John Galt

'Light tomorrow with today.' -- Elizabeth Barrett Browning --

Friday, September 01, 2006

It Must Be Harvest Time

You'll be reading a whole lot of stories like this as Southwest Virginia's largest cash crop matures:

Marijuana Plants Seized in Wythe County
Rosa Duarte, WSLS NewsChannel 10

Wythe County investigators along with Virginia State Police uncover one of the largest marijuana crops in the area in the past several years.

Wednesday, investigators found 123 plants in the middle of a cornfield in eastern Wythe County, they heard about the crop through an anonymous tip. Many of the plants are more than 8 feet tall, Virginia State Police say each one has a street value of around one thousand dollars. (
link)
I've never purchased marijuana and have no idea what the street value is but shouldn't 123 smoke-a-dope plants be worth more than $1000? If not, why bother? The corn in that corn field is worth more than that, especially if scientists can make this cost-effective.

***
Update 09/01/06 12:23pm: A correction is in order. A friend had me reread the sentence above that clearly has the words "each one," making the crop worth $123,000. I now switch from incredulity (why bother?) to incredulity (a marijuana plant is worth $1000?!).

Church Continues To Crumble

It sure seems that in its effort to be more "inclusive," the Presbyterian Church (USA) has excluded a whole lot of parishioners. The latest to walk away:
Presbyterians: Congregation Decides: Kirk of the Hills votes to leave denomination
By Bill Sherman, Tulsa World Religion Writer

Members of Kirk of the Hills Presbyterian rose to their feet and cheered, whistled and clapped for nearly a minute Wednesday evening when it was announced that they had overwhelmingly endorsed their church leaders' decision to leave the Presbyterian Church (USA).

The decision of Kirk of the Hills to disaffiliate with its denomination is the latest round in a growing fight in the Presbyterian Church and other mainline denominations over issues of the authority of Scripture and the place of gay men and lesbians in church leadership. (
link)

What was the point the church leadership was trying to make again?

What's Up With This?

With everything Wythe and Washington Counties have going for them these days, what has happened to their schools?
City school system receives failing grade in federal NCLB program
David McGee, Bristol Herald-Courier Staff Writer


The state Department of Education released [No Child Left Behind] scores as the Virginia School Report Card. It’s based on performance during the 2005-06 school year.

In Southwest Virginia, most school systems met all of the federal standards, with systems and most or all individual schools in Buchanan, Lee, Scott, Smyth, Tazewell, Washington and Wise counties and the city of Norton making adequate yearly progress.

The school systems in Russell and Wythe counties didn’t meet all the standards, and three schools in Washington County failed to meet some of the criteria. (
link)
It is the next generation that is going to be called upon to fix the myriad problems Southwest Virginia is (and will be) facing. If they are going to take on that responsibility, they'll need to be well-educated. That is our responsibility. You folks in Russell, Wythe, and Washington Counties need to start asking questions.

Where Are The Whiners?

I passed an Exxon station up in Roanoke yesterday that was selling gasoline for $2.49 a gallon. That's about 50¢ cheaper than it was a month ago. So what do all those leftist bloggers who were screaming only days ago for congressional investigations into price gouging have to say in response to this rather rapid decline in price?

Let's take a look:

Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Well, it wasn't a fair question. Most of them don't have meaningful jobs so they're still in bed.

But I'll be pointing up their deafening silence (and their failure to apologize to those they slandered) in a few months when the price of gas starts going back up and they begin to howl once again about Republican conspiracies and Bush ties to Big Oil and such idiocy.

Do you suppose they'll ever learn?

I Have a Better Idea

The people of Roanoke want their abandoned stadium site to be a park and tennis courts:
Public favors sports complex, greenways on old stadium site
People also suggested filling the space with an amphitheater or a kayak
water park.
By Amanda Codispoti, The Roanoke Times


At a Parks and Recreation Department forum Thursday night, the top recommendation for developing the land where Victory Stadium once stood was to build a multiuse sports complex.

There were also suggestions to build an amphitheater, an arboretum or an RV campsite.

During the forum, about 60 people gave their views about what the department is doing well, what it could do better and what would improve quality of life in the city. (
link)

My guess is those 60 people have a nice comfortable paycheck coming, unlike so many other area residents. If I were king, I'd sell the property to the highest bidder who promised serious job creation and use the windfall to reduce the tax burden of local businesses.

But I'm neither king nor resident. So ...

Call Me Selfish ...

I'm hoping Governor Schwarzenegger and the California Democrats keep this kind of thing up:
California Plan to Cut Gases Splits Industry
By Jad Mouawad and Jeremy W. Peters, The New York Times


California is once again at the forefront of the nation’s environmental policy, with a far-reaching pledge to curb carbon emissions by 2020. But the deal struck on Wednesday between Democratic legislators and the Republican governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has divided businesses and industries in California.

While high-technology companies have lined up behind the move, arguing that it will put California at the forefront of alternative energy development, most of those representing basic industries contend that it will retard the economy, force energy-intensive businesses out of state and increase costs for all Californians. (
link)
This is good ... for us. Keep it up, Arnold. Drive those industries out of your state. We need them here and welcome them with open arms. It would appear you've got more jobs in California than you want anyway.

Your loss is our gain.