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

Monday, January 07, 2008

A Nail In The Coffin

Dana Milbank, of Washington Post fame, has put together a video narration of a Hillary rally in Nashua, NH that is just devastating.

See "Washington Sketch: Fired Up and Ready To Bore."

"If we vote for you will you stop talking?"

Ouch.

A Two'fer

We're big on busting criminals down here in Southwest Virginia, for two reasons: (1) America is a better place with the scumbags off the street, and (2) prisons are a huge growth industry here.

So bring on the crime ... er, criminals:
Virginia's prison population forecast to rise
To House estimated 6,700 more inmates by 2013, state builds, expands sites

By Frank Green, Richmond Times-Dispatch Staff Writer

Since 1990, in response to rising crime, predictions of rising crime and tougher sentencing, Virginia has approved 21,000 new prison beds at a cost of more than $1 billion.

Barring the unexpected, more prisons are in Virginia's future.

By 2013, Virginia's prison population is expected to grow by 6,700 men and women to 44,700. A half-dozen major prison projects -- costing roughly $300 million -- are planned, under way or have been recently completed. (link)
Let me be the first to offer up Bland County for the site of a new facility. I do it in the name of fairness and non-discrimination. Our largest employer is the Bland County Correctional Center (for which we're very appreciative; although we hope you keep the guards on their toes so that we don't have to interact too closely with the 300 child molesters in residence).

But the prison is a "male only" joint. Is that fair?

I say: Send us some chicks!

Now I have 20 gently rolling acres with a scenic view of the the valley below, pristine brook a'babblin' through pastoral woodlands and grasslands, a short jaunt from the interstate ...

The Gift Of Giving

Here's the message that's lost on the people who run Target Corporation.

Scott McDonald, a Salvation Army volunteer, writing in this morning's Roanoke Times:
Pat yourself on the back, citizens of Roanoke Valley. As the "Big Elf" at the Salvation Army Christmas Toy Store, I was privileged to watch grateful parents pick up gifts for some 3,000 underprivileged children.

Organizations and individuals provided an astounding 967 new bicycles in addition to more than 10,000 other gifts given through the Salvation Army's Angel Tree and the Marine Corps Reserve's Toys for Tots programs. A local club and a drive by a local radio station each brought in some of these bikes. A group of retirees (mostly Appalachian Power) assembled 225 crated bikes and checked the others. A group of GE employees and their families provided and assembled six pallets of wagons, tricycles and scooters.

The families also received food boxes that filled two refrigerated semi-trailers and a delivery truck. The valley's largest food retailer provided food at a bargain price as well as shopping carts and one of the semi-trailers. (link)
Meanwhile Target Corp. (TGT) is trading down at 48.08, -1.49 (-3.01%).

The Bob Dole Rationale

It pains me to read my favorite columnist, Dorothy Rabinowitz of the Wall Street Journal, write approvingly of presidential candidate John McCain. She's generally more clear-headed. But approving she is (in "McCain's Promise"):

Mr. McCain's views on immigration and perhaps a number of other issues may never win the approval of some of his strongest supporters. But to those who have watched him these many years, that can't in the end matter. They know who he is. Those differences likely won't matter in New Hampshire ...

With luck, the independents to vote in New Hampshire will have been paying close attention to [Ron] Paul's plans for the United States, in the event he wins office. That should do the trick.

Something should, in this contest whose outcome will likely determine whether the Republicans end up nominating the candidate with the best chance of winning in November or whether, unlike the last time, John McCain's march ends in the snows of New Hampshire.

By that rationale, if Adolf Hitler had been the center of attention at Berlin's 1940's frat parties - and slaughtered six million Jews between gigs - he'd have been viewed approvingly by Ms. Rabinowitz. And, lest we forget, Adolf and his SS buddies had all the guns, so he probably had "the best chance of winning" any election he deemed appropriate as well.

Sorry. Positions matter. Policy matters. Votes matter. The Constitution matters. Principle matters. This country's future matters.

That thingie about his "views on immigration and perhaps a number of other issues" is a bit more important to many of us who will never vote for the man, come hell or high water.

And if you want to adopt the Bob Dole-is-the-most-electable-candidate attitude with McCain having "the best chance of winning in the GOP field," you'll end up with another Bob Dole in the White House.

So What Exactly Are We To Cheer?

I found this Washington Post editorial this morning about Loudoun County's welcome change in leadership to be amusing. The change is welcome because ... well, it's hard to say exactly. Even the editorialist can't quite put a finger on it. The "change" looks a whole lot like "status quo."

A New Day in Loudoun

Loudoun County, among the nation's fastest-growing jurisdictions for much of the past decade, has been ill served in recent years by a local governing body whose disdain for compromise was matched by its contempt for dissent. ...

Thus it was gratifying the other day to see a newly elected board take office, shorn now of the Republican majority that was defeated at the polls. And it was heartening to watch it take up, as its first official business, the restoration of Mr. York's albeit mostly symbolic powers. That alone will not heal the wounds caused by the last board's arrogance, but it was a start.

Like other suburban jurisdictions torn by debates over the pace of development, Loudoun has been burdened by the pendulum effect of successive governing bodies that swung from pro- to anti-growth majorities and back again. The current supervisors, elected mostly on a slow-growth platform, would be well advised to steer a middle course -- which in truth had lately been forced on their predecessors by popular demand. (link) (emphasis mine)


So the folks at the Post are tickled pink over a move to restore something that has no real meaning ("symbolic powers") and calls upon the new county leadership to follow the path established by the old county leadership.

What exactly are we to be applauding here?

Ah. GOP out. Dems in.

They could have saved a lot of trees and left it at that

The Bloom Is Off The Rose

I always found the mainstream media blather about Bill Clinton being an electrifying public speaker to be nothing but hokum (much the same as is playing out with Obama). Read an account of a William Jennings Bryan speech, starting with his "The Cross Of Gold," and you'll understand electrifying.

By comparison ...

... Bill Clinton is puttin' 'em to sleep:

In New Hampshire, Bill Clinton Is Finding Less Spark
By Mark Leibovich, The New York Times


Durham, N.H. — Is this what it would have been like had Elvis been reduced to playing Reno?

Former President Bill Clinton has been drawing sleepy and sometimes smallish crowds at big venues in the state that revived his presidential campaign in 1992. He entered to polite applause and rows of empty seats at the University of New Hampshire on Friday. Several people filed out midspeech, and the room was largely quiet as he spoke, with few interruptions for laughter or applause. He talked about his administration, his foundation work and some about his wife.

"Hillary’s got good plans,” Mr. Clinton kept saying as he worked through a hoarse-voiced litany of why his wife, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York, is a “world-class change agent.” He urged his audience to “caucus” on Tuesday for Mrs. Clinton, before correcting himself (“vote”). He took questions, quickly worked a rope line and left. (link)

“Hillary’s got good ... zzzzzzzzzzzzzz..."


That's it? Hillary’s got good plans? My heart races in eager anticipation of his next words.

See girl's expression stage left.

“Hillary’s got good plans.” That's a far cry from this:

"Ah, my friends, we say not one word against those who live upon the Atlantic Coast, but the hardy pioneers who have braved all the dangers of the wilderness, who have made the desert to blossom as the rose - the pioneers away out there [pointing to the West], who rear their children near to Nature's heart, where they can mingle their voices with the voices of the birds - out there where they have erected schoolhouses for the education of their young, churches where they praise their creator, and cemeteries where rest the ashes of their dead - these people, we say, are as deserving of the consideration of our party as any people in this country. It is for these that we speak. We do not come as aggressors. Our war is not a war of conquest; we are fighting in the defence of our homes, our families, and posterity. We have petitioned, and our petitions have been scorned; we have entreated, and our entreaties have been disregarded; we have begged, and they have mocked when our calamity came. We beg no longer; we entreat no more; we petition no more. We defy them! (source)

Now that dude could bring a crowd to its feet.

Photo courtesy of the New York Times

Welcome To My Living Room

If these things get any bigger ...

In today's news:

Sharp to sell 108-inch LCD TV this year
Reuters

Las Vegas (Reuters) - Japanese electronics maker Sharp Corp will begin selling a 108-inch LCD television later this year, executives told the Consumer Electronics Show on Sunday.

Executives also said at a news conference that Sharp had developed a prototype 65-inch liquid crystal display TV that was just over 1 inch thick and weighed 23 percent less than previous models. (link)

See the new TV below. I wonder how you get this monster through the front door ...

And we have video, of course, from Popular Mechanics:

He's Just Now Finding This Out?

Where was John Edwards when Bill Clinton was accused of raping a woman and the president's team of assassins - including Hillary - and the press - blamed it on that vast right-wing conspiracy?

Edwards: "The Clinton campaign has no conscience"
Politico.com

Edwards responded sharply to a Clinton aide's criticism today, intensifying a back-and-forth that began at last night's debate, after Clinton said Nataline Sarkisyan could be alive if the patients bill of rights, which he'd boasted of championing, had passed.

"The Clinton campaign has no conscience," Edwards said, after Clinton spokesman Jay Carson said Edwards does no more than "read articles about people who need help and talk about them."

"The idea that everything is about them [suggests] that they have no conscience," Edwards said of the Clinton campaign, my colleague Josh Kraushaar reports. "I'm very surprised by the comments." (link)


Edwards is surprised by what the rest of us learned 15 years ago. And he thinks he can be president.

I don't think so.