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

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

A Firefighter Needs Your Help

On Saturday, April 28, 2007, beginning at 1:00 pm a fund-raising event will be held at the First Due Fire/EMS & Tech Rescue Gear store in Roanoke.

Featured guest at the event will be author Lt. Rhett Fleitz, of Roanoke Fire/EMS. Rhett will be autographing copies of his new book, Firefighting In Roanoke.

Proceeds from the sale of his books at this event will, in their entirety, go to injured firefighter Kevin Jamerson of the Moneta Volunteer Fire Department and his family.

Also in attendance will be Virginia's premier weblogger and erstwhile Roanoke Times columnist, me. I'll be dispensing the beer refreshments and providing small talk on an array of current events. (Cigars optional but encouraged, if you intend to share with the weblog celebrity in attendance)

* For those of you who have been wondering just who this blowhard is who authors From On High, this will be your big chance to meet Jerry Fuhrman in person. And to buy a fascinating read.

I look forward to seeing ALL of you there. Attendance will be taken.

And please buy the book. Kevin and his family could sure use your help.

Here is his story (from

On November 4th Moneta Volunteer Firefighter Kevin Jamerson was injured while at the Moneta Fire Station. Kevin was standing on a platform that broke loose from the building and fell to the ground.

Kevin was flown by Lifeguard 10 to Roanoke Memorial Hospital (RMH) with serious injuries.

He sustained a skull fracture and serious fractures to both ankles and feet. Kevin has also developed vision problems, and now has hearing loss on his right side.

Kevin's most serious injuries are to his feet and ankles, he has already had several surgeries to repair the damage.

Kevin is married and has an 18 month old son. His fellow Moneta firefighters are raising money to help his wife and child with their bills, and other basic needs, while Kevin is hospitalized.
It's my understanding that, since this involves a volunteer fire department, there was no insurance to help defray Kevin's considerable medical costs.

Your presence and generosity are requested at this event. If you have any questions, email me at
fromonhigh@earthlink.net or phone First Due Gear at (540) 375-8850.

First Due: Fire/EMS Gear
1806 Thompson Memorial Dr.
Roanoke, VA 24019
(I-81 exit 141, next to Hanging Rock)

Hillary Does YouTube

For a very selfish reason, and in my weakest moments, when I'm deepest in the throes of dementia, I hope Hillary is elected next year.

Here's why:

Great stuff.

This Can't Be Good

If cash wins elections, Republican Jeff Evans is in big trouble:

Reynolds way ahead early in campaign contributions
By Bill Wyatt, Martinsville Daily

November elections are still a ways off, but money for campaigns is already a concern. Roscoe Reynolds, in his bid for re-election reports $89,348 raised and $60,361 on hand while his opponent from Carroll County, Jeff Evans, has raised $2,077 with $1,262 on hand. (

The fact that Reynolds is notoriously ineffective as a legislator, coupled with his penchant for voting in favor of every tax increase ever proposed, along with the generally-accepted perception that he isn't all that bright, should, in a different world, send him packing.

But cash goes a long way toward redefining a politician's persona in the eyes of the electorate.

Roscoe will need every dime of it ...

And the Sun Came Up

The Roanoke Times is calling for an increase in taxes. Again.

Has another week gone by already?

The More Things Change, ...

And here we held out such hope for these guys:
Democrats 0 for 6 in Congress; agenda sidetracked by Iraq war
By Christina Bellantoni, The Washington Times

None of the elements of the newly minted Democrats' congressional agenda have made it to President Bush's desk, and the prospects of signature bills such as federal funding for stem-cell research or homeland-security improvements becoming law any time soon are doubtful.

Much of the Democratic agenda -- dubbed "Six for '06" -- sailed out of the House with bipartisan support, but all of it has stalled in the Senate as leaders scramble to deal with the Iraq war.

"I don't think they've gotten anything done," House Minority Leader John A. Boehner of Ohio said of the Democrats. "How many bills have they sent to the president? None? Somewhere around there." (link)
Well, they may not be getting anything done, but they at least know how to conduct great hearings into White House wrongdoing.

Lots and lots of practice will do that.

This Has Always Been My Belief Too

It Boils Down to This: Cheap Wine Works Fine

'We'll Settle For Nothing Less Than Sanctification'

It appears the gay community is no longer satisfied with civil unions. That was quick. Here's the message being sent, apparently: If the straight community isn't willing to celebrate with them their immoral acts, then they'll stay home.

Works for me.

The story:
Couples Not Rushing to Civil Unions in New Jersey
By Tina Kelley, The New York Times

Newark, March 20 — Preliminary figures released on Tuesday show that 229 same-sex couples applied for civil union licenses in New Jersey in the first month since they became available, far fewer than the 1,700 who registered as domestic partners in the state within that option’s first month in 2004.

The number of civil unions, which includes 10 couples who already had such status in other states, represents about 1 percent of the same-sex couples experts estimate live in New Jersey, and suggests that the ceremonies have been far less popular here than when they were first introduced in Vermont in 2000 and in Connecticut in 2005.

Gay-rights advocates said the numbers seemed anemic and attributed the low turnout for civil unions to lack of interest in anything less than same-sex marriage.

Charles Paragian, a dance instructor in Little Ferry who with his partner of 17 years adopted five children from foster care, called the civil union “bread crumbs” compared with same-sex marriage.

“I don’t want my children to learn to settle for anything,” said Mr. Paragian, 44. “It’s a Jim Crow law, it’s two separate water fountains, it’s not equal, we just don’t agree with it.” (link)
We have a meeting of the minds. The dance instructor from Little Ferry doesn't agree with same-sex civil unions. Nor does the normal world.

We are where we need to be.

Why We're There

The Democrats want us to flee Iraq so that we can devote our limited resources to fighting terrorism. That includes Hillary Clinton, depending on the day and her mood.

There are no terrorists in Iraq, you see ....
Iraq Bombers Blow Up 2 Children Used as Decoys
By Kirk Semple, The New York Times

Baghdad, March 20 — Insurgents detonated a bomb in a car with two children in it after using the children as decoys to get through a military checkpoint in Baghdad, an American general said Tuesday.

Speaking at a news briefing at the Pentagon, Maj. Gen. Michael Barbaro, deputy director for regional operations at the Joint Staff, said American soldiers had stopped the car at the checkpoint but had allowed it to pass after seeing the two children in the back seat.

“Children in the back seat lower suspicion,” he said, according to a transcript. “We let it move through. They parked the vehicle. The adults run out and detonate it with the children in back.” (link)
For the love of God.

I Can't Imagine Why

There is no one on the planet more deserving of blame for the chaos and lingering devastation in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina hit than Louisiana'a governor. Not even that beanbrain of a mayor. Obviously, the governor now agrees:
Louisiana Governor Won’t Seek 2nd Term
By Adam Nossiter, The New York Times

New Orleans, March 20 — Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, politically battered by a shaky post-Hurricane Katrina performance, announced Tuesday that she would not seek election to a second term this fall.

The Democratic governor’s announcement ends months of speculation in Louisiana political circles, fueled by dismal poll ratings that showed her capturing barely a third of the vote against a Republican challenger, Bobby Jindal, a congressman from the New Orleans suburbs.

In a brief televised statement from the governor’s mansion in Baton Rouge, Ms. Blanco said: “While so many still suffer, I am choosing to do what I believe is best for my state." (link)
That statement should be her political epitaph. "My people are hurting. I'm in charge. And I quit."

Maybe now, if Bobby Jindal takes her place, something will get done down in The Big Easy.

This Sounds Familiar

The Palestinians must use the U.S. Border Patrol to secure their borders:
Aid to Palestinians Rose in ’06 Despite an Embargo
By Steven Erlanger, The New York Times

Jerusalem, March 20 — Despite the international embargo on aid to the Palestinian Authority since Hamas came to power a year ago, significantly more aid was delivered to the Palestinians in 2006 than in 2005, according to official figures from the United Nations, United States, European Union and International Monetary Fund.

Instead of going to the Palestinian Authority, much of the money was given directly to individuals or through independent agencies like the World Food Program.

The International Monetary Fund and the United Nations say the Palestinians received $1.2 billion in aid and budgetary support in 2006, about $300 per capita, compared with $1 billion in 2005. (link)
God knows they need the assistance.

I just wish they'd do something constructive with it. And give up making bomb belts with our tax dollars.