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

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Liberal Religious Leaders Don't Give a Damn ...

... about the plight of Appalachians. They only care about themselves. And about the earth goddess, Gaia. There is no other explanation for this:

Religious leaders urge Kaine to oppose proposed coal-fired plant
By Terri Nelson, Associated Press Writer

Richmond, Va. (AP) -- More than 60 faith leaders from across Virginia have joined environmental groups in urging Gov. Timothy M. Kaine to oppose a coal-fired power plant that Dominion Virginia Power wants to build in Wise County.

The ministers, rabbis and theologians signed onto a letter to the governor from the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, one of the environmental groups leading the fight against the proposed plant in southwest Virginia.

The spiritual leaders state in the letter to Kaine that speaking out against the coal-fired plant is their moral responsibility as part of their "good stewardship of God's creation." (link)
Not that it matters to these effete snobs, but that much-needed power plant will bring an estimated $439 million in revenue to impoverished Wise County. Along with 1,358 jobs to this tortured region that has battled since time immemorial with high unemployment and a heart-rending standard of living.

The carbon footprint - whatever that is - that the poor schmucks who live in Southwest Virginia might leave appears to be more important.

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Laugher of the day, from Fr. Gerry Creedon, Pastor of St. Charles Borromeo in lavishly affluent Arlington, Virginia:

“I am here today to speak for the poor who will suffer the most from the consequences of dirty energy."

Ah, yes, the plight of the poor who fret each day about dirty energy.

I wonder if he's ever met a poor person.

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A list of those "concerned" theologians and ministers can be found here. Conspicuously, all but a few are from liberal bastions in the commonwealth, far removed from Appalachia - Richmond, northern Virginia, Blacksburg. Only two co-signers are from the area (it appears): some gal from something called the "Church of Spiritual Humanism" in Wise and Rev. Philip K. Cooper, President, Marathon Ministry Inc.*, which is located, if memory serves, in a shopping center in Castlewood.

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* I encourage the Reverend Cooper to read this portion of the mission statement of his church:

"Marathon Ministries exists according to Scripture, which calls us to serve the poor and needy, and tells us that by doing so, we serve Jesus himself. (Matthew 25:40)."

Providing meaningful employment to those in need, pal, goes a long way toward achieving that goal. Or does it soothe your conscience, in some twisted way, to keep handing out CARE packages?

What's Missing From This Story?

The Virginia House and Senate have reached a budget agreement. That's a good thing.

But the devil, as they say, is in the details. Or not.

This is how the Associated Press describes the end result of the House-Senate negotiation:

House, Senate reach accord on state budget

Richmond (AP) — House and Senate negotiators resolved differences on a new two-year state budget yesterday, setting up a final vote on the $78 billion package this week.

• 2 percent pay raises ... another 2 percent boost ...

• About $44 million to fund ... mentally disabled ...

• About $22 million to expand pre-kindergarten access ...

• An additional $11 million in each of the next two years ... colleges and universities ...

[Y]esterday, with negotiators dressed more casually and without a crowd of lobbyists, the mood brightened noticeably. (link)
Is there anyone out there who was concerned as to whether these guys would figure out a way to spend our money? No?

Is there anyone - besides me - knowing that the budget deficit (the shortfall that grows daily what with revenues not matching spending) is a looming train wreck, wondering what our legislators agreed to with regard to taxation?

Keep on wonderin'. There is no mention.

Only back-slaps and high-fives. Everyone in Richmond has reached agreement to spend money they may or may not have.

So, what gives? A special session to deal with the most important aspect of this saga?

For the love of God, people.

The Real Racists

How anyone could watch that marvelous Hillary campaign commercial - "It's 3 a.m." - and think of slavery and the Ku Klux Klan is beyond me. But then I'm not a (black) college professor whose life is consumed by thoughts of race either:
The Red Phone in Black and White
By Orlando Patterson, writing in the New York Times

On first watching Hillary Clinton’s recent “It’s 3 a.m.” advertisement, I was left with an uneasy feeling that something was not quite right — something that went beyond my disappointment that she had decided to go negative. Repeated watching of the ad on YouTube increased my unease. I realized that I had only too often in my study of America’s racial history seen images much like these, and the sentiments to which they allude.

I have spent my life studying the pictures and symbols of racism and slavery, and when I saw the Clinton ad’s central image — innocent sleeping children and a mother in the middle of the night at risk of mortal danger — it brought to my mind scenes from the past. I couldn’t help but think of D. W. Griffith’s “Birth of a Nation,” the racist movie epic that helped revive the Ku Klux Klan, with its portrayal of black men lurking in the bushes around white society. The danger implicit in the phone ad — as I see it — is that the person answering the phone might be a black man, someone who could not be trusted to protect us from this threat. (link)
This is outrageously silly beyond words. Hillary attacking Obama for the man's woeful lack of experience is akin to "portrayal of black men lurking in the bushes around white society"? Where in God's name did that come from?

How 'bout I answer my own question.

I've often referred to people like Professor Patterson as being modern-day slave traders. Blacks who make their (comfortable) living off of such pronouncements. Racists(!) under every rock. Seeing hatred(!!) and the blackest of motives (sorry for the intentional play on words) (!!!) in every story, no matter how far removed from reality - or how goofy - the connection. Playing to white guilt. Sharpton ... Jackson ...

This does get to be rather surreal, doesn't it?

Strangely, there are a few hundred thousand people out there who will read this joker's foolishness this morning and nod their heads in agreement. Hillary's a racist.

I marvel at their idiocy. And at the fact that these slave traders get away with it, time after time.

Time For Yet Another Apology

Well, we've gone from calls for the governor to apologize for the 19th century institution of slavery to calls for the the president to apologize for the 17th century treatment of Indians to ...

... a call for "humanity" to apologize for every freaking wrong done to anyone at any time in the history of mankind. Any bets on whether this will placate these geniuses?

Charleston (WV) Gazette editorial

Humanity has much to be ashamed of. During the witch hunts, countless women were tortured and executed on grounds that they turned into animals, copulated with Satan and flew through the sky. During the settlement of America, Indians were "ethnically cleansed" from the land to make room for arriving Europeans - who soon imported black slaves. During the Nazi Holocaust, most of the West didn't lift a finger to help desperate Jews. Today, vast numbers of African girls are genitally mutilated to make them docile before husbands.

Apology has become a way by which modern leaders express public regret for cruel behavior of their predecessors - and demonstrate that their culture has improved morally.*

... German statesmen ... world forgiveness ...

... Popes John XXIII and John Paul II ... hostility toward Jews ...

... Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd ... aborigines ...

Why has no U.S. leader apologized for these evils? (link)
Two responses:

1) One has. In fact, one has twice. From the London Guardian, April, 1998: "During President Clinton's tour of Africa he apologised not once but twice: in Uganda he apologised for the slave trade; in Rwanda he apologised for western inaction in the face of the Rwanda genocide."

2) Would it really change anything if we appointed a Secretary of Daily Apologia? Wouldn't you still whine about wrongs committed against Indians and witches and such from centuries past? Isn't that what your kind do?

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* It's far from a "moral improvement" for an individual to make an empty apology for wrongs committed against people he doesn't know by people he doesn't know. If Bill Clinton wanted to exhibit some kind "moral improvement," he would have skipped the apology for the slave trade and apologized for his own actions - starting with the rape of Juanita Broaddrick.

He May Get Bootlicking Press ...

... and the media will definitely (continue to ) love him for it, but our Congressman-for-Life Rick Boucher (D-9th District), sponsor of the Free Flow of Information Act of 2007 that "shields" journalists from prosecution should they decide to not divulge sources, needs to address these very profound concerns:

No 'freedom to keep secrets'
If anyone can be a journalist, anyone could defy a subpoena.
By Glenn Harlan Reynolds, writing in USA Today

It's a familiar situation: Subpoenaed to provide information to a court, a journalist asserts a privilege not available to other citizens, who must comply with the law. And, once again, the arguments for that privilege seem more self-interested than public-interested.

Journalists, however, claim a special status: They argue that complying with subpoenas in ways that would identify their sources might make people less likely to confide in them in the future. There are two problems with this argument: The first is that the Constitution doesn't require it. The second is that we're all journalists now.

The Constitution merely protects the freedom of speech and publication — not the freedom to keep secrets, which is what journalists are asking for when they seek special privileges of non-disclosure. Increasingly, journalists seem to be focusing on what not to tell us. In doing so, they're usually pursuing their own interests, not the First Amendment's or their readers'.

The other problem with journalist "shield" laws is that journalism isn't a profession; it's an activity, one now engaged in by many. With the proliferation of blogs, podcasts, YouTube videos and the like, anyone can be a journalist. But if anyone could assert a journalistic privilege not to disclose sources, the work of the courts would be far tougher. (link)

Are journalists above the law? Before you say Hell No!, think about Boucher's intent. It is to do just that - to elevate the position of "journalist" - including me as a blogger presumably - to one that allows for Constitutional protections not granted to the rest of you mere mortals.

Why would he do this? What is Boucher's real intent?

Need you ask? Get your arms around "Politician of the Year 2006: Rick Boucher—Fighter for Access."

Quote of the Day

From Barack Obama to Bill and Hillary:

"'If I am not ready, how is it that you think I should be such a great vice president?"

A question yet to be answered ...

My Thoughts On The Eliot Spitzer Scandal

1) I don't get overly worked up over business transactions between two consenting adults.
1a) Yes, it's against the law.

2) But thousands of dollars ($4300!) a throw?!

3) I do feel sorry for his wife. Reminds me of that New Jersey governor's spouse a few years ago who had to stand there and endure a similar press conference as her husband talked about his trysts with gay lovers. How degraded they must have felt.

4) I think (in both cases), the "burning bed" defense should be carefully researched and the spouses should consider performing a little Lorena Bobbitt on their sleazebag husbands.

5) Then there's the hypocrisy ...

6) Let the games begin. Spitzer deserves this.

7) There are more than a few people on Wall Street and in the pharmaceuticals business who went out last night and tipped a few after the news broke. "Die, pond scum!" was the quip of the day.

8) From "Crusader of the Year" to "Dick of the Year."

9) I don't think he should be allowed to resign (depending on what the feds have on him). He should be forced to stay in office there in New York for a long, long time. As I said back during MonicaGate, a scandal involving another dick, "You voted for him. You live with him."

10) Andrea Peyser says it all: "Now there's one for the tombstone."

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Update: Oops. Seems there is something called the Mann Act.

Ridiculous Ruling Of The Day

I firmly believe that school administrators should be allowed to enforce an established dress code, should they feel the need. But does the following have anything to do with a dress code? Or is it about that inexplicable fear that arises so often these days in certain circles at the mere thought that guns exist:
Boy punished for T-shirt with gun image
Yahoo! News

Lancaster, Pa. - The family of a middle school student who was given detention for wearing a T-shirt bearing the image of a gun has filed a federal freedom of speech lawsuit against the school district.

The shirt bears the image of a military sidearm and on the front pocket says "Volunteer Homeland Security." On the back, over another image of the weapon, are the words "Special issue Resident Lifetime License — United States Terrorist Hunting Permit — Permit No. 91101 — Gun Owner — No Bag Limit."

Officials at the Millersville school told him to turn his shirt inside out. When Miller refused, he got two days of detention.

[A]n attorney for the school district said school must create a safe environment for students in the post-Columbine era, and bringing even the image of a gun to school violates the district's policy. (link)
The courts have ruled that schools be allowed to create and enforce dress codes. But "safe environment" codes? A tee shirt?

For the love of God.