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

Friday, April 20, 2007

We've Done Nothing All right

Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne believes we should look to gun control in response to the Virginia Tech massacre. Again.

But, with a twist, he'd have you believe we've never tried it before. He writes:

Gun Law Pragmatism
By E. J. Dionne Jr., The Washington Post

Why do we have the same futile argument every time there is a mass killing?

Advocates of gun control try to open a discussion about whether more reasonable weapons statutes might reduce the number of violent deaths. Opponents of gun control shout "No!" Guns don't kill people, people kill people, they say, and anyway, if everybody were carrying weapons, someone would have taken out the murderer and all would have been fine.

And we do nothing.

This is a stupid argument, driven by the stupid politics of gun control in the United States. (link)

We do nothing. The same argument that was used to pass the first major gun control law in the United States. In 1968. Forty years ago. After two scandalous crimes involving guns, the assassinations of former Attorney General (and then-presidential candidate) Bobby Kennedy and the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

We do nothing.

Nothing? We now have 10,000 gun laws in this country. That's nothing? Every time another notorious killing takes place, these guys drag out that same old, worn-out, failed argument. We've done nothing. We need to do something. We need a gun law.

We've sat back and allowed these depraved fools to convince us that we've done nothing - over and over again - about crime in this country and now, 10,000 laws later, the murders continue - and we are still accused of doing nothing.

Well, we've decided to do something. Finally. After listening to E.J. Dionne and his ilk for forty years tell us that they could end the violence with a gun law, another gun law, a series of gun laws, gun laws on top of gun laws, and forty years after they began having their way, 10,000 gun laws later, finding that they've accomplished absolutely nothing, we've decided to try something different.

We now demand that the people of the United States be allowed to defend themselves.

We now demand that, when a parent sends a child to school, that that child be protected, not made absolutely defenseless.

We now demand that a professor, should he wish to be able to defend himself rather than acquiesce to being killed, be allowed to use whatever force is necessary to prevent the depredations of deranged lunatics intent on doing them and their charges grievous harm.

We now demand that, when a woman is being stalked by a crazed psychopath, that she not have to pin her hopes of survival on some meaningless court order, that she be allowed to defend herself with whatever means are necessary.

We now demand that, rather than hide behind a desk as a madman chains the doors barring our escape and begins executing people, and waiting twenty minutes for law enforcement to come to our promised rescue, that we be able to defend ourselves.

We now demand the right to not be at a maniac's mercy, hoping and praying that he either runs out of ammunition or, as was the case in the Virginia Tech Massacre, that the madman finally decides to kill himself before killing all of us.

We have but one life. We now demand the right to live it.

We hold our children to be the most precious gifts that will ever be given to us. We now demand the right to protect them at all costs.

You've had it your way, E.J., for far too long. Your way has ended in dismal, tragic failure. More deaths. More gun laws. More mad gunmen. More gun laws. Enough is enough. We now demand the right to have it our way.

We did nothing. As a sociopath roamed the hallways of one of America's most prestigious universities, slaughtering innocent girls and boys with impunity, those boys and girls, men and women, and their professors, beloved sons and daughters, were allowed to do nothing.

We did nothing either. You at least got that right. To your everlasting shame.

A Disgraceful Subterfuge

The Roanoke Times this morning would have you believe that there is an occasion when, during a late-term abortion procedure in which a baby is nearly completely extracted from a mother's womb, all except for the head which remains in the birth canal, that a need arises to crush that baby's skull and suck out its brains, ostensibly because of the mother's health being, at that moment, jeopardized.

They must think we're idiots.
A reversal of women's rights
Roanoke Times editorial

Five gentlemen jurists on the Supreme Court want to protect the little ladies from themselves and their doctors.

This bizarre reasoning is the most offensive part of Wednesday's tortured ruling by a new, more conservative Supreme Court majority that upheld a federal ban on "partial-birth abortions," in part to spare women later regret.

The most ominous part of the 5-4 decision is that, for the first time since Roe v. Wade in 1973 established a woman's right to abortion, the court has sanctioned a restriction that makes no exception for protecting a woman's health. (link)
In order to be clear on the ruling, all the Supreme Court did was to cede the authority to legislate such matters to Congress, where the power to legislate belongs.

But this business about endangering the life of the mother by banning such a barbaric act of human abasement is at least preposterous. And in fact disingenuous. Not to mention down-right wrong.

We are not savages. The Supreme Court is slowly coming to that reality. It's high time the Roanoke Times did as well.

Is This The Next Guy To Go Postal?

Over the years, actor Alec Baldwin has captured headlines. Some impressive; some less so. But after what took place at Virginia Tech on Monday, I view jokers like him in a whole new light. Baldwin's daughter might do the same.

From TMZ.com:

Alec Baldwin's Threatening Message to Daughter
Posted Apr 19th 2007 2:57PM by TMZ Staff

An enraged Alec Baldwin unleashed a volcanic tirade of threats and insults on his 11-year-old daughter, Ireland, calling her a "thoughtless little pig," and bashing her mother Kim Basinger -- and TMZ has obtained the whole thing unfiltered and raw. And we've learned, a family law judge was so alarmed after hearing the tape, she has temporarily barred Baldwin from having any contact with his child.

After Ireland failed to answer her father's scheduled morning phone call from New York on April 11, Alec went berserk on her voice mail, saying "Once again, I have made an ass of myself trying to get to a phone," adding, "you have insulted me for the last time."

Switching his train of thought, Baldwin then exercised his incredible parenting skills and took a shot at his ex-wife, declaring, "I don't give a damn that you're 12-years-old or 11-years-old, or a child, or that your mother is a thoughtless pain in the ass who doesn't care about what you do." The irate Baldwin went on to say, "You've made me feel like s**t" and threatened to "straighten your ass out."

... on Wednesday, Los Angeles County Superior Court commissioner Maren Nelson heard the tape and temporarily suspended Baldwin's visitation rights. A hearing is set for May 4, where the judge could permanently deny Baldwin visitation or contact with Ireland. (link)

Listen* to Baldwin's disturbing rant here.

Does this guy own any guns?

* Requires media player.

A Man Not To Be Trusted

Would you want this man sending your son into battle?

Just days ago:

Reid: Brief Troop Increase OK in Iraq
By Hope Kent, The Associated Press

Washington -- The Senate's top Democrat offered qualified support Sunday for a plan to increase U.S. troops in Iraq, saying it would be acceptable as part of a broader strategy to bring combat forces home by 2008.

Incoming Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, whose party campaigned in the November congressional elections on changing course in Iraq, said he would be open only to a short-term increase.

"If the commanders on the ground said this is just for a short period of time, we'll go along with that." (link)

But by yesterday, just as troop strength is being increased, Reid was disagreeing with himself:
Leading Democrat in Senate Tells Reporters, ‘This War Is Lost’
By Jeff Zeleny, The New York Times

Washington, April 19 — As Congressional Democrats sought to reconcile their differences and send an Iraq spending bill to the White House, Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, said Thursday that “this war is lost,” a stark assessment that Republicans argued would demoralize American troops fighting in Iraq.

“I believe myself that the secretary of state, secretary of defense and — you have to make your own decisions as to what the president knows — that this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq.” (link)
Here's Senator Mitch McConnell's response to Reid's cowardly retreat:

“I can’t begin to imagine how our troops in the field, who are risking their lives every day, are going to react when they get back to base and hear that the Democrat leader of the United States Senate has declared the war is lost.”

Actually I can imagine. The troops in the field have known all along that the Democratic Party in this country has been plotting their demise. They fight the enemy in spite of it. That's why, in the eyes of down-home America, they are our heroes. And why Harry Reid and his Democratic cohorts are seen as being the despicable human beings that they are.

Quote Of The Day

From a New York Post editorial:

"With enemies like Democratic Senate Majority Harry Reid (sic), the terrorists don't need friends."

"Harry Reid's White Flag," April 20, 2007

Scandal! Or Not.

Funny. I don't remember these guys having a problem with Hillary firing everyone in the White House Travel Office in 1993 and replacing them with her friends.
Wolfowitz Backed Friend for Iraq Contract in ’03
By Thom Shanker and Steven R. Weisman, The New York Times

Washington, April 19 — Paul D. Wolfowitz, while serving as deputy secretary of defense, personally recommended that his companion, Shaha Ali Riza, be awarded a contract for travel to Iraq in 2003 to advise on setting up a new government, says a previously undisclosed inquiry by the Pentagon’s inspector general.

The inquiry, as described by a senior Pentagon official, concluded that there was no wrongdoing in Mr. Wolfowitz’s role in the hiring of Ms. Riza by the Science Applications International Corporation, a Pentagon contractor, because Ms. Riza had the expertise required to advise on the role of women in Islamic countries. (link)
Kinda reminds you of the Wilson/Plame scandal in which Plame, the CIA employee, recommended her unemployed husband for a mission to Niger, doesn't it? An act that the Times to this day refuses to even acknowledge.

Oh, and while we're on that subject, the Times had no real problem with the firing of all those Travel Office employees either. Odd how the righteousness comes and goes.

I Am Of Two Minds

I heard yesterday that executives at NBC were catching all kinds of flack over their decision to air the Cho videotapes that had been mailed to their broadcast network headquarters. People resented both the exploitation of this tragic event through the repeated televising of the killer's rant, as well as the hero-worship effect the broadcast was having - at least in the eyes of all the nuts out there - elevating the madman's cult image to that of martyr.

Me? I wanted his incoherent, at times incomprehensible, at other times foolish claptrap broadcast over and over again. I wanted scorn heaped on this joker. I wanted him ridiculed without mercy.

We as a society need to reach out to those who find something - anything - either rewarding or titillating in this psychopath's actions, and teach them what we as civilized human beings think of their kinds of heroes. If we can't hang this madman's rotting carcass from a flagpole on campus for the next few months, with a sign around his neck that reads MURDERER, and allow students and faculty members there to abuse his corpse at will, an act that signals to all the other nuts out there what such idiocy results in (but we can't; as Cho has demonstrated, we're civilized ...) - a lesson to be learned by the next mass murderer out there - then expressing our contempt for his actions and for his weird psycho-drivel on national television would have to do.

But I also learned yesterday that the parents of those students killed were (understandably) having a tough time dealing with the video being broadcast on national television. Over and over again. For them, I have all the sympathy in the world, and can appreciate their feelings about such things.

For that reason, for them, I'm accepting of the call for NBC News to cease airing Cho's video.

But the problem is still with us. Society will still have to confront all those other Chos lurking out there. It's not going away.