Winds rip region, knock out power
Oddly, both my children who live in and around Roanoke had their electricity go out yesterday (Jodi's is still out). Ours stayed on throughout (knock on wood). Guess Jesus likes us better.
Many politicians vow to create jobs, boost manufacturing, curb inflation, and otherwise guide the economy. When good times arrive, they're praised. Or if bad times hit, they're blamed. But, in truth, the economy is a monster machine that drives itself, and politicians can do little to affect it. This point was underscored last week by Newsweek columnist Robert Samuelson, who wrote: "We have a $14 trillion economy. The idea that presidents can control it lies between an exaggeration and an illusion."This time, by God, they're right. Perhaps for the first time ever.
Fuming on stalled bans on smoking
By Michael Paul Williams, Richmond Times-Dispatch Columnist
The House of Delegates, where Republicans hold the majority, defeated bills last week that would ban smoking in restaurants. Such bans are still in play in the Democratic-controlled Senate.
Gov. Timothy M. Kaine, a Democrat, has proposed the ban. But why is this a partisan issue?
Don't offer me another specious argument against government interference, as if it's an inalienable right for people to blow smoke up my nose.
How about my rights to clear lungs, or clothing that doesn't require dry cleaning after a visit to a restaurant or bar?
"Freedom" has become another word for "selfish" in our society. But should diners have to expose themselves to risk because of someone's imaginary "right" to spark up a cigarette? (link)
How Many More Warnings?All of Virginia was looking on as well, in bemusement, wondering what the Virginia Tech massacre - the one these geniuses keep bringing up, thinking it makes some point - had to do, in any way, with gun shows.
New York Times editorial
Even with families victimized in the Virginia Tech massacre looking on, lawmakers in Virginia lined up like clay pigeons for the gun lobby last month to block legislation that would have closed the state’s notorious gun-show loophole. That means that anyone — ex-felons and deranged citizens included — can continue to buy firearms at laissez-faire “sportsmen” shows. (link)
'Jaws' star Roy Scheider dead at 75: hospital
Roy Scheider, best known for his role as the heroic police chief in classic 1975 movie "Jaws," died on Sunday aged 75, hospital officials confirmed.
The veteran actor died at the University for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, Arkansas, a hospital spokesman said. No cause of death or further information was immediately available.
Scheider's acting career spanned five decades and included two Oscar nominations for his performances in 1971's crime thriller "The French Connection" and 1979's "All That Jazz." (link)