Va. Tech athletes are arrested

Condi Spanks Bubba


With the assistance of a fawning news media, Bill Clinton got away with his lies and distortions for years. Not anymore. There's a new boss in town:
RICE BOILS OVER AT BUBBA
By Ian Bishop, New York Post Correspondent


September 26, 2006 -- Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice yesterday accused Bill Clinton of making "flatly false" claims that the Bush administration didn't lift a finger to stop terrorism before the 9/11 attacks.

Rice hammered Clinton, who leveled his charges in a contentious weekend interview with Chris Wallace of Fox News Channel, for his claims that the Bush administration "did not try" to kill Osama bin Laden in the eight months they controlled the White House before the Sept. 11 attacks.

"The notion somehow for eight months the Bush administration sat there and didn't do that is just flatly false - and I think the 9/11 commission understood that," Rice said during a wide-ranging meeting with Post editors and reporters.

"What we did in the eight months was at least as aggressive as what the Clinton administration did in the preceding years," Rice added. (
link)

For those of you who live under a rock and didn't read the news, Bill Clinton on Sunday lashed out savagely at Fox News, Chris Wallace, Rupert Murdock, all us right-wing conspiracists, and the Bush administration in response to a rather innocuous question from Wallace about Clinton not having connected the dots and prevented 9/11.

Oddly, he didn't assail the terrorists in his violent tirade. Speaks volumes, I think.

Anyway, Condoleezza isn't the kind of woman to sit around and take cheap shots from small people without retaliating. She did.

She's my kinda woman.

Photo courtesy of The New York Post

Quote Of The Day

It was especially odd to hear Clinton complain that "Bush's neocons" faulted him for being "too obsessed with bin Laden."

Really? All I ever heard from Bush's neocons - most of whom I know, several of whom I'm closely related to, and one of whom I see anytime I look in the mirror - was dismay from 1993 onward at Clinton pulling out of Somalia, worry about his not doing more against the bombers of Khobar Towers, relief and support when he finally took action against al Qaeda in 1998 after the embassy bombings in Africa, and dismay yet again at the failure to respond to the attack on the USS Cole. Weird.


John Podhoretz, "Wild Bill Rant Robs Hillary of Limelight," The New York Post, September 26, 2006 (link)

Quote Of The Day II

The blame for 9/11 goes back fully 25 years, and includes both Democratic and Republican presidents.

At the same time, the Clinton years were bookended by al Qaeda bombings - the 1993 attack World Trade Center attack, and the October 2000 suicide assault on USS Cole - with plenty of blood spilled in between.

Clinton effectively slept through it all - and now he's trying to rewrite history.
It won't wash.


New York Post editorial, "Condi vs. Bubba ...," September 26, 2006 (link)

Words Have Meaning

Rogue
Noun: rowg
1. A deceitful and unreliable scoundrel
_____

This from an editorial in the New York Times this morning:
Where Congress Is Soft on Criminals

House sycophants of the National Rifle Association are aiming this week to hobble the federal government’s power to revoke the licenses of rogue gun dealers who arm the underworld. A shameless proposal would replace existing law with wrist-slapping penalties and an impossible definition of “willful intent” that would hamstring efforts to close lawless marketeers. (
link) [my emphasis]
It would seem to a normal person that a "rogue" gun dealer who "arms the underworld" would have willful intent. By definition. And would therefore be covered by the new law. So where's the beef?

Had the editorialist at the Times tried to control his or her hatred toward ... me (I'm the NRA), there might have been a point here.

Monday, September 25, 2006

They're At It Again

To hear Southwest Virginia Democrats tell it, VDOT will go out of business if we don't find a compromise (i.e. raise taxes) in the special session of the legislature that was called to hammer out a transportation plan:
Special session crucial to Southwest Va. transportation
By Charles Owens, Bluefield Daily Telegraph

TAZEWELL, Va. — When lawmakers return to Richmond Wednesday in hopes of resolving the statewide transportation funding question, the outcome of the legislative debate will be closely watched by officials in Southwest Virginia.“If there isn’t a statewide plan, we won’t benefit,” Sen. Phillip Puckett, D-Russell, said of Southwest Virginia. “That’s the thing that concerns me more than anything else. Without a significant statewide plan, I don’t think the Senate will support regional plans. What would happen, there would be almost nothing in new money to other areas of the state.”

If lawmakers fail to strike a deal this week, any impact to Southwest Virginia would most likely be felt in the long term, Delegate Dan Bowling, D-Tazewell, said. (
link)
They go on to express concern that the Coalfield Expressway and its Route 460 connector, as well as the Route 696 project in Tazewell County might be in jeopardy. Again.

The statewide plan that Puckett voted for, in case you forgot, involved a massive tax increase, an action he's never shied away from. Bowling being a Democrat, it can be assumed he favors one as well.

Remember this: Any increase in the tax burden here in Southwest Virginia will result in more job losses, more depopulation, and more economic hardship. It's time to decide what our priorities are.

We may get some nice roads when all is said and done. But WE may not be around to enjoy them.

Taking My Advice

I suggested recently that, with gas prices plummeting, you left-wing conspiracists out there should change your argument from "Big Oil is running up gas prices in order to make windfall profits off the backs of those most vulnerable" to "Big Oil is running down gas prices in order to get Republicans re-elected."

The Charleston (WV) Gazette has taken my advice:
Potpourri

Gasoline prices have dropped to $2.23 at Cross Lanes and elsewhere. Is the huge cut a conspiracy by Big Oil to make ruling Republicans look good in the upcoming election? The answer will be clear if prices soar again after the voting. (
link)

The Law Of Supply And Demand couldn't have anything to do with it ...

Judenhetze, Virginia Style

When Peggy Fox of WUSA-TV in Washington, D.C. asked Senator George Allen at the recent debate if he had any Jewish forbears, a palpable gasp went up from the 600 or so in attendance, followed quickly by boos and hisses. Allen's response has generally been characterized as being one of indignation, as was appropriate.

Liberal bloggers the next day couldn't figure out what all the fuss was about. To them, it was a perfectly legitimate question. That in itself says more about those who are propelling James Webb's candidacy into the cesspit than about Peggy Fox and her completely inappropriate question.

The attitude (and ignorance) expressed by the party faithful is apparently part of a growing trend, and the Democratic Party leadership is becoming concerned (even if Webb isn't):

Dirty Dirty Politics
By The Prowler, The American Spectator

With Democrat hopes to retake the House and Senate seemingly crumbling by the day, both Senate minority leader Harry Reid and House minority leader Nancy Pelosi have grown increasingly alarmed about the growing anti-Semitic and racist tone of their party's base, say House and Senate Democrat leadership staff.

"They have been monitoring the [Ben] Cardin and [James] Webb races and they are extremely concerned," says a Senate Democrat leadership aide. "On both campaigns' staffs and on the Internet we are hearing and reading an ugliness that we haven't seen in probably decades. It's embarrassing, but we're chalking it up to a small segment of young people who are frustrated at constantly losing and are lashing out. To think otherwise raises too many uncomfortable questions about our party." (
link)
In Webb's case, I have a tendency to believe as well that it's a small segment of young, politically immature teenagers wth a keyboard, a modem, and a paycheck from the Webb campaign who are driving this wretched effort. That makes it all the worse.

James Webb is wanting us to believe he is a man with leadership capabilities. To this point, it appears he can't even get control of his own campaign.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Where's The Fight In The Fightin' 9th?

The following column originally appeared in the Roanoke Times on August 31, 2006

Get ready to rumble
By Jerry Fuhrman

This is an open letter and a word of advice to Bill Carrico, Republican candidate for the 9th Congressional District.

Everyone tells me you're a great guy with a superb track record in the Virginia House of Delegates and that you're right on the issues that matter most.

But you're going to lose if you let your opponent -- a powerful foe with a vast array of resources and a boatload of influential friends -- set the agenda and the tone of the debate. As of this writing, you are doing just that.

Your adversary has already begun the process of framing the contest in the same way he did in 2004 when he ran against Kevin Triplett. He has made it clear to his supporters -- and to his friends in the mainstream press -- that he is going to maintain a "positive campaign."

His intention is to force you to keep your criticisms positive as well or run the risk of being labeled, as Triplett was two years ago, as "having gone negative." Kevin played the game to the end and was positively crushed by 20 points on election night. Do the same, and prepare to meet the same fate.

There is much for which Rick Boucher has to answer relating to realities here on the ground; ground we are slowly, inexorably losing. And making nice will not get us answers. Especially to questions like these:
  • Economic projections for Southwest Virginia -- even when taking into account more robust areas like Blacksburg, Wytheville and Abingdon -- paint a bleak picture. According to the Milken Institute, the nation's premier economic think tank, Bristol, as part of the district's only metropolitan statistical area known as the tri-cities -- ranks 170th in terms of future economic growth potential out of 200 MSAs across the U.S. To put it in terms that can be more readily understood, 170th puts Bristol on a glide path to third-world country status if we stay on course. Does Boucher find something positive in the fact that Bristol beat out Detroit (192nd)?
  • Since he was re-elected in 2004, dozens of employers in Pulaski, Smyth, Scott, Russell, Wise, Wythe, and Giles counties as well as in Galax closed their doors because the cost of doing business here became too great. Why?
  • The largest private employer in Washington County has laid off a fifth of its workers and is up for sale. Why?
  • According to the U.S. Census Bureau, since Boucher originally took office in 1983, Lee, Dickenson, Tazewell, and Buchanan counties have lost population as thousands of families have left the area to find work. Why?
  • Add to that statistic another census bureau report that estimates a loss of population in Scott, Pulaski, Patrick, Wise, Russell, and Smyth counties between the 2000 census and today. Why?
  • The largest employer in Giles County, one that provided 28 percent of total county tax revenue, has nearly shut down. Why?
  • A quarter of the people in Lee County live below the poverty line. Why?
  • Millions of precious taxpayer dollars have been devoted to developing the tourism industry in Southwest Virginia in recent years with virtually nothing to show for it. Why?
  • Buchanan County has the highest suicide rate in the state, followed by Scott, Russell, Wise and Lee. Double the state average. Why?
  • An estimated 6,000 homes in Southwest Virginia have no indoor plumbing. In 2006. Why?
  • The government has found the drinking water coming out of Callahan Creek and the Powell River to be unfit for human consumption. Yet many citizens of Wise County have no alternative source of potable water. Why?
  • Why substandard housing?
  • Why a shorter life expectancy?
  • Why higher infant mortality rates?
  • Why underperforming schools?

Why?

Mr. Carrico, the people of Southwest Virginia deserve answers. You can choose to keep your campaign on a positive plane and lose, or you can demand accountability. Thunder your demand for all to hear. Convince the people of Southwest Virginia that circumstances here, though deteriorating, can improve. Convince them, and you'll win. Then, once elected, roll up your sleeves and bring positive change to this tortured land.

He Asks, I Answer

Ariel Dorfman, a Chilean American writer and professor at Duke University, asks the following question this morning in an op/ed piece in the Washington Post with regard to the ongoing debate about treatment of terrorists who are now in American custody:
Are we so fearful, so in love with our own security and steeped in our own pain, that we are really willing to let people be tortured in the name of America?
Let me answer that. No.

Nobody is calling for the torture of prisoners being held at Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, or anywhere else. But we see as useful such harmless methods of interrogation as loud music (oh, the humanity), sleep deprivation, room temperature extremes, and, yes, "waterboarding."

The story of an Argentinian "revolutionary" being tortured at the hands of the Chilean government back in the 70's that Mr. Dorfman cites involved merciless beatings and electric shock. Who's advocating that?

A ridiculous analogy.

Your side doesn't do itself any great good by resorting to hysteria and misrepresentations sir.

Food For Thought

The leftist and liberal throng who cheered Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez at a Harlem church Thursday, a day after he called President Bush "the devil," are just the latest sign of a real problem for the Democratic Party and the nation: Bush-hate is now the opiate of the party's base.

A recent Fox News poll gets at the disturbing truth: A majority of Democrats say they want to see the president fail.

Craig Charney, "The Hate Trap," The New York Post, September 24, 2006 (link)

He's Still A Sick Joke

Bill Clinton indefatigably and relentlessly fought global terrorism when he was in office. That's his story and he's sticking to it:
Clinton Faults Bush Team Efforts to Get bin Laden Before Sept. 11 By Reuters

WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 (Reuters) — Former President Bill Clinton, angrily defending his efforts to capture Osama bin Laden, accused the Bush administration in an interview to be broadcast Sunday of doing far less to stop Mr. bin Laden before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.


“I authorized the C.I.A. to get groups together to try to kill him,” Mr. Clinton said.

“Now if you want to criticize me for one thing,” he continued, “you can criticize me for this: after the Cole, I had battle plans drawn to go into Afghanistan, overthrow the Taliban and launch a full-scale attack search for bin Laden.” But he said he was not able to follow through with his plans, adding, “We needed basing rights in Uzbekistan, which we got after 9/11.” (
link)

He coulda.

He shoulda.

He woulda.

This is about as feeble an argument as I've ever read. But it's typical Clinton.

Here's the then-leader of the free world, the most powerful man on the planet, the Commander-in-Chief of the largest and mightiest military fighting force in history drawing up battle plans to "to go into Afghanistan, overthrow the Taliban and launch a full-scale attack search for bin Laden" but those darn Uzbeks stopped him.

Not to mention that Monica woman with blue dress and heaving bosom distracting him the whole time. Oh, the torment!

God, why can't this miserable excuse for a human being get out of our lives?

Those Darn Machines!

Al Gore lost the election in 2000 because of voting machine errors in Florida.

John Kerry lost in 2004 because of irregularities that arose in Ohio.

Hillary is going to lose in 2008 in God-knows-where because of those same darn machines if we don't do something about it:
Officials Wary of Electronic Voting Machines
By Ian Urbina, The New York Times


WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 — A growing number of state and local officials are getting cold feet about electronic voting technology, and many are making last-minute efforts to limit or reverse the rollout of new machines in the November elections.

Dozens of states have adopted electronic voting technology to comply with federal legislation in 2002 intended to phase out old-fashioned lever and punch-card machines after the “hanging chads” confusion of the 2000 presidential election.

But some election officials and voting experts say they fear that the new technology may have only swapped old problems for newer, more complicated ones. Their concerns became more urgent after widespread problems with the new technology were reported this year in primaries in Ohio, Arkansas, Illinois, Maryland and elsewhere. (link)
When you get down to it, the only real problem with voting machines is in the fact that they just keep spitting out the wrong winners.

So we're apparently going to go back to paper ballots and #2 lead pencils and that will bring about the election of more Democrats.

There's a metaphor lurking in this ....

We Have a Long Way To Go

The New York Times finds some experts this morning who will not go on record to say the terror threat is still growing. The liberal rag blames Bush. Of course:
Spy Agencies Say Iraq War Worsens Terror Threat
By Mark Mazzetti, The New York Times


WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 — A stark assessment of terrorism trends by American intelligence agencies has found that the American invasion and occupation of Iraq has helped spawn a new generation of Islamic radicalism and that the overall terrorist threat has grown since the Sept. 11 attacks.

The classified National Intelligence Estimate attributes a more direct role to the Iraq war in fueling radicalism than that presented either in recent White House documents or in a report released Wednesday by the House Intelligence Committee, according to several officials in Washington involved in preparing the assessment or who have read the final document. (
link)
I can't argue with either finding. The threat of Islamist terror has been growing for 30 years (the Munich Olympics attack occurred 35 years ago) and there can be little doubt that our involvement in Iraq has brought many of those in the Arab world together to fight us.

However, it could be argued (and I will) that bringing radical Islam to the fore in the western press is a good thing. At some point we in the civilized world are going to get serious about stopping this menace from spreading by killing all these sunsabitches. Iraq has brought a certain focus to that desperate need.

For that we should be grateful to President Bush.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Afraid of That Spinach?

People are now dying from e coli embedded in fresh vegetables. To avoid injury or death, I recommend as an alternative .... MEAT.


These have to be tough times for you vegetarians out there ...

This Can't Be Good

If you don't know what a bush hog is, you don't need to read this. If you know what a bush hog is, you probably don't want to:
Woman with bush hog injuries, condition unknown
TriCities.com

Virginia authorities transported a Washington County woman to a local emergency room after she was caught under a bush hog.


The incident occurred Thursday afternoon near North Ford River, officials said. The woman has not been identified and her condition is unknown. (
link)
The mind reels ...

Christmas In September

I decided recently to cash in all the frequent flyer/frequent sleeper points I've accumulated from the many hotels and airlines I routinely patronize. Some of these had grown to embarrassing proportions. So I'm now the proud owner of a Sony photo scanner, a 6 megapixel Nikon camera, a $100 Lowe's gift certificate, about twenty magazine subscriptions (I just cashed in the last of my Continental Airlines points this morning) and I still have countless free nights at hotels that offer only free nights.

With the disappointing exception that nobody offers booze or cigars, this is kinda cool.

Lost In The Wilderness

Two congregations from two increasingly liberal - and disoriented - church organizations have decided to walk away and to merge. The news:
Lutheran and Episcopal groups merge
Some people left their churches because of disagreements with the Episcopal Church in America.
Jen McCaffery, The Roanoke Times


A Roanoke Valley evangelical Lutheran church has joined forces with a small group of disenchanted Roanoke Valley Episcopalians who left their home churches this summer.

Representatives from both congregations announced the unification at a small press conference Friday at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church on North Lake Drive. (
link)
Though the Lutheran church is generally considered quite conservative in its approach to ordination, social issues, and theological principles, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is by far the most liberal - and increasingly so - of its synods. And the Episcopal church in recent years has gone off the charts. And is rapidly imploding.

Let's hope these poor souls find God on this journey.

An Endorsement

There's been a lot of speculation of late that New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg is considering a presidential run (an example). Some experts (who do nothing for their reputations by conjuring such nonsense) actually think he could win.

But as Bill Clinton learned during his interminable stay in the White House, you don't screw with the NRA and expect to survive. Bloomberg hasn't learned - and will never learn that lesson:

GUN BLAST FROM MIKE
By Frankie Edozien, The New York Post

September 23, 2006 -- Mayor Bloomberg fumed yesterday that Congress doesn't care about getting illegal guns off the streets.

"They're going to pass a bill that says if a gun dealer lies in his paperwork, it's OK as long as its not a big lie. And not only can they lie, they can't be punished for destroying the evidence," Bloomberg said on his weekly WABC radio show. (link)

Gun control. Every politician in America now knows to stay away from it. But not Mike.

We should welcome a Bloomberg third-party run. He certainly wouldn't draw any Republican votes outside the northeast where, as long as we have that annoying electoral college process in place, their votes don't matter, the rabidly liberal mayor can only hope to pull votes from Hillary.

Run, Mike, run.

The Underlying Story

I read the following and paused:

Berlin Mayor, Symbol of Openness, Has National Appeal
By Mark Lander, The New York Times

Fresh from his never-in-doubt re-election as Berlin’s mayor, Klaus Wowereit was soaking up the vibe at Popkomm, a music-industry trade show where the conventioneers favor fishnet stockings and motorcycle boots. In short: a typical Berlin scene. (
link)
"Symbol of openness?" What the hell is that?

Why would this non-story, of a mayor half way around the world getting re-elected to a post he had no chance of losing, get such a prominent write-up? Then I noticed the accompanying photo -


Hmm. I knew where this was going.

After reading through some fluff, I came to this:

Charming, sociable and openly gay, Klaus Wowereit (pronounced vo-vuh-rite) is the newest star in the German political firmament. It is a firmament short on stars. After his victory, the mass-market newspaper Bild ran a front-page headline asking, “Will Wowi Be the First Gay Chancellor?”

The ulterior motive. This man isn't a mayor. He's gay. That's what was important to the Times.

Just as Barack Obama, the Democratic Illinois senator who receives all that adulation from people who know absolutely nothing about him is revered because of his skin color, Klaus Wowereit makes headlines because he sleeps with men. Is he a decent mayor? It doesn't matter.

Shallow. So shallow ...

Photo courtesy of The New York Times

Friday, September 22, 2006

Someone Call The Gov: We Need Tractor Control

I can't begin to tell you the number of ways my tractor has been put to good use over the years. From fencepost pulling to horse herding; barn building to sightseeing.

But I never thought of using it as a weapon. Hmm ...
Tractor is alleged attack weapon
Farmworker charged with malicious wounding in Wythe County case
By Rex Bowman, Richmond Times-Dispatch Staff Writer


WYTHEVILLE -- A Wytheville farmworker stands accused of losing his temper and attacking a woman with a tractor.

"I was standing there, like, 'This can't be happening!'" Wythe County resident Samuel Wade Hagee testified in a Wytheville courtroom yesterday as he recounted witnessing the alleged tractor attack. "You could hear him cursin', hollerin' and screamin'."

Jeffrey C. Turpin, 41, is charged with the Aug. 26 malicious wounding of Robyn Babos, who hobbled into the Wythe General District Court on crutches, her broken left leg in a splint.

Turpin, who lives on the Crockett Farm, has been convicted over the years of public swearing and cursing and abusing others. Authorities allege a hot-headed Turpin chased Babos, 45, across the farm with the John Deere tractor after aborted negotiations for a $500 truck.

With Babos still in the truck, Turpin used the hydraulic-powered bucket on the front of the tractor to lift the front of the truck up about 3 feet and then drop it, Hagee testified. Babos jumped out of the truck, and Turpin used the tractor to push it up the hill. It rolled back down, through a fence and into a bog.

A furious Turpin then chased Babos and Hagee up the hill, revving the tractor's engine and threatening to bury them if they didn't leave, Hagee testified. When Babos fell down, Turpin dropped the 350-pound iron bucket to the ground and rolled the bucket over her, breaking her leg, Hagee said.

Turpin, who did not testify yesterday, denies the charge. (
link)
First, an apology for making light of this incident. This poor woman was injured!

Second, what kind of negotiation could there have been if the truck was worth $500? Heck, you can't buy a truck part for $500 these days. Was this jewel worth killing someone over?

Third, none of this made sense until I read this:
"Mr. Turpin accused us of drinking his beer and smoking his cigarettes."
Well. Shoot. Now it all becomes clear. Come on my property and drink my beer and smoke my cigarettes (or cigars in my case) and I'll be chasing you around the field with the old Ferguson TEA20 as well. Consider this fair warning.

A Sign Of The Times

Britain as a whole is ... well-supplied with mosques. There were a few in the 19th and early 20th centuries. By the 1980s there were about 150 and by 1996 there were 613. Now there are well over a thousand, many of them converted Anglican churches. [my emphasis]

Hal G.P. Golebatch, "Imam Livingstone, I Presume?" The American Spectator, September 22, 2006 (link)

Your Tax Dollars At Work

The government is reporting this morning that a computer has turned up missing. No, make that two computers. No ...
1,100 Laptops Missing From Commerce Dept.
By Alan Sipress, Washington Post Staff Writer


More than 1,100 laptop computers have vanished from the Department of Commerce since 2001, including nearly 250 from the Census Bureau containing such personal information as names, incomes and Social Security numbers, federal officials said yesterday. (
link)
There are 17 departments in the federal government. Commerce is one of the smaller ones ...