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

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Heck, That's A Normal Day Around Here

It is a rare day that you can drive I-77 or I-81 through Wythe County and not see either the state police or a county sheriff's deputy having a motorist pulled over, with a speeding ticket being issued. They are staked out there round the clock.

That's why this seems so un-newsworthy:

Over 1,000 drivers stopped on I-81 in Southwest Virginia during VSP crackdown
By Kacie Dingus Breeding, Kingsport Times-News

1,208 of over 7,000 summonses were issued by VSP [Virginia State Police] to drivers on I-81 on June 22-23 during Operation Air, Land & Speed VII.

According to VSP Division IV Sgt. Michael Conroy, 739 passenger vehicles and 23 commercial vehicles were stopped for speeding on the Division IV portion of I-81, while 2,110 total speeders were cited on I-81. (link)
2,110? Heck, in Wythe County, they have that many by lunchtime on any given day.

The lesson to be learned here? Slow down. Especially in Wythe County, Virginia. Especially at the bottom of the hill, mile marker 43, southbound I-77.

You Need To Come Up For Air, Jeff

Jeff Schapiro, Richmond Times-Dispatch columnist, is a very smart guy. And he writes really well. But I find his musings to be annoying on too many occasions. He's a political power groupie. When it comes to those in positions of authority, in Richmond and in Washington, he broadcasts his subservience. An air of submissiveness. And his fawning obsequiousness is so unbecoming.

Take his most recent column as the latest example in a long line of many ("A script, or not, for J. Warner"). He actually writes Senator John Warner's acceptance-for-another-term-in-office speech.

If you happen to catch a glimpse of a set of lips planted on our senior senator's backside, they would be Schapiro's.

Get a load of this:

Excerpts of the statement Sen. John Warner, R-Va., might -- or might not -- make by September; includes stage direction:

(Trim in bespoke suit; sweeps back silvery hank; drops voice a note) "Good morning, ladies and gentlemen -- scribes, all. Thank you for coming on such short notice. Others may not be as forgiving of my timing. (Chuckles)

"These are perilous times, more perilous than any this doctor's son -- one with roots (pronounced 'ruts') reaching to Amherst County -- can recall. I need not remind you: I've seen much upheaval since first answering the call of public service as a randy young sea dog fresh out of W&L (drawls 'Dubyanell') in WWII.

"We now find ourselves -- excuse me, (clears throat) find our brave fighting men and women ..." (link)

It goes on and on. Interminably on and on.

Christ Almighty, you're pathetic. Why not just offer yourself up to the man there, Jeff?

Arm Yourself. College Students Are Out There.

This is how we go about disarming 300,000,000 Americans. Bring up the "Girls Gone Wild" video.

From a leading gun ban nazi, writing in this morning's Roanoke Times:

More guns would equal more deaths
Brian J. Siebel*

It may be easy, and seem heroic, to suggest that if only one of the students or teachers inside Norris Hall had had a gun that fateful morning of April 16, when Seung-Hui Cho went on his killing rampage, lives would have been saved.

But the real problem with the "heroic" view is that it ignores all the other times guns on campus would likely be misused if they became prevalent. The college-age years (18-24) are the peak periods for drug and alcohol abuse, suicide attempts and violent gun crime.

... [T]wo studies published in the Journal of American College Health have established that college students who own guns are more likely than the average student to engage in binge drinking, use cocaine or crack, be arrested for a DUI and be injured in alcohol-related fights. A binge-drinking, drug-using student is dangerous enough; do we really want to give him or her a gun? (link)

I like that "would likely be ..." line. It allows this:

"A binge-drinking, drug-using, wife-beating, tax-cheating, environment-plundering, flag-desecrating, SUV-driving, Paris Hilton-loving, church-defiling bunch of miscreants ..."

Gee, you put it that way, why don't we just take 'em out back and shoot 'em?

Better yet, why don't we arm ourselves for the day when these people you describe so eloquently step foot on our property?

Or, even better, we call this silliness what it is.

* "Siebel, of Falls Church, is a senior attorney at the Brady Center and author of "No Gun Left Behind: The Gun Lobby's Campaign to Push Guns Into Colleges and Schools.'"

How Else Are They Going To Develop?

The Roanoke Times has an editorial this morning that calls on the town of Pulaski to dissolve itself because of its economic plight rather than work with developers on developing the area. I checked to make sure this wasn't in the Comics section:

Pulaski should consider reversion

There is a dirty word in the lexicon of local government that particularly offends elected officials: reversion. That's when a town gives up its charter and folds back into the county. No more town council, no more town property taxes, no more town police. It's a drastic step for dire times. It's something the Pulaski's leaders should investigate.

Pulaski sold 1,750 acres around Hogan's Dam to a developer who agreed to take responsibility for fixing the dam. It also sold the former Maple Shade Shopping Center property for a nifty profit. And now the Loving Field recreation complex could be on the block.

There's consolidation and then there's a fire sale. These deals smack of the latter. The town is giving up valuable property for immediate financial windfalls and in some cases is losing valuable open space to development.

If the county is willing and the numbers line up, dissolving the town could be a better solution for citizens than these piecemeal sales. (link)

Translated: The only way the town of Pulaski is going to develop is with the help of developers, therefore it should cease to exist, rather than develop.

Please. You're killing me.

If A Tree Falls In The Forest And Nobody ...

Edwards' campaign coming to Roanoke

You Go First, Mother Teresa

John Edwards and Al Gore, I've decided, were perfect for one another in 2004. Both are such hypocrites, they become nothing more than laughable buffoons. Targets, easy targets, of ridicule. Edwards for his opulent lifestyle, stints with hedge funds, $400 haircuts, and calls for the rest of us to sacrifice more for the poor (how is construction on that 26,000 square foot home coming, Johnny?).

And then there's Crazy Al. In a New York Times editorial this morning:

Moving Beyond Kyoto

Once again, Americans must come together and direct our government to take on a global challenge. American leadership is a precondition for success.

To this end, we should demand that the United States join an international treaty within the next two years that cuts global warming pollution by 90 percent in developed countries and by more than half worldwide in time for the next generation to inherit a healthy Earth.

This treaty would mark a new effort. I am proud ... (link)

We need to cut our "carbon footprint" by 90%. Does that "we" include Big Al? Hell no.

He maintains his sumptuous (and wasteful) lifestyle, he continues to jet across the planet, hither and yon, and doesn't cut down even 1% on his global warming emissions (in fact he puts together rock concerts to celebrate his efforts; he's probably increased the amount of damage he's done). Instead of cutting back, as he asks the rest of us to do - by 90%! - he pays a company he owns to plant a tree in Mozambique. His "carbon offsets so the rich don't have to alter their lifestyles" scheme.

So Al Gore demands that we cut our emissions by 90% while he argues with a straight face that he doesn't have to.

Go away, crazy person. You annoy us with your hypocrisy.

They'll Try. They May Succeed.

The New York Times this morning is planting the seeds of discontent in hopes of splitting away as many Hispanic votes from the GOP in 2008 as possible. As many as 7.5 million Americans who consider themselves Latino voted in the last presidential election and a disturbingly high percentage (to the left), an estimated 44%, voted for Bush. That just won't do.

Here's the strategy:
After Bill’s Fall, G.O.P. May Pay in Latino Votes
By Jennifer Steinhauer, The New York Times

Los Angeles, June 30 — Many Republican lawmakers returned to their home districts in triumph this week, having beat back a comprehensive immigration bill that many of their constituents had denounced as untenable.

But the bill’s demise may have greatly damaged the party’s ability to meet its enduring goal of attracting a large percentage of the growing number of Hispanic voters — thousands of whom are ostensibly in line with the party on a host of other issues, said many Republican lawmakers, consultants and Hispanic voters.

“The tone of the debate, and the way it was framed in sort of an ‘us against them’ way, has done great harm in wooing Hispanics to the party,” said Ms. Chavez, who was the director of the United States Commission on Civil Rights under Reagan. (link)
Here's the key point, and what drives this ploy:

"In essence, many Hispanics and Republicans said, the outcome of the legislation may be less damaging to the party than the notion that Hispanics are not welcome among them."

Just as it was frustrating to try to have a debate with these people over the issue of illegal immigration, only to find it quickly turn into a discussion about immigration in general, legal or otherwise, the Democrats, starting with the New York Times, will paint the defeat of the amnesty bill as an attack on all Hispanics.

It has a good chance of working. At least to some extent.

But I have a good bit of faith in the American people. Including those Americans who are of Hispanic descent. They, like the rest of us, believe in law and order. They, like us, want our immigration laws enforced. And many of them, being recent immigrants, legal immigrants, being on the low end of the economic scale, see the influx of millions of illegals as being a threat to their livelihood. Many of the jobs they hold require no skills and many employers make no bones about the fact that they don't care if their hires are legal or not, despite the law.

After all, that young male from Guadalajara who came across the border illegally, poorly educated and impoverished, isn't going to be threatening my job any time soon. And he's willing to pick lettuce for 50 cents an hour less than others, just to survive.

The GOP leadership should tackle the issue head on. And approach the Latino-American community in just such a way. If they did, they'll hold on to those 3-4 million votes. They probably won't, of course. They'll find some way to grovel - again - probably by apologizing and admitting that they made a grievous mistake, and lose many of those votes anyway, along with mine.

As for the Times strategy, it's a good one. And it has a good chance of succeeding. Expect to read and hear a whole lot more of this as we get closer to Hillary's coronation.