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

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Holiday Inn Express Presidency

"Don't worry, I have experience. I'm not a surgeon, but I was married to one for eight years."

Something To Ponder

I wonder why it is that the Bluefield Daily Telegraph is always in support of Democrats' efforts to raise our taxes here in Virginia, including their recent effort involving transportation taxes, but comes out in opposition to high utility costs.

Must be that "progressive" thing.

I'll bet, when the Dems introduce legislation calling for an increase in gasoline taxes to pay for those highway improvements up in affluent Arlington County, they'll ... be ... opposed ...

Bart Hinkle Has My Back

Reinforcing an argument I made a few days ago, Richmond Times-Dispatch columnist A. Bart Hinkle asks why it is that we are so hell-bent on providing non-smokers free and unfettered access to all restaurants and bars across this land but we are just as adamant about denying smokers that same right. Well, in so many words anyway.

Here's Mr. Hinkle:
Let's Sort This Issue Out Through Civil, Mutual Consent

Gov. Tim Kaine deserves credit for raising the question at the heart of the debate over smoking in public, even if he felt a need to answer it the wrong way.

"This is about the health of restaurant patrons, but some of them can have a choice to go to another restaurant," he said on Monday. "But hundreds of thousands of Virginians' livelihoods depend on working in a bar and restaurant, and they don't have a choice." Really?

It seems somewhat odd to suggest only "some" restaurant patrons choose to eat at Moe's instead of Joe's, which implies others are forced into Joe's at gunpoint. It seems just as odd to suggest employees have no choice whatsoever. Restaurant jobs rank alongside nursing, child care, and telemarketing for high turnover. Exceptions, of course, exist. But job mobility in restaurants is often higher than in most other economic sectors.

Even in a town with only one restaurant, a busboy who finds smoking objectionable still has a choice: He can make a smoke-free policy a condition of his consenting to work there. If his fellow employees agree, then the owner will have to make a choice of his own. But if his fellow employees disagree, then why should his preferences overrule theirs? He might just as well go to work in a strip club and then demand that the ladies cover up because nudity offends him. (link)
Brilliant. And absolutely logical.

But hardly the groupthink of the day, Bart.

Here in the USA, where fascist arguments prevail when it comes to the issue of smoking, there is to be no compromise so that all aggrieved parties' concerns are addressed. Smokers are pariahs (modern-day lepers, as an influential commentarian calls them) and deserve banishment. Not concessions. You write like you think they too are Americans, Silly Boy.

Anyway, read the whole column. A. Bart Hinkle proves once again why he is the best, the brightest, and most articulate writer in the commonwealth today.

A Little News Humor

Okay, it isn't laugh-out-loud humor. But it ain't bad.

From the Richmond-Times-Dispatch this morning (in "Car hits front of Carytown Ukrop's"):

"A motorist's mistake resulted in a call for a major cleanup in one of the natural foods aisles at the Carytown Ukrop's."


By The Same Logic ...

... the boys at the Roanoke Times should be advocating the closing of that mythical gun show loophole because some maniac in Washington D.C. smothered and stabbed her four daughters to death several months ago and left them to rot in her apartment. That had nothing to do with the Virginia Tech massacre either.

Not tragic enough to touch gun shows?

Even the Tech shootings may not be enough to close a loophole.

Supporting reform of Virginia's mental health system is the easy piece.

After Seung-Hui Cho shot and killed 32 other people and then himself on the Virgnia Tech campus, a bipartisan consensus quickly formed to improve a system that allowed the mentally ill student to go without ordered treatment.

Eliminating Virginia's gun show loophole, though, is a politically dicey proposition.

The same public horror that has energized one reform movement should spur the other. But gun-rights sentiment runs so strong in the state that Gov. Tim Kaine's call to close the loophole shows no sign of eroding a longstanding, bipartisan consensus against such a reasonable action. And that is unfortunate. (link)

That sentiment is strong - and getting stronger - because you had it your way for decades and the passage of gun law after gun law - as you advocated so vociferously - did nothing to prevent crime. nothing. Nor did all your existing laws stop Seung-hui Cho from killing those innocent people on the Virginia Tech campus in April.

The fact that you argue for another law that - had it been in place at the time - would have had absolutely no impact on the outcome is in itself evidence enough that you're grasping at straws. And flailing blindly.

You can call that "gun-rights sentiment" unfortunate. We think of it as our best means of survival.

And history has proven you to be wrong on this issue. Over and over again.

Quote Of The Day

From James Taranto:
[I]t is difficult to imagine a male candidate benefiting the way Mrs. Clinton appears to have done after tearing up over how difficult it is to run for office. If it works, it works; but it's an interesting irony that Mrs. Clinton is being put forth as a feminist icon while taking advantage of a double standard that rests on a presumption of feminine weakness.
"Damsel In Distress," Best of the Web Today, January 10, 2008

To The Battlements!

True to form, the Democrats here in Virginia are planning on assaulting us with another tax increase:
Senate Democrats Looking for Revenue
By Tim Craig and Anita Kumar, Washington Post Staff Writers

Richmond, Jan. 10 -- Senate Democrats said Thursday that they might push for a tax or fee increase to raise additional money for transportation, reopening a debate that many thought was resolved when the General Assembly approved a landmark deal last year.

All 21 Senate Democrats stood together to call for additional money for transportation, saying that last year's $1.1 billion compromise did not go far enough.

The Democrats did not offer specifics at their news conference, but Senate Majority Leader Richard L. Saslaw (D-Fairfax) said he plans to meet with colleagues in the coming days to discuss possible solutions. Some Democrats are advocating an increase in the state's gasoline tax, but there are divisions in the caucus over how to proceed. (link)
That group of Democrats standing together to confiscate more of our hard-earned income here in Southwest Virginia to fix roads up in affluent Fairfax County included, of course, our own Phil Puckett and Roscoe Reynolds.

Who was it we sent these jokers to Richmond to represent? I forget.

On That Victory You Don't Hear Much About

From Ralph Peters:
We dropped 20 tons of bombs on 40 terrorist targets yesterday, including safe houses, weapons caches and IED factories. In a late-afternoon exchange with The Post, Gen. David Petraeus characterized our current ops as "executing aggressively, pursuing tenaciously."

The headlines at home? "Nine American Soldiers Killed." No mention of progress or a fleeing enemy on the front pages. Just dead soldiers.

Determined to elect a Democrat president, the "mainstream" media simply won't accept our success. "Impartial" journalists find a dark cloud in every silver lining in Iraq. And the would-be candidates themselves continue to insist that we should abandon Iraq immediately - as if time had stood still for the past year - while hoping desperately for a catastrophe in Baghdad before November.

These are the pols who insisted that the surge didn't have a chance. And nobody calls 'em on it.
"The Surge At One," The New York Post, January 11, 2008

Spinning In Circles

Amid the gloom, a bright, shining light.

No, a brilliant beacon, blotting out all darkness.

In fact, the New York Times doesn't know what to make of Christmas sales reports.

So it just declares the selling season to have been a disaster.

My head hurts after having read this:

Poor December at Retailers; Most Report Drops in Sales
By Michael Barbaro, The New York Times

The weakest holiday shopping season in five years ended dismally for most retailers, whose sales tumbled despite deep discounts and extended store hours, stoking fears that the economy is tipping into a recession.

Sales fell across the board, knocking down once seemingly invincible chains like Target (down 5 percent compared with last year); Abercrombie & Fitch (2 percent); Nordstrom (4 percent); and Kohl’s (11.4 percent).

But one major chain was spared:
Wal-Mart, whose relentless price slashing appeared to resonate with penny-pinching shoppers. Its sales rose 2.7 percent.

Wal-Mart’s lopsided victory — and the strength of off-price chains like TJ Maxx and Ross Dress for Less — suggested that jittery consumers, trying to cut back on spending, favored bargain chains over full-price stores during the 2007 holiday season. (link)

Retail sales were "poor," falling "across the board," except at the one retailer that dwarfs all others, where sales were respectable (but for the wrong reason, of course) and at a few operations that apparently aren't to be considered part of that "board."


We Win Another One

Another day. Another good win in the courts. News from The Volokh Conspiracy:

D.C. lawsuit against gun manufacturers is dismissed:

A unanimous 3-judge decision of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals has dismissed a municipal lawsuit brought against firearms manufacturers, District of Columbia v. Beretta et al. The court ruled that the suit was barred by the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Firearms Act, which was passed by Congress in 2005, and which by its terms applies to all pending and future cases.

In the first part of the decision, the court rules that the congressional act applies to lawsuits brought under D.C.'s Strict Liability Act, which imposes absolute liability on manufacturers for certain firearms injuries. The second part of the decision rejects various arguments that it is unconstitutional for a congressional statute to be applied to a lawsuit that has already been filed.

It was nothing more than harassment (and a feel-good liberal waste of taxpayer money) anyway.

A good day for those who cherish liberty.