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

Thursday, May 18, 2006

To Each His Own

Former Governor Mark Warner now has his (unflattering) portrait hanging in the state Capitol. See related story here.

If I may, I have a few questions. Click on the image to enlarge it and take a close look.

Now, why does the expression on his face make him appear to be suffering from the effects of bird flu?

Secondly, why is his right hand so much larger than his left? I wanted to ask if it had something to do with all the exercise that hand got when he was signing all those bills into law that dramatically increased taxes and state spending, but that would be a bit silly.

But the ... mind ... reels.

On a separate note, I thought the pose was rather odd until I remembered
another fella who used it to great effect. Seemed to work with the chicks too.

Anyway, if you ask me, I've always been partial to the portrait below. Talk about sartorial perfection:

To each his own, I guess.

Tourism On The Rise

By God, we should have our first sighting of tourists in Southwest Virginia this weekend. Waldo Jaquith and his "stinky hiker friends" are coming to Damascus.

Congressman Boucher's plan is working. Prosperity is just around the corner.

Anyway, Waldo, you know the rules. "Take but a picture; leave but a footprint."

And if you and your hiker pals - when you come off the trail - would avoid peeing on my wife's rhododendrons this time, she'd appreciate it.

Treasures In The State Attic

This is fascinating:
Documents Emerge in Va. Capitol Makeover
By Bob Lewis, Associated Press Writer

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- The construction dust inside Virginia's 18th century Capitol is still so thick, the stately House of Delegates chamber is barely discernible.

But from the mess and debris, hidden texts have emerged that afford a fresh glimpse into forgotten times - and the issues that dominated debate on Capitol Square.

The books and documents were discovered during the ongoing $99 million foundation-to-roof makeover of Virginia's 200-year-old Capitol, said Richard F. Sliwoski, who is overseeing the project for the Department of General Services.

One discovery, a yellowing, cardboard-bound volume of thousands of pages of legislative and executive branch reports from 1863 contains Gov. John Letcher's order that 5,340 slaves from across the state be used to dig fortifications around Richmond, the Confederate capital, during the height of the Civil War. (
Swing a sledgehammer. Find treasure. Life in the Old Dominion.

This Is Only The Beginning

I warned you a few weeks ago that this was coming:
Consumer Inflation Nails Stocks
Fed Rate Increase Back on Table, Burning Blue Chips, Bank Stocks; 'The Core Is a Bit Disturbing'

The Wall Street Journal

In the past week, investors have had to replace their party hats with hard hats.

The killjoy has been the fear that inflation is bubbling out of control. That concern was tweaked Wednesday after a government report showed consumer inflation rose more than expected in April, increasing the likelihood the Fed isn't finished. (

As the increased cost of energy (and petroleum byproducts) starts to impact the end-user (you) at the local Wal-Mart, inflation is going to become an even greater concern.

So strap yourself in. It's going to be a wild ride.

Simply The Best

Before you get to wondering, I was not alive in the 40's. But I find myself - especially when I'm tapping away on my keyboard early in the morning - listening via XM these days to music from that era. One male vocalist who hit his stride in the 40's (besides Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, and Vaughan Monroe) - and who doesn't receive the recognition he deserves - was Nat King Cole. His daughter is doing her part to rectify that:
'The World of Nat King Cole'
The Documentary Is Part of the "American Masters" Series Produced For PBS by Thirteen/WNET
Carole Cole

In 2005 -- 40 years after his untimely death -- Nat King Cole returned to Billboard's Top 50. Featuring the musical pioneer, the
American Masters documentary "The World of Nat King Cole" examines Cole's appeal and achievements during a 30-year music and television career. (link)
When Nat King Cole was "King." This should be great.

Where's Jimmy Hoffa?

The stuff legends are made of:
FBI searches Mich. land for clues on Hoffa
By Tim Martin, Associated Press Writer

MILFORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) -- The FBI on Wednesday searched property northwest of Detroit for clues to the disappearance of Jimmy Hoffa, officials said. TV newscasts showed people with shovels and freshly turned dirt at the site.

The Teamsters leader was last seen in July 1975 at a restaurant in Oakland County's Bloomfield Township. (

I once lived not far from the horse farm where this search took place. But I saw nothing, Guido. I heard and saw nothing.

Light At The End Of The Tunnel

For those of you here in Virginia who feel you've been abandoned by the Republicans in the Senate, take heart in what conservatives and their fellow outraged taxpayers have done in Pennsylvania:
G.O.P. Conservatives Topple Veteran State Lawmakers in Pennsylvania
By Jason DeParle, The New York Times

WASHINGTON, May 17 — A revolt among Pennsylvania conservatives gained national attention on Wednesday after challengers toppled at least 12 state lawmakers they deemed insufficiently committed to small government and fiscal restraint.

Among those losing their positions in a Republican primary on Tuesday were the two State Senate leaders, Robert C. Jubelirer and David J. Brightbill, who had 56 years of incumbency between them and vastly outspent their upstart rivals.

In Pennsylvania, the incumbents' fall was extraordinary. No Senate leader had lost a primary challenge since 1964.

Pennsylvania conservatives had long accused the Republican leaders of the Legislature of being too quick to go along with Gov. Edward G. Rendell, a Democrat. In two of the last three state budgets, Mr. Brouillette said, the Legislature approved more spending than Mr. Rendell had requested. (
These politicians were bounced in large part because they pushed through a huge pay raise for themselves in the dead of night (literally) but still this is heartening news for those of us here in Virginia who have to deal with Republican leadership in the Senate who are completely out of touch with their base.

I hope that Chichester character learns from this. If not, the people in his district will soon be providing a lesson.