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

Thursday, June 07, 2007

The Trials & Tribulations

Here's something you folks up in Fairfax don't have to deal with when you drive bicycle down to the neighborhood organic foods outlet to get your daily dose of leaves and twigs:
Black bears cause trouble in Wytheville
Justin Harmon, Staff, The Wytheville Enterprise

All over Southwest Virginia, and even in Wytheville, bear sightings have been on the rise. Recently, a black bear has been spotted in the Dillon's IGA parking lot, near Pine Ridge and in the dumpster of the Kangaroo gas station on Fourth Street.


According to Bill Bassinger, a wildlife biologist with the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, it's to be expected. (link)
I like that "... it's to be expected" comment. Like we expect to have a wild, growling black bear hand us the hose when we pull up to the pump at the local Citgo.

Anyway, you guys up north deal with derelicts and long-haired smelly peaceniks. We deal with God's other fuzzy ... smelly ... creatures.

Come to think of it, I think I'd rather deal with the bears.

The Latest On The Infamous Puppy Farm

As mentioned here a few days ago, the Bland County Planning Commission met on the 4th to decide what needed to be done about the request from the Amish to rebuild that puppy factory over in Mechanicsburg, after it had caught fire back in March, killing 192 dogs.

It appears that the owner is on his way toward getting his permit to rebuild.

To meet the demands of the enraged animal rights crowd, though, the commission hammered out 14 recommendations for the Board of Supervisors - who will actually rule on the awarding of the permit - to consider as it goes into deliberation.

The recommendations include what might be expected:

● Make the facility available to unannounced inspections ...

● Provide an evacuation plan for the animals ... (who's going to read the plan to the puppies wasn't made clear)

● Provide smoke detectors ...

● Provide supervision ...

● Etc. ...

But there was also this recommendation, which caught my eye:

7. No dogs shall be debarked nor shall shock collars be used to control barking.

How in God's name is a dog "debarked?"
I can only imagine.
It can't be pretty.

But when ol' Beazer, the hound from hell, was still alive, I might have, at times, considered the option.

Anyway, for those of you who feel the need to own a $700 pet, you'll soon have your chance.

It's Official

Annie B has an opponent. Reason not given:
Retired judge Thomas nominated to run against Crockett-Stark
By Paul Dellinger, The Roanoke Times

William Thomas Jr., a retired juvenile and domestic relations court judge, was officially nominated last weekend as a Democratic state House candidate.

Thomas will challenge Del. Anne B. Crockett-Stark, R-Wytheville in the 6th House District.

Crockett-Stark is completing her first term, after ousting former Del. Benny Keister in a close election in 2005.

The district covers all of Bland and parts of Giles, Pulaski, Tazewell and Wythe counties. (link)
Judge Thomas, you may recall, cited as his reason for entering the race the fact that the position of delegate is "a hard-decision job," which really didn't say a thing about why he decided to enter the race but was a nice civics lesson.

I offered a helpful suggestion to the good judge at the time he announced. He would do well to heed it. Hire a strategist.

Give us a reason to vote for you, beyond that nebulous explanation you've offered up so far.

Annie B. Crockett-Stark has done just that. She has in the last session, along with her stalwart conservative cohorts in the House of Delegates, stopped dead in its tracks an attempt at a massive expansion of state government and turned back a serious effort to foist a greater tax burden on a woefully over-burdened populace.

Beat that, big guy. Or stay home.

Is Ours a Nation Of Laws?

From a legal immigrant:

Henry David Thoreau, the famous essayist, said that "It is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things."

Judging by the desperate allegations being made by some supporters of amnesty for illegal aliens, it seems that one characteristic they lack is wisdom -- or common sense, for that matter.

The most noisome of these allegations is that any opponent of amnesty must be a bigot, a xenophobe or a racist -- since most illegal aliens are brown-skinned and most opponents are white. Of course, the message is that America's immigration system is racist.

Many decent people resent the Senate amnesty bill not because of racism, but because the bill insults the decency and intelligence of legal immigrant and citizen alike -- for it legalizes those who had no respect for American law in the first place. After all, by coming here illegally, their very first act was to break the law. (link)

The law. It either provides for and maintains ordered coexistence here in our country through a set of rules that we all freely agree to live by or it means nothing. It becomes a joke.

12 million illegal immigrants have made our set of laws a joke. And we are on the verge of surrendering to them.

We are better than this.

It's Time We Saw Results

We've heard a great deal in recent years about all the really swell things that stem cells are going to do ... some day. Here's another prediction:
Biologists Are Making Skin Cells Work Like Stem Cells
By Nicholas Wade, The New Yro kTimes


In a surprising advance that could sidestep the ethical debates surrounding stem cell biology, researchers have come much closer to a major goal of regenerative medicine, the conversion of a patient’s cells into specialized tissues that might replace those lost to disease.

The advance is an easy-to-use technique for reprogramming a skin cell of a mouse back to the embryonic state. Embryonic cells can be induced in the laboratory to develop into many of the body’s major tissues.

If the technique can be adapted to human cells, researchers could use a patient’s skin cells to generate new heart, liver or kidney cells that might be transplantable and would not be rejected by the patient’s immune system. But scientists say they cannot predict when ... (link)
If ... when ... cannot predict ...

Write another check.

Why Don't We Just Empty The Prisons?

The United States Senate is on a roll. Where once the topic of illegal immigration turned on the need to secure our borders, to stem the flow of undocumented aliens pouring into the USA, it has now descended into a mad dash to see how comprehensively - and quickly - we can pardon those who have broken our laws twice.

For the love of Christ.

Senate OKs amnesty for deportees
By Stephen Dinan, The Washington Times


The Senate voted yesterday to grant amnesty to hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens who have already been caught and ordered deported but are defying a court order, preserving their path to citizenship as part of the immigration bill.

Another showdown is scheduled ... (link)
This is rich. These slime buckets broke the law and mocked us by entering our country illegally. Then, when caught and asked - politely - to leave, they defy us again.

And our august Senate surrenders, caving to their defiance. Like cowards.

This is beyond outrageous.

The Sun Sets On The British Empire

That header actually comes from a catch-phrase we heard in my youth, when there was still great to be found in Great Britain - "The sun never sets on the British Empire."

That was a long time ago. And in an altogether different place:

Mohammed Top Brit Baby Name
New York Post Wire Services


June 7, 2007 -- Mohammed is on a fast track to become the most popular name for baby boys in Britain by the end of the year.

The name - with 14 different spelling variations - is now second to Jack, The Times of London reported yesterday. (link)


Tommy, it seems, fell out of favor back when Britain was a proud nation.

We Certainly Don't Want That To Happen

A New York Times correspondent is concerned that politics might enter the still-unfolding Scooter Libby show trial saga. Gosh. Heaven forbid:
When Pardons Turn Political
By Jim Rutenberg, The New York Times


Washington, June 6 — President Bush has pardoned 113 people during his presidency, including a Tennessee bootlegger and a Mississippi odometer cheat.

But none has drawn the public scrutiny, nor posed the same political challenge, as the candidate that many conservatives hope will be Bush presidential pardon No. 114: I. Lewis Libby Jr., the former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, who was convicted of lying to investigators in the C.I.A. leak case and sentenced Tuesday to 30 months in prison.

A pardon for Mr. Libby would attract more painful attention to a case ... (link)
This is so lame, and transparent, that I'm not even going to mention all the political pardons granted by George Bush's predecessor.

Bottom line: Libby will be pardoned. And the New York Times will howl. And all will be right.